Ultracapacitors Utilization for Automotive Applications

Z. Pfof, P. Vaculík


This paper describes the basic properties of ultracapacitors and a converter for ultracapacitors with application zero-voltage switching (ZVS). Because of the very high efficiency of the ultracapacitor, the efficiency of the converter for ultracapacitors also has to be high; otherwise, the converter reduces efficiency of the whole drive unit. Further, the paper describes the drive unit concept for the CityEl electric vehicle, with the use of ultracapacitors in cooperation with a fuel cell. This co-operation with ultracapacitors is useful for the supply unit as a fuel cell, which cannot deliver peak power in dynamic conditions while maintaining its nominal efficiency. However, this poses no problems for ultracapacitors.There is also a description of the basic principles of soft switching using zero-voltage and zero-current switching together with a comparison of the power losses between hard and soft switching. 


ultracapacitor; converter for ultracapacitors; soft switching; zero-voltage switching; fuel cell

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ISSN 1210-2709 (Print)
ISSN 1805-2363 (Online)
Published by the Czech Technical University in Prague