Horani, M. and Rawashdeh, O., "Towards Improved Automotive HVAC Control through Internet Connectivity," SAE Technical Paper 2015-01-0370, 2015, doi:10.4271/2015-01-0370.
Traditional Heat Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) control systems are reactive by design and largely dependent on the on-board sensory data available on a Controller Area Network (CAN) bus. The increasingly common Internet connectivity offered in today's vehicles, through infotainment and telematic systems, makes data available that may be used to improve current HVAC systems. This includes real-time outside relative humidity, ambient temperature, precipitation (i.e., rain, snow, etc.), and weather forecasts. This data, combined with position and route information of the vehicle, may be used to provide a more comfortable experience to vehicle occupants in addition to improving driver visibility through more intelligent humidity, and defrost control. While the possibility of improving HVAC control utilizing internet connectivity seems obvious, it is still currently unclear as to what extent. In the process of identifying such use cases, a study is conducted to understand the current weather data available by various internet service providers. Hence, this paper focuses on investigating potential use cases for utilizing internet data connectivity in an automotive HVAC module. The considered use cases are then evaluated in terms of feasibility and viability from the perspective of consumer, car manufacturer, and technological complexity. The prototyping of some of the more viable ideas is also examined, along with the defining of an initial test plan to measure the performance of the prototype system.