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Optimizing Transportation Efficiency: From Exploiting Environmental Conditions to Urban Platooning
ISSN: 2640-642X, e-ISSN: 2640-6438
Published October 04, 2021 by SAE International in United States
Citation: Mello, E. and Bauer, P., "Optimizing Transportation Efficiency: From Exploiting Environmental Conditions to Urban Platooning," SAE J. STEEP 3(1):3-17, 2022, https://doi.org/10.4271/13-03-01-0001.
This article explores a wide variety of energy-saving transportation concepts that exploit the unique characteristics of electric vehicles. The confluence of three emerging concepts in transportation, namely electric vehicles, autonomous navigation, and networked vehicles, is shown to present unprecedented opportunities for the optimization of transportation efficiency, especially for passenger and commercial road vehicles. The article addresses both urban and highway driving situations and some of the associated optimization problems. After the introduction of a suitable powertrain model, several optimization problems of practical importance are formulated. It is shown that if the only term in the cost function is transportation energy, and all other conditions are formulated as constraints, substantial energy cost reductions are possible. In particular, the case of energy-optimal speed trajectories is highlighted, and it is shown that for urban driving, energy savings can exceed 50%, assuming complete traffic situational awareness. It is further demonstrated that “urban platooning” is an attractive and viable implementation option for energy-optimal speed trajectories. Exploiting weather and environmental conditions is another crucial topic that is analyzed. The article illustrates key ideas via several simulation examples.