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To each driver the appropriate vehicle

A new data logger developed by Fraunhofer researchers simultaneously collects data from vehicles with combustion engines, electric drives, external sensors and location data, and permits the development of new hybrid and electric vehicles


obility is currently undergoing rapid change. Trends such as electromobility, autonomous driving and car sharing are changing how we drive and

opening up newmarkets for the future. Now, researchers fromthe New Drive

Systems NAS project group at the Fraunhofer Institute for Chemical Technology ICT have designed a data logger that provides insights into how vehicles are used. Once installed, it records all the relevant operational data fromthe journeys the carmakes over a period of several weeks ormonths. This helps researchers evaluate in a usage-specific way how a car is used, including characteristics such as route profiles or driving style: for example, when does the driver drivemore cautiously, whenmore aggressively? Analysis allows the researchers to draw a

variety of conclusions about how drivers handle their vehicles – whether they are using a car that is tailored to their needs, for instance. “Collectingmany such profiles allows us to bracket a large number of users into user groups, and to analyse driving data on a group-by-group basis,”


The data logger is based on the Raspberry Pi single-board computer, making purchase affordable for prospective customers. Installation and activation are straightforward and can be done by users themselves. The device reads vehicle data via an OBD-II interface that is already built

in to every vehicle. Bluetooth data transfer between the

OBD-II interface and the data logger is

accomplished bymeans of an adaptermanufactured

by PACE Telematics GmbH, a Karlsruhe-based start-up.

 The data logger designed by the project group for New Drive Systems NAS in Karlsruhe is useful when developing hybrid and electric vehicles and can increase the efficiency of vehicle fleets

says Tobias Burgert, a scientist at Fraunhofer ICT. “These profiles can produce typical driving cycles that can be used in the development of new cars, for instance as part of a virtual test drive during vehicle simulations.”

APPLICATION SCENARIOS Whatmakes the data logger exceptional is that it is configurable; its use is not restricted to cars with a conventional combustion engine. Besides standard powertrain parameters – such as engine speed or heat conductivity (lambda value) – researchers are also able to collect data froman electric drive, for instance the level of the battery charge. This flexibilitymeans the quality of the

analysed signals can be improved. By not recording non-relevant data, prioritised parameters can be recorded at a higher scanning rate. At the same time, data from an external sensor, such as a GPSmodule, an acceleration sensor or a gyro sensor, can be recorded and analysed in combination with pure vehicle data. The data logger’s versatility shouldmake

it appealing to partners fromindustry. One international original equipment manufacturer is known to be using it at the design stage for hybrid vehicles. Another potential area of application is vehicle fleet management. Analyses allow operators to understand exactly how existing vehicles are deployed and enables themto always allocate the right vehicle to a particular driver.Moreover, use scenarios that include route profiles and their respective energy needs allow operators to judge whether future investment in their fleets should go towards the procurement of vehicles with a combustion engine, purely electric vehicles or hybrids. EE

February 2017 /// Environmental Engineering /// 45

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