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Sector Coupling

Integrated drive architectures support sustainable mobility

Compared to petrol engines, electric vehicles achieve the best CO₂ values when they are charged with 100% renewable energy. Another prerequisite is drive components that are precisely attuned to one another.

27 Jan. 2018
Eduard Heilmayr
HMI-ID01-048he
Integrated drive architectures support sustainable mobility (Chart: Schaeffler)

In the development of customized system solutions for electric powertrains in automobiles, Schaeffler is opting for both hybrid technologies with efficient combustion and purely electric drives, in each case with a focus on the overall energy chain. The objective is an exhaust-free, climate-neutral vehicle operated from renewable energy sources, stressed Professor Peter Gutzmer, Schaeffler’s Technology Director, at the 16th CTI symposium in Berlin. Mobility can only be sustainable if the entire energy chain is taken into consideration, from generation through conversion and storage to technical solutions for a wide variety of powertrains (well to wheel).

The fact that automotive suppliers are extending their perspective to cover all aspects of energy should be seen in the context of the current dynamism in the market for e-mobility and among the providers in the field, not only in terms of storage solutions , energy carriers and charging technology , but also in production processes and particularly in all aspects of the powertrain. Panasonic Automotive recently announced the development of a scalable e-powertrain platform at CES in Las Vegas.

In fact, the efficiency and therefore the savings on consumption of drive architectures with an electric engine, power electronics, battery and complementary combustion engine depend on the optimal interaction of all components . An electric vehicle still emits up to 65% of the amount of CO₂ released by a comparable vehicle with a petrol engine, based on the current energy mix. Only when the electric vehicle is charged with 100% of its electricity from renewable sources do the CO₂ emissions fall to just 3% of those of a conventional vehicle.