Since it was established just over a year ago, Kettering University’s Advanced Power Electronics Lab (APEL) in the Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) Department continues to become a major industry research hub on campus.
The latest contract for the lab is from FEV Inc., an international company that specializes in the design and development of internal combustion engines, conventional, electric and alternative vehicle drive systems, energy technology and is a supplier of advanced testing and instrumentation products and services.
FEV Inc. has partnered with Kettering on a three-month contract to design a control board for a 160 kilowatt inverter for a Hybrid Electric Vehicle (HEV). The contract sponsors two graduate students, Chenguang Jiang and Chen Duan, to work on the project.
“This is a very high-powered inverter,” Jiang said. “It would be for a bus or truck.”
The graduate students working on the project under the supervision of Dr. Kevin Bai, assistant professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, will design the control board and develop the software to run it, then test its functionality on smaller motors, gradually moving up to higher powered ones. They began working on the research in September.
Since it opened, Bai and students in the lab have worked on contracts for Chrysler, Magna E-Car, Progressive Dynamics and Tenneco.