On 24th October 2011, Cidaut started one exciting jorney on board a Nissan Leaf. Since that day, the vehicle has been used as a laboratory for understanding the users’s acceptance, the influence of the weather and the driving style on the battery behaviour, the regenerative braking efficiency and so many other issues that have allowed our sustaineble movility and intelligent transport department to fix important knowledge to build many.
All the vehicle movements have been tracked to understand the influence of driving profiles, roads orography, weather conditions, battery temperature and vehicle payload on energy consumption. Also the charging processes have been monitored to evaluated the influence of low charging vs fast charging, battery temperature and voltage and current evolution along the charging.
Braking system has been instrumented to understand the influence of driving style and battery state of charge on regenerative braking working. Noise measurements in the interior and exterior of the vehicle have been performed and on board thermal analysis has allowed to understand some charateristics of the HVAC system.
The vehicle has been used by more than 200 drivers that have completed surveys and have participated in interviews to better understand the initial users’ acceptance to the electric vehicle use. This information has been valuable for Cidaut in order to advance in the evolution of several projects related not only with the electric vehicle, but also with the connected one.
Probono Project has been approved for funding by the European Commission in the Frame of Green Deal. Probono brings together 47 partners all around Europe to develop innovative energy efficient buildings in connected suitable green neighbourghoods.
To demonstrate the results achieved through the project two large scale demonstrators, Madrid and Dublin, and four living labs, Brussels, Porto, Aarhus and Prague, have been proposed across Europe. Cidaut will contribute with mobility, connectivity and integration of renewable energies in Dublin and Madrid.
The large scale demonstrators will focus on new buildings, retrofitting and green districts development, energy optimization at district level, integration in the grid and electromobilty. The project will provide support at city level and will interact with citizens looking for solutions to be reproduced in follower cities.
The living labs will focus on smaller scale business driven renovation or construction projects with clear definition of value proposition and also looking for solutions to be integrated in follower cities.
The project will start on Autumn and will last for 60 months.
In the field of the CERO Project, Cidaut has performed real time on board tests for vulnerable road users’ protection and short range communication. In the case of vulnerable users’ protection the tests have consisted in detecting both pedestrians and cyclist in different traffic scenarios, like overtaking, crossing or appearing behind big vehicles front blind points. The solution obtained is based in low cost components and simplified software. In fact, the system consists of a monocular webcam with a single processor to evaluate the images registered by the camera. The big effort has been made in the optimisation of the system program and in the use of artificial intelligence to teach the system.
All the scenarios tested were successfully completed, the different vulnerable road users were detected in advance and attending to their relative position with the vehicle trajectory the driver was advised accordingly. An important output of these trials has been the time needed for the system to register the image, process it and decide if it is a vulnerable road user or not. This time is 0,11 seconds clearly lower than the average reaction time of a human, 1 second, or the reaction time of a driver in alert situation, 0,5 seconds, and with the additional advantage of no distractions or drowsiness.
In parallel, the dedicated short range communication system developed in the project has been tested in different scenarios, the most relevant ones have been: semaphore communication, work zone + traffic jam and personalised messages for different users. In the first case communication between vehicle and traffic light, when the vehicle is approaching the traffic light, it communicates to the traffic light its speed and position, according to the time to red or to green, the traffic light makes a recommendation to the vehicle about how to proceed, immediately, the message appears in the HMI developed for the project. In the second case, the vehicle is alerted 500m in advance about the cut of one of the lanes of the road due to road works, and in the case of traffic jam due to the work zone, the vehicle is informed by the rest of the vehicles about this situation, as in the previous case, the corresponding graphic messages appear in the HMI of the vehicle. The personalised messages is aimed to substitute the large and costly (about 40 thousand euro) variable message signals in the roads. In this case the infrastructure has several pieces of information available for the users, but the users will only receive the information useful for them. For the test two vehicles were running on the track, the first one was an electric vehicle, and the second one a dangerous goods vehicle. The first vehicle received information about how to reach the closest charging station, while the second one was informed about a mandatory deviation for dangerous goods transport. The short range communication demonstrated to have more than 800 meters range and at the same time to be the best ally of the large range communication to warranty a seamless connectivity for the future autonomous vehicle.
