New ORNL system provides hybrid electric autos with power to spare

Feb 04, 2010

An advancement in hybrid electric vehicle technology is providing powerful benefits beyond transportation.

Researchers at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory have designed, fabricated and demonstrated a PHEV traction drive electronics system that provides significant mobile power generation and vehicle-to-grid support capabilities.

"The new technology eliminates the separate charging mechanism typically used in PHEVs, reducing both cost and volume under the hood," said Gui-Jia Su of ORNL's Power Electronics and Electric Machinery Research Center. "The PHEV's traction drive system is used to charge the battery, power the vehicle and enable its mobile energy source capabilities."

Providing more power than typical freestanding portable generators, the PHEV can be used in emergency situations such as power outages and roadside breakdowns or leisure occasions such as camping. Day-to-day, the PHEV can be used to power homes or businesses or supply power to the grid when power load is high, according to Su.

The charging system concept, which is market ready, could also be used to enhance the voltage stability of the grid by providing reactive power, Su said.

The Power Electronics and Electric Machinery Research Center is DOE's broad-based research center helping lead the nation's advancing shift from petroleum-powered to hybrid-electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles. The center's efforts directly support DOE's Vehicle Technologies Program and its goal to provide Americans with greater freedom of mobility and energy security while lowering costs and reducing impacts on the environment.

Explore further: Comfortable climate indoors with porous glass

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

EarthTalk: Are hybrid cars really better for the environment?

Mar 30, 2009

Dear EarthTalk: If you have an electric or plug-in hybrid car, you're paying for electricity rather than gasoline all or most of the time. How does that cost compare to a gas-powered car's cost-per-mile? And since the electricity ...

Plugging into an electric vehicle revolution

Oct 27, 2009

A road trial of plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs), which could one day end up in every Australian driveway, is underway. Over the next three months, staff from Victorian energy distributor SP AusNet ...

Study: Are plug-ins the next wave of hybrid vehicles?

Sep 25, 2007

Is America ready for rechargeable cars? Teams of researchers at the University of Michigan and Pacific Northwest National Laboratory will explore this question and others with $2 million from the U.S. Department of Energy's ...

Recommended for you

Tesla says decision on battery factory months away

15 hours ago

(AP)—Electric car maker Tesla Motors said Thursday that it is preparing a site near Reno, Nevada, as a possible location for its new battery factory, but is still evaluating other sites.

Comfortable climate indoors with porous glass

Jul 31, 2014

Proper humidity and temperature play a key role in indoor climate. In the future, establishing a comfortable indoor environment may rely on porous glass incorporated into plaster, as this regulates moisture ...

Crash-testing rivets

Jul 31, 2014

Rivets have to reliably hold the chassis of an automobile together – even if there is a crash. Previously, it was difficult to predict with great precision how much load they could tolerate. A more advanced ...

Customized surface inspection

Jul 31, 2014

The quality control of component surfaces is a complex undertaking. Researchers have engineered a high-precision modular inspection system that can be adapted on a customer-specific basis and integrated into ...

User comments : 3

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

ormondotvos
not rated yet Feb 04, 2010
Useless vaporware article. For instance, is it more efficient? More KWH/lb of batteries?
NeilFarbstein
Feb 05, 2010
This comment has been removed by a moderator.
VOR
not rated yet Feb 05, 2010
good idea. I would love a car that can power my entire home when power is out, even do so automatically. Ask anyone in hurricane alley.
Skeptic_Heretic
not rated yet Feb 05, 2010
good idea. I would love a car that can power my entire home when power is out, even do so automatically. Ask anyone in hurricane alley.


The hydrogen energy storage vehicles have that capability. I would also like to have my own portable home power source. Especially seeing as our grid is out of date and becomming less stable with each passing year.