Temporelli, R., Micheau, P., and Boisvert, M., "Agile and Low-Cost Experimental Evaluation of Fuel Consumption Reduction of a New Electrified Clutch Transmission Virtually Connected to a Vehicle," SAE Technical Paper 2017-01-1096, 2017, doi:10.4271/2017-01-1096.
Automated Manual Transmission (AMT) based on classic electrohydraulic clutch actuation gives high performances and comfort to a recreational vehicle. However, overall power consumption remains high due to the pump efficiency. In addition, the pump is often driven by the vehicle’s engine and thus is continuously working. To address this issue, a new electrified clutch based on electromechanical actuation has been designed and prototyped. In order to evaluate the effective fuel consumption reduction using this new clutch actuator, a low-cost and agile method is presented and used in this paper. Indeed, instead of integrating the clutch actuator in a real vehicle and performing expensive real emission test cycles on a road, this original method proposes to perform accurate semi-virtual emission test cycles. Moreover, the method allows to perform numerous test iterations in a short time. This consists in connecting the prototyped new electric clutch to a virtual vehicle in order to test it as it would be used in a real vehicle. A dedicated real-time rapid prototyping system (Opal-RT) runs the simplified vehicle dynamics and controls clutch algorithms to generate commands for the clutch actuator as a function of the measured clutch responses and as a function of the simulated vehicle dynamics. The method, entitled Actuator-In-The-Loop (AIL), is used to evaluate the fuel consumption of virtual vehicle connected to the prototyped new electric clutch, in compliance with the World-wide Motorcycle Emissions Test Cycle 3.2 (WMTC 3.2). On the same driving cycle, a fuel consumption comparison is achieved with an identical virtual vehicle equipped with a classic electrohydraulic clutch actuator. Finally, this experimental evaluation/comparison by the original AIL method leads to a mean vehicle fuel consumption reduction of 2.95% using the prototyped new electric. For a given vehicle and a given normalized driving cycle, the AIL method allows an accurate, low-cost and agile evaluation of any vehicle’s actuator power consumption.