Controlled Power Technologies reveals modular hybridization solutions at Engine Expo 2011
Fact is, low CO2 vehicles is an evolving market; and Controlled Power Technologies (CPT) has taken a modular approach so as to be at the forefront; and it appears they are ready for production applications.
As I interviewed Mr. Nick Pascoe, CEO of CPT, I got the impression that his company had a very practical and fast approach to lowering CO2 emissions, rather than just waiting for us folks to come up with more money to buy EVs and hybrids.
There was no hint of any pie-in-the-sky expectations with Pascoe, just real engineering solutions that are evolutionary in the IC engine’s step towards green. Furthermore, most of the technology components are available right now to be integrated by automotive OEMs
His also related a philosophy that said a right balance is one that takes technology and costs into account; not that OEMs do not think of these things. However, the CPT approach is to hybridize the IC engine to improve efficiency at a price that the average driver-owner can afford instead of expensive lithium-ion battery solutions.
The CPT system includes three main components:
1) an induction power assist for a 6-20% CO2 reduction;
2) a mechanical torque assist for a 5-25% CO2 reduction; and,
3) a thermal energy recuperation system for a 6% CO2 reduction.
I was a bit surprised that he did not jump into a split-cycle engine discussion, though, as that’s where the beef of engine efficiency gains live. Nonetheless, CPT is aware of the slow and steady approach of automakers; and the company is aware that an engine that shuts down does not pollute, and any system that enables a capture of thermal energy has the potential to also reduce CO2..
Starting with induction power assist, we have the electric supercharger as a down-sized engine enabler, which can smooth out and fill in on the lower end of the engine RPM range; in other words, improve the low-speed power transition to high boosting from the turbo chargers used on downsized engines. It even functions at the lower power of 12 volt systems that are used today, but can also handle 24V, 36V and 48V systems.
This currently makes CPT as the provider of the only production-ready 12 volt supercharger available as original equipment for passenger car applications.
When I pressed Pascoe about downsizing and its limits, he was very knowledgeable there, too, and quick with rules of thumb. For example, a 30% downsizing of an engine translates roughly into a 15% reduction in CO2. As a writer, I surely can use that simple relation.
Then the product discussion migrated toward the mechanical toque assist with the stop-start system that uses switched reluctance motor technology, as opposed to the expensive and China-controlled permanent magnet motor-generator. This system is called SpeedStart®