Drawing on our design competence, we carry out new developments of complex systems for our industrial and project partners. For example, we design and produce prototypes to validate new operating principles or layout concepts for traction batteries and electric engines, up to complete systems such as combustion engines and turbines. Our competence starts in the idea and concept phase. We develop drafts and create detailed designs and drawings with a view to production. As a standard we use CATIA V5 in connection with a CAD data management system and an extensive material database in our commissioned projects. To ensure the best possible collaboration with our industrial partners, we apply a top-down design method. This generates a clear and uniform component structure.
To verify and model new designs, we analyze complex components and systems, starting in the concept phase. To assess the behavior of individual components in the system, we use simulation tools for the transfer of heat, material and information, for example "Dymola" or "GT-Suite". The components are modeled physically or in a map-based system. In the field of internal combustion and electric engines, novel cooling concepts are designed and simulated using CFD and CHT modeling. The tool "IPG-CarMaker", which simulates the entire vehicle, enables vehicles to be split into different modular components, the efficiency of which can be assessed during driving. This makes it possible to calculate potential energy consumption advantages of the technologies in driving cycles. For flow, multi-body and structure simulation we also use professional tools according to current industrial standards, e.g. Ansys Fluent, Ansys Mechanical, and SimPack.
We operate cutting-edge testing facilities that complement our expertise in the simulation, design, development and manufacture of components and systems in an extensive test field. Complete measurements of multi-cylinder engines (smaller passenger car size) and single-cylinder test engines can be performed on our engine test stand. On our hybrid test stand the entire electrical system within the drive train is investigated. The drive train comprises a DC-to-DC converter, an inverter and an electrical machine, which can be used, for example, to display changes in the battery voltage according to the state of charge. The hot gas test stand is used to investigate waste heat recovery systems, thermoelectric generators, heat exchangers, turbo generators, exhaust-gas turbochargers and exhaust systems. An extension of this test stand developed at Fraunhofer ICT enables us to investigate the damage behavior of components, or to superimpose high cycle fatigue (HCF) onto thermo-mechanical fatigue (TMF) over time. For this purpose, the hot gas test stand is combined with a high-frequency pulsator, which generates the mechanical load. Our portable exhaust gas measurement system (PEMS) and our data logger make it possible to record real driving data on emissions as well as operating and environmental conditions.