Design of a conductive hands-free charging system for electrical vehicles
Frank| Mechanical engineering
My dad is a mechanic and he has his own company. On Saturdays I worked with him on different machines like cars, but also tractors, etc. Here my interest in cars and the automotive industry started. When I was orienting myself for a graduation project, I contacted my supervisor Nick Rosielle from TU/e to ask him if he knew a company where I could do a project in automotive. He invited Ron, who is now my colleague at Prodrive Technologies, at the TU/e to introduce the conductive hands-free charging project to us. I chose the project, since it is one of my personal interests and it was a very challenging project. The system needs to deliver a certain amount of force to realize a conductive connection between the connector and the charging inlet. Once the system is connected, the system should deliver a holding force (to keep the connection) and be compliant in different directions at the same time. Compliance is needed, since the vehicle can move due to passengers who get in/out, loading/unloading of luggage. The system should be able to connect to SUV car models and sportscar models, which means that the stroke of the system should be sufficiently large. Once the system is in rest position, it should be possible to drive over it with a car tire, so the housing of the system should be designed sufficiently stiff. Every Monday during the project I had a meeting with Nick Rosielle about the progress of the project. We discussed about different design choices and generated new ideas. At Prodrive I had one or two progress meetings during the week with Ron where we also discussed about the design of the system. If I had specific technical questions I could walk to an engineer’s office and ask him/her if they could help me. They were always willing to help me which was very nice!
My colleagues were always willing to help me which was very nice!
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