In-ser­vice trial Fly­brid me­chan­i­cal ki­netic en­ergy re­cov­ery sys­tem

DEMM Engineering & Manufacturing - - NEWS - www.toro­trak.com

Toro­trak, a lead­ing UK low-car­bon ve­hi­cle in­no­va­tion com­pany, has com­pleted an in-ser­vice trial of a midi bus fit­ted with a Fly­brid me­chan­i­cal ki­netic en­ergy re­cov­ery sys­tem.

The trial was con­ducted on a stan­dard bus route in Gilling­ham, Kent from March 2015. It suc­cess­fully demon­strated the per­for­mance of the Fly­brid KERS un­der real-world op­er­at­ing con­di­tions in­clud­ing the cap­ture, stor­age and re­lease of en­ergy from the brakes and the driv­abil­ity of the sys­tem. The learn­ings from the trial have al­ready proven in­valu­able in se­lect­ing the op­er­at­ing strat­egy for the vol­ume pro­duc­tion sys­tem, which will be a se­cond gen­er­a­tion de­sign, says the com­pany.

The new de­sign is in­tended to fur­ther im­prove bus fuel ef­fi­ciency and re­duces the KERS weight and cost with a re­duced parts count and sys­tem weight by 30 per­cent and 80kg re­spec­tively and in­cor­po­rates a sim­pler 2x2x2 clutched flywheel trans­mis­sion sys­tem re­duc­ing ‘coast down’ losses and im­prov­ing ef­fi­ciency dur­ing torque trans­fer.

Us­ing com­mon ma­te­ri­als and man­u­fac­tur­ing meth­ods, and re­mov­ing the re­quire­ment for re­place­ment bat­ter­ies dur­ing ser­vice life the flywheel-based tech­nol­ogy can of­fer ‘ex­cep­tional value and an op­por­tu­nity’ for wide­spread hy­bridi­s­a­tion. The KERS cap­tures the ki­netic en­ergy that is nor­mally wasted when the bus is brak­ing and stores it in a steel and car­bon fi­bre flywheel weigh­ing 8.5kg and spin­ning at up to 30,000 rpm. The en­ergy stored in the flywheel is then de­liv­ered back to the wheels re­duc­ing the en­ergy that is re­quired from the en­gine to ac­cel­er­ate the bus and so re­duc­ing the fuel con­sump­tion of the ve­hi­cle. The process of cap­tur­ing, stor­ing and re­leas­ing en­ergy back to the wheels is fully au­to­mated, giv­ing a high qual­ity driv­ing ex­pe­ri­ence. The Fly­brid KERS tech­nol­ogy was de­vel­oped in For­mula 1 and has been ap­plied in a va­ri­ety of ve­hi­cle ap­pli­ca­tions in­clud­ing mo­tor­sport, pas­sen­ger road cars and ex­ca­va­tors.

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