Two Kettering University professors and a graduate student authored a research paper that won first place at the Industrial Engineering and Operations Management (IEOM) Society International’s International Conference on Smart Mobility and Vehicle Electrification.
The paper, “Development of Electric Vehicle Simulation Model with DC BUS V/I-dependent Efficiency Map for Si IGBT and SiC MOSFET-based Traction Inverters,” describes a novel method for electric vehicle (EV) traction inverter simulation and power loss estimation using DC-dependent inverter efficiency maps.
Engineering graduate student Kenton Kyger ’25 and Assistant Professors of Electrical Engineering Dr. Chen Duan and Dr. Allan Taylor authored the paper. Kyger has been working as a graduate research assistant with the Electrical and Computer Engineering departments. They presented their work at the Oct. 10-12 conference in Southfield.
“It was nice to see this research be recognized for the impact that it is capable of producing on the future of EV simulation,” said Kyger, who earned his Bachelor’s degree in Electrical and Mechanical Engineering from Kettering University in 2023.
People commonly use inverter efficiency maps to simulate the inverter’s behavior. The research is important because many assembly-level EV simulations have long drive cycles, which makes it hard to embed inverter motor control simulations that require sub-0.001 second step sizes directly into the model and accurately model the performance of the inverter, and traditional inverter efficiency maps aren’t always available.
The method outlined by this research allows the creation of custom efficiency maps tailored to a particular application. The custom maps are then integrated into the overall simulation, which gives researchers more accurate and detailed results without increasing simulation time or compromising the level of detail the simulation can capture.
The team has been working on this project for about eight months.
Kyger said the biggest challenge was developing accurate power loss formulations for the traction inverters.
“It required some intense study on a short timeline to compile a thorough literature review of both long-established and new research to identify the sources of experimentality—and theoretically—derived power loss that would serve as the baseline for our power loss derivations,” he said.
Duan agreed that was a challenge.
“But, it was necessary as our assumptions of the proposed technology have to be proven theoretically,” he said. “Kenton did a great job diving deep into mathematics with Dr. Taylor’s help and my advice.”
Next, the team will take its approach and apply it to current EV simulation projects at Kettering, including the EV Kartz team’s competitive go-kart, to gather additional data and input parameters.