DSD to present innovative modelling technique at the SIA Powertrain conference

Innovative modelling approach slashes time for thermal optimisation of e-machines in electric and hybrid vehicles

Drive System Design’s presentation at SIA Powertrain conference to explain how combined modelling technique could enable faster review of concept designs


Powertrain engineering consultancy Drive System Design (DSD) will present a paper detailing a novel technique to improve the thermal modelling of e-machines at this month’s SIA Powertrain Conference in Rouen. The paper explains how credible results for heat transfer can be obtained in just one week, by using a combination of particle-based fluid modelling and steady state Finite Element (FE) thermal modelling. The novel approach, based on the Moving Particle Simulation (MPS) method, is the result of collaboration between Drive System Design and simulation based engineering science consultant, EnginSoft. It allows design iterations to be compared during the concept stage of a new e-machine, enabling enhanced optimisation for e-machines and integrated EV powertrains.

Established methods for fluid flow modelling, such as Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD), take too long to provide results during the rapid iteration of a concept design, especially where bulk heat dissipation is a feature, such as an oil-cooled e-machine. In collaboration with EnginSoft, DSD has reduced the time by using Particleworks, an advanced software solution based on Moving Particle Simulation to generate a Heat Transfer Coefficient (HTC) map for the complex, multi-phase flow, then applied it to an FE model of the e-machine.

“It can take as little as a few days using modest computer hardware to simulate several seconds of real time data, compared to weeks if using finite volume CFD,” said Luca Martinelli, Design Engineer. “By combining the performance benefits of MPS with appropriate modelling simplifications, it is possible to use this method as an iterative design tool, rather than just for final validation.”

The paper, jointly authored by DSD and EnginSoft, describes the growing importance of optimum e-machine cooling as power density increases and the e-machine is integrated into the powertrain. It then explains the thermal modelling approach and motor cooling strategy before presenting the results as predicted temperature maps for different coolant flow rates. It concludes with an assessment of the benefits and proposals for future work.

Entitled ‘Thermal Optimisation of e-drives Using Moving Particle Semi-implicit (MPS) Method’, the paper will be presented as part of the Powertrain Efficiency Improvement session at 15:30 on 16th May, the first day of the conference.

For more information on EnginSoft please visit its website: www.enginsoft.com/uk/