Automotive

Benefiting from HiETA core competencies of thermal management and light weighting, a range of components and systems have been developed for automotive applications.

These range of efficiency-enhancing components for internal combustion engines and range-extending micro gas turbines, to electric motor cooling, full waste heat recovery systems and not to mention various types of lightweight structures.

Internal combustion engine technologies

Centered around technologies for increased efficiency in forced induction engines, HiETA has developed a complementary set of technologies including high-performance water charge air coolers, lightweight and cooled turbine wheels and cooler compressor volutes:

  • Water cooled charge air coolers 30% lighter than even the very best competitive offer.
  • Lightweight and cooled turbine wheels that can operate at up to 200°C higher temperatures than competitor technologies.

Micro Gas Turbine Range Extender technologies

A number of technologies have been brought to market for micro gas turbine range extenders:

  • Recuperators up to ten times smaller than the competition offering high levels of packaging and integration opportunity.
  • Lightweight and cooled turbine wheels that can operate at up to 200°C higher temperatures than competitor technologies.
  • Integrated cooled combustor technologies with fuel pre-heating for improved emissions and reduced package size.

Oil coolers

HiETA has developed technologies for engine and gearbox oil cooling that are approximately half the size of those available elsewhere. These can be integrated together and run from free stream airflow or from the cold-water coolant circuit if desired.

Electric motor and battery cooling technologies

An emerging area, but nonetheless tremendously exciting, is electric motor and battery cooling. Target areas include cooled stators, rotors, and single-stage battery coolers.

Waste heat recovery technologies

HiETA has developed a sophisticated range of waste heat recovery systems based upon an inverted Brayton cycle. Together with collaborative partners Axes Design, the University of Bath and Equipmake, HiETA have developed a prototype system, built and tested it, and validated the thermodynamic model. The prototype system has run on a hot gas stand at Bath University and has generated over a kilowatt of power. Fuel saving/emission reduction benefits across a whole automotive drive cycle have been calculated at between 5-15%.

Lightweight structures

HiETA’s expertise in lightweight structures spans classical lightweight design, through to the use of the latest topology optimisation tool and patent-pending design principles and manufacturing principles for hybrid structures. These technologies have been applied to components such as anti-roll bars and it is anticipated that chassis applications will follow shortly.