Together with its partners Cidaut has presented the results of URBAN-EV
From 16th to 19 April, Wien has become the focus of mobility solutions thanks to the celebration of TRA 2018. TRA 2018 is an arena for researchers, companies and public authorities active in the field of transport. It welcomes policy makers and stakeholders framing research and transport policy. Together they have shared and discussed new ideas, research results, technological solutions and new business models. Together they have experienced and shaped the future of transport and mobility for people and goods.
Key focus areas have been:
How digitalisation is transforming transport & mobility systems
Decarbonisation & future growth – how to change our mobility system & remain competitive
Shaping the new mobility landscape – a vision for transport & mobility for Europe
In this scenario, Cidaut presented one of the three prototypes of the URBAN-EV project. The target of the project is to apply innovative manufacturing technologies and materials to produce prototypes of a two seats urban electric vehicle with enhanced range and similar occupant safety level than a standard passenger car.
In the actual moment three prototypes of the vehicle are being built, one of them for functional testing and the others for lateral and frontal crash tests. The unit shown in Wien was the frontal crash test one and it created high expectation mainly due to the complex design and join technologies used to bring together different advanced material such as magnesium, structural thermoplastic, aluminum and high strength steel.
Cidaut has participated in EV2017, CIBIM17, 21CMH and LEVS2017
The last quarter of the year has been very active for Cidaut’s participation in events related to electromobility and automated driving. Going in chronological order, on October 5th and 6th, Cidaut was present at EV2017, Electric Vehicles International Conference & Show in Bucarest Romania. This event, technically co-sponsored by the IEEE, is a hub for electric mobility professionals with the possibility of presenting technical advances and testing the last novelties in sustainable solutions. In this scenario, and under the title “Lightweighting and passive safety for urban electric vehicle”, Cidaut presented a summary of the advanced technical solutions applied to three different solutions of urban electric vehicles structures: one of them based on CFRP, another one on multi-material and the last one on high strength steel solutions.
Between the 23rd and 26th of October, Cidaut participated in CIBIM17, the XIII Congreso Iberoamericano de Ingeniería Mecánica, in Lisbon, Portugal. This event is a meeting with participants from most of the American countries and also from Europe with the aim of sharing the best practices in the Mechanical Engineering field. In this occasion Cidaut made a presentation entitled “Design and manufacturing of an urban, light, affordable and safe electric vehicle”. The most relevant results of the Urban-EV project were presented. Urban-EV is a European Project funded by the EC in the 7th Frame Programme that aims to reduce the weight of an urban electric vehicle using innovative solutions in materials and processes and improving at the same time the crashworthiness of the vehicle.
On the same week, between the 25th and 27th of October, Cidaut presented in San Sebastian, Spain, its vision on the future steps on automated vehicles. In the frame of The Future of Advance Manufacturing Congress, and under the title “Implementation of connected vehicles and autonomous driving in the market. Evolution or revolution”, Cidaut exposed the equilibrium needed between the evolution of the connectivity the ADAS and the infrastructure in order to cover the necessary steps to reached the automated driving in a balanced way.
And finally, by the end of November, 22nd and 23rd, Cidaut participated in LEVS 2017, the Light Electric Vehicle Summit, presenting the paper “Passive safety in different structures of light electric vehicles”. In this occasion Cidaut showed the crass test results under simulation and testing of three different European Projects all of them from the 7th Frame Programme: elight, Plus-Moby and Urban-EV. The main message of this presentation is that it is possible to design and manufacture light urban electric vehicles with high safety standards. In this event Cidaut is also part of the Scientific Committee.