Erik Hoedemaekers MSc
- Electric vehicles
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During the UN climate summit that was held in New York in September 2019, countries from across the globe gathered to discuss actions to combat climate change. Temperatures are on the rise and emissions have to be reduced. This does not only require a shift in our political attitude, but more importantly, our industries need to change. This is easier said than done. In practice, the transition is difficult to make, especially for the transportation industry.
Governments are taking action to reduce emissions with the ultimate goal to become emission-free. A clear example of this is the set-up of so-called zero-emission zones. In these zones the emission standards are defined for a certain area, thereby improving the air quality in that area.
One of the goals of the zero-emission city logistics is to have an emission-free supply of 57 municipalities and provinces in the Netherlands by 2025. However, transport companies using Light Commercial Vehicles (LCVs) such as delivery vans find it hard to comply with these standards. The fully electric alternatives that are currently on the market do not meet their wishes and requirements in the way of reach, load capacity and price.
Studies performed by Arthur D. Little show a 67% increase in the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) when using these fully electric LCVs. For transport companies that is a financial no-go.
XYZ Dynamics aims to solve this problem with the AxLectric™, a retrofit add-on electric powertrain for LCVs that is being developed together with TNO. This electric powertrain can be mounted onto light company vehicles, meaning that large transport companies can continue to perform their work in the future. The AxLectric™ creates a hybrid powertrain, optimising the use of a conventional and an electric powertrain, depending on the location of the vehicle.
With its years of experience in technology development and expert knowledge in various areas, TNO is the right partner to support XYZ Dynamics in this project. XYZ Dynamics is a start-up with a ‘just do it’ mentality, which means it does not have a complete overview of all the next steps. In addition to the research activities, TNO also supports start-ups by making its labs and R&D available and offering its technical expertise. Erik Hoedemakers, TNO: “Supporting Dutch companies is one of TNO’s central roles. Our expertise, facilities and other resources can be vital in exploring the latest innovations.”
Erik Hoedemakers (Scientist Integrator at the Powertrains Research Group of the TNO Traffic & Transport unit) and Annekoos Schaap (TU/e Bachelor student working at XYZ Dynamics) are currently working on battery research in order to find the ideal battery configuration and composition for the AxLectric™ series production. To this end, various battery cells are modelled and tested for specific design requirements that impact their implementation in LCVs.
The cooperation between TNO and XYZ Dynamics is a fine example of how research institutes and start-ups can collaborate in getting better results. Both organisations will continue to work together in order to serve the market and realise zero-emission city logistics. The research results will be published early 2020.
 Arthur D Little. (2016). Battery Electric Vehicles vs. Internal Combustion Engine Vehicles. Retrieved from https://www.adlittle.de/sites/default/files/viewpoints/ADL_BEVs_vs_ICEVs_FINAL_November_292016.pdf
 Arthur D Little. (2019). The German market for battery-electric light commercial vehicles. Retrieved from https://www.adlittle.com/en/german-market-battery-electric-light-commercial-vehicles