Model Predictive Climate Control for Electric Vehicles
Sammanfattning: This thesis explores the possibility of using an optimal control scheme called Model Predictive Control (MPC), to control climatization systems for electric vehicles. Some components of electric vehicles, for example the batteries and power electronics, are sensitive to temperature and for this reason it is important that their temperature is well regulated. Furthermore, like all vehicles, the cab also needs to be heated and cooled. One of the weaknesses of electric vehicles is their range, for this reason it is important that the temperature control is energy efficient. Once the range of electric vehicles is increased the down sides compared to traditional combustion engine vehicles decrease, which could lead to an increase in the usage of electric vehicles. This could in turn lead to a decrease of greenhouse gas emission in the transportation sector. With the help of MPC it is possible for the controller to take more factors into consideration when controlling the system than just temperature and in this thesis the power consumption and noise are also taken into consideration. A simple model where parts of the climate system’s circuits were seen as point masses was developed, with nonlinear heat transfers occurring between them, which in turn were controlled by actuators such as fans, pumps and valves. The model was created using Simulink and MATLAB, and the MPC toolbox was used to develop nonlinear MPC controllers to control the climate system. A standard nonlinear MPC, a nonlinear MPC with custom cost functions and a PI controller where all developed and compared in simulations of a cooling scenario. The controllers were designed to control the temperatures of the battery, power electronics and the cab of an electric vehicle. The results of the thesis indicate that MPC could reduce power consumption for the climate control system, it was however not possible to draw any final conclusions as the PI controller that the MPC controllers were compared to was not well optimized for the system. The MPC controllers could benefit from further work, most importantly by applying a more sophisticated tuning method to the controller weights. What was certain was that it is possible to apply this type of centralized controller to very complex systems and achieve robustness without external logic. Even with the controller keeping track of six different temperatures and controlling 15 actuators, the control loop runs much faster than real time on a modern computer which shows promise with regard to implementing it on an embedded system.
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