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Project

ALIVE will develop directly exploitable knowledge on materials and design concepts which offer a high potential for significantly reducing the weight of vehicles for affordable application to high productions volumes, focusing on next generation Electric Vehicles (EVs).

Specifically ALIVE has set a target of achieving a 30 % + 20 % weight reduction for the untrimmed vehicle body together with a 25 - 30 % weight reduction of the hang-on parts, chassis and main interior sub-systems. ALIVE strives to generate substantial, tangible innovation in terms of vehicle design, materials, forming & joining technologies, simulation & testing and includes an exceptionally ambitious physical validation activity that will not only deliver a full structural demonstrator of all modules addressed but which will also include destructive crash and durability testing executed on the assembled modules including the entire body.


Motivation

Affordable weight reduction is one key factor for a more intensive market introduction of electric vehicles. For an EV with 200 km range (and with battery capacity of 200 – 300 Wh/kg) the allowable costs of weight saving would be round 8 €/kg [ECK10]. For above mentioned 8 €/kg (= 10 $/kg) more than 40 % of lightweighting seem to be obtainable [HOF12].
However, further weight reduction leads to an exponential cost increase. Avoiding such cost increase is the main challenge of the ALIVE project.

Sources:
[ECK10] Eckstein, L.; Hartmann, B.; Schmitt, F.: Lightweight Measures for Electric Vehicles. ATZ worldwide Magazine, Issue 11/2010, Springer Vieweg, Wiesbaden
[HOF12] Hofer, J.; Wilhelm E.; Schenler, W.: Optimal Lightweighting in Battery Electric Vehicles, EVS26, Los Angeles, California, May 6-9. 2012

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Objectives

Achieve a significant reduction in weight of electric cars destined for mass production with minimal additional costs:

  • BiW with integrated battery housing: approx. 45 %
    (i.e. from 355 kg to 200 kg)
Source:Volkswagen Group Research, Manuel Kurz, K-EFFG/L, 2013
  • Chassis: approx. 25 %
    (i.e. from 260 kg to 200 kg)
  • Hang-on parts: approx. 25 %
    (i.e. from 100 kg to 75 kg)
  • Interior components: approx. 30 %
    (i.e. from 100 kg to 70 kg)

  • Development of design and simulation capabilities
  • Building an extensive, novel, fast and reliable Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) simulation tool
  • Demonstration by means of a full scale validator that integrates body-in-white, closures, heavy interior components and chassis / suspension subassemblies
  • Demonstration of real crash performance on module level using destructive testing
  • Vehicle non-destructive experimental testing results validating the virtual performance validation of all key performance criteria
  • Advancements in joining technologies aimed at realistic industrial solutions that can reliably and economically join a variety of materials

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More details on the projects homepage http://www.project-alive.eu

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