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Vehicle Conceptualisation, Compactness, and Subsystem Interaction

A network approach to design and analyse the complex interdependencies in vehicles

Time: Tue 2023-10-24 10.00

Location: Hugin, Teknikringen 8, Stockholm

Language: English

Subject area: Vehicle and Maritime Engineering

Doctoral student: Sai Kausik Abburu , VinnExcellence Center for ECO2 Vehicle design, Teknisk mekanik

Supervisor: Carlos Casanueva, VinnExcellence Center for ECO2 Vehicle design, Järnvägsgruppen, JVG, Farkostteknik och Solidmekanik; Associate Professor Ciarán J. O'Reilly, VinnExcellence Center for ECO2 Vehicle design, Linné Flow Center, FLOW, Farkostteknik och Solidmekanik

QC 231003


The conventional approach to vehicle design is restrictive, limited, andbiased. This often leads to sub-optimal utilisation of vehicle capabilities and allocated resources and ultimately entails the repercussions of designing andlater on an using an inefficient vehicle. To overcome these limitations, it is important to gain a deeper understanding of the interaction effects at component,subsystem, and system level. In this thesis, the research is focused on identifying appropriate methods and developing robust models to facilitate the interaction analysis.

To scrutinise and identify appropriate methods, criteria were developed.Initially, the Design Structure Matrix (DSM) and its variations were examined.While DSM proved to be fundamental for capturing interaction effects,it lacked the ability to answer questions about the structure and behaviour ofinteractions and to predict unintended effects. Therefore, network theory wasexplored as a complementary method to DSM which was capable of providing insights into interaction structures and identifying influential variables.

Subsequently, two criteria were established to identify subsystems significant to interaction analysis: high connectivity to other subsystems and multidisciplinary composition. The traction motor was observed to satisfyboth criteria as it had higher connectivity with other subsystems and was composed of multiple disciplines. Therefore, a detailed model of an induction motor was developed to enable the interaction analysis.

The induction motor model was integrated into a cross-scalar design tool.The tool employed a two-step process: translating operational parametersto motor inputs using Newtonian equations and deriving physical attributes,performance characteristics, and performance attributes of the motor. Comparing the obtained performance characteristics curve against existing studiesvalidated the model’s reliability and capabilities. The design tool demonstrated adaptability to different drive cycles and the ability to modify motor performance without affecting operational parameters. Thus validating the capability of the design tool to capture cross-scalar and intra-subsystem interaction effects. To examine inter-subsystem interaction, a thermal model of an inverter was developed, capturing temperature variations in the power electronics based on motor inputs. The design tool successfully captured interaction effects between motor and inverter designs, highlighting the interplay with operational parameters.

Thus, this thesis identifies methods for interaction analysis and develops robust subsystem models. The integrated design tool effectively captures intra-subsystem, inter-subsystem, and cross-scalar interaction effects. The research presented contributes to the overarching project goal of developing methods and models that capture interaction effects and in turn serve as a guiding tool for designers to understand the consequences of their design choices.