As Hybrid Automobiles are becoming more popular, an opportunity to further exploit the wasted energy inherent to the internal combustion engine exists. The thermal efficiency of an internal combustion gasoline engine is approximately 25%, meaning that 75% of the energy potential of gasoline is wasted in other thermal outputs, such as through the radiator and exhaust of the engine. The described system would harness a portion of that wasted energy, namely the thermally exited gas molecules (volumetric increase in gas between intake and exhaust of the air/fuel mixture) and convert that energy to useable electricity.
Benefits to consumers:
This design is relatively simple, therefore making implementation by automobile manufacturers inexpensive and thereby reducing impact on the selling price. Further, the system will increase the fuel efficiency of a hybrid gas/electric vehicle during all phases of driving, but most notably during cruise where the standard hybrid system is at its least effective.
Description of the design:
The system (Figure A) utilizes a turbo-charger primary stage (turbine) with an output shaft connected to a gear train, then to a generator. The electrical current is stored in the same battery system as the hybrid system already has in place. The system’s intent is to assist the electrical propulsion end of the hybrid system. The gear train will allow the output torque of the turbo-charger to be matched to the input torque requirements of the generator.
The Exhaust Gas Electrical Assist Process Control Unit (EGEA -PCU) will monitor electrical current from the generator, and exhaust pressure from the engine using the Infineon KP126 series of pressure sensors. Using these inputs, the AGEA-PCU will control electrical current into the battery bank which will control turbo loading and system performance.