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Hybrid Electric Vehicle

Published on Feb 12, 2016


Have you pulled your car up to the gas pump lately and been shocked by the high price of gasoline? As the pump clicked past $20 or $30, maybe you thought about trading in that SUV for something that gets better mileage. Or maybe you are worried that your car is contributing to the greenhouse effect. Or maybe you just want to have the coolest car on the block.

Currently, there is a solution for all this problems; it's the hybrid electric vehicle. The vehicle is lighter and roomier than a purely electric vehicle, because there is less need to carry as many heavy batteries. The internal combustion engine in hybrid-electric is much smaller and lighter and more efficient than the engine in a conventional vehicle. In fact, most automobile manufacturers have announced plans to manufacture their own hybrid versions.

How does a hybrid car work? What goes on under the hood to give you 20 or 30 more miles per gallon than the standard automobile? And does it pollute less just because it gets better gas mileage. In this seminar we will study how this amazing technology works and also discuss about TOYOTA & HONDA hybrid cars.


Any vehicle is hybrid when it combines two or more sources of power. In fact, many people have probably owned a hybrid vehicle at some point. For example, a mo-ped (a motorized pedal bike) is a type of hybrid because it combines the power of a gasoline engine with the pedal power of its rider.

Hybrid electric vehicles are all around us. Most of the locomotives we see pulling trains are diesel-electric hybrids. Cities like Seattle have diesel-electric buses -- these can draw electric power from overhead wires or run on diesel when they are away from the wires. Giant mining trucks are often diesel-electric hybrids. Submarines are also hybrid vehicles -- some are nuclear-electric and some are diesel-electric. Any vehicle that combines two or more sources of power that can directly or indirectly provide propulsion power is a hybrid.

The most commonly used hybrid is gasoline-electric hybrid car which is just a cross between a gasoline-powered car and an electric car. A 'gasoline-electric hybrid car' or 'hybrid electric vehicle' is a vehicle which relies not only on batteries but also on an internal combustion engine which drives a generator to provide the electricity and may also drive a wheel. In hybrid electric vehicle the engine is the final source of the energy used to power the car. All electric cars use batteries charged by an external source, leading to the problem of range which is being solved in hybrid electric vehicle.


You can combine the two power sources found in a hybrid car in different ways. One way, known as a parallel hybrid, has a fuel tank, which supplies gasoline to the engine. But it also has a set of batteries that supplies power to an electric motor. Both the engine and the electric motor can turn the transmission at the same time, and the transmission then turns the wheels.

Hybrid Electric Vehicle


Figure 1 shows a typical parallel hybrid. We'll notice that the fuel tank and gas engine connect to the transmission. The batteries and electric motor also connect to the transmission independently. As a result, in a parallel hybrid, both the electric motor and the gas engine can provide propulsion power.

Another way of combining the power sources found in a hybrid car is by series hybrid. In a series hybrid (Figure 2 above) the gasoline engine turns a generator, and the generator can either charge the batteries or power an electric motor that drives the transmission. Thus, the gasoline engine never directly powers the vehicle. Take a look at the diagram of the series hybrid, starting with the fuel tank, and you'll see that all of the components form a line that eventually connects with the transmission.


Components used in hybrid electric vehicles are given below:

• Gasoline engine - The hybrid car has a gasoline engine much like the one you will find on most cars. However, the engine on a hybrid will be smaller and lighter, and is more efficient than the engine in a conventional vehicle, because the engine runs at a relatively constant speed, and does not need to provide direct power for acceleration, which is the biggest reason for large engines. Use advanced technologies to reduce emissions.

• Fuel tank - The fuel tank in a hybrid is the energy storage device for the gasoline engine. Gasoline has a much higher energy density than batteries do. For example, it takes about 1,000 pounds of batteries to store as much energy as 1 gallon (7 pounds) of gasoline.

• Electric motor - The electric motor on a hybrid car is very sophisticated. Electric motor used in hybrid cars are usually dc series motor since it’s versatile and ease with which a variety of speed-torque characteristics can be obtained, and wide range of speed control is also possible in this. Advanced electronics allow it to act as a motor as well as a generator. For example, when it needs to, it can draw energy from the batteries to accelerate the car. But acting as a generator, it can slow the car down and return energy to the batteries.

• Generator - The generator is similar to an electric motor, but it acts only to produce electrical power. It is used mostly on series hybrids. Generator used in hybrid electric vehicle is alternator since cooling is easy and hence maximum output and also the output/weight ratio is higher than that of the DC generator.

• Power split device –The power split device is a clever gearbox that hooks the internal combustion engine and D.C.motor together. The power split device helps the vehicle to accelerate to a speed of about 15km/hr before switching on the gasoline engine. The engine starts only after the vehicle attains a certain speed. Once the engine starts it operates on a narrow speed band. The power split device allows the engine to stay in its most efficient load and speed range most of the time.

• Batteries - The batteries in a hybrid car are the energy storage device for the electric motor. Unlike the gasoline in the fuel tank, which can only power the gasoline engine, the electric motor on a hybrid car can put energy into the batteries as well as draw energy from them. The batteries used in HEV is Ni-Cd cells since its lighter than the lead acid cells and its also mechanically strong and can stand very rough use.

• Transmission - The transmission on a hybrid car performs the same basic function as the transmission on a conventional car. Some hybrids, like the Honda Insight, have conventional transmissions. Others, like the Toyota Prius, have radically different ones, which we’ll talk about later.

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