Facilitating Electric Propulsion of Autonomous Vehicles Through Efficient Design of a Charging-Station Network
Samuel Labi, Professor of Civil Engineering – Purdue University
Director – NEXTRANS
Associate Director – Center for Connected and Automated Transportation (CCAT)
Mohammad Miralinaghi, Research Associate – Purdue University
For a vehicle to be truly autonomous, it needs to be propelled by a power type that does not require human effort to transfer the power into the vehicle manually. For this reason, electric propulsion is increasingly being considered as a viable and practical alternative to the internal combustion engine (ICE). Another benefit of electric propulsion is the reduction of vehicular emissions. Electric automated vehicles (EAVs) that have zero-occupancy can simply be sent to electric charging stations for recharge. This research proposes a framework for efficient design of a network of electric charging stations that can promote AVs. In this framework, the transportation planner seeks to gradually install electric charging stations at repurposed existing gas stations and/or at new locations. The framework considers the anticipation of an ICEV-to-AV transition phase where the existing gas stations will be decommissioned gradually in favor of electric charging stations. The framework will consider two trip-making scenarios: intracity trips that capture traffic congestion, and intercity trips that are characterized by long distances.
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