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New technology cuts hybrid fuel consumption by third

University engineers have improved the efficiency of PHEVs (plug-in electric vehicles) by more than a third through a new power delivery approach that uses battery electric power at all times while driving, according to Autovista Intelligence.

Most PHEV models work by starting in all-electric mode and switching to hybrid fuel mode when their battery packs are down. This is the easiest approach; however, it is far more efficient to combine the two power sources using blended discharge strategies, which use power from the battery throughout a trip. Though this approach is very complex.

A new research using connected vehicle technology and algorithms inspired by biological evolution and bird flocking energy-saving processes, maximises charging opportunities during PHEV driving and achieves efficiency saving of more than 30% over conventional binary mode control.

In order to optimise energy efficiency over time, the technology also enables individual vehicles to learn how to save fuel from their own historical driving records. The evolutionary and bird flocking algorithms will then enable all vehicles to share their knowledge with each other through connected vehicle technology.

Many industry executives still believe that hydrogen vehicles are the future rather than electric cars and mention the much less developed charging infrastructure compared to electric vehicles as the main factor delaying their distribution. They also point out the problems with electricity recharging infrastructure, with many past investments in charger deployment being futile as they lie unused once the next generation comes along. Hydrogen infrastructure is much more similar to current petrol stations, and so does not suffer the same problems with rapidly becoming outdated.

To communicate with other PHEVs and other EVs, allows drivers to use only the registration/license plate to send messages. Drivers can notify each other when an EV is fully charge and can also share information about road conditions, keeping all the cars connected and up to date.

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