Oak Ridge National Laboratory – National Transportation Research Center

Oak Ridge National Laboratory –  National Transportation Research Center

Oak Ridge National Laboratory – National Transportation Research Center

The National Transportation Research Center (NTRC) was established in 2000 to focus on performing early-stage research and development in transportation technologies. The center is a 65,000 sq. ft. facility that integrates a uniquely broad and comprehensive set of capabilities, including (but not limited to) power electronics and electric machinery, energy storage and battery manufacturing, cybersecurity, engines, powertrains and vehicle research. Specifically, below is a list of testing capabilities and relative technologies under NTRC:

1) Power Electronics and Electric Machinery (PEEM) is ORNL’s leading laboratory on advance manufacturing of power electronics packages, electric machinery testing, wireless charging, electric vehicle etc. PEEM leverages capabilities across ORNL including high-performance computing and the adjacent Manufacturing Demonstration Facility to accelerate the design of new components, predict reliability under field conditions and improve lifetime and reliability of new technologies. Equipment Highlights:
- 600-volt, 600-ampere bi-directional DC power supply;
- 100-hp, 10,000-rpm 4-quadrant dynamometer;
- 450-hp, 15,000-rpm water brake dynamometer;
- Ultra high-speed rotational equipment safety tank;
- Programmable environmental oven to 750°C;
- Environmental chamber with humidity control capability from −50 to 180°C;
- Environmental laboratory hood.

2) Battery Manufacturing R&D Facility (BMF) provides scientists the ability to analyze every aspect of battery production, from raw materials and electrode dispersion preparation to finished product and performance testing. BMF is uniquely a part of two ORNL programs and User Facilities—the NTRC and the Manufacturing Demonstration Facility—with the former focusing on energy storage technology R&D specifically for vehicle applications and the latter focusing on roll-to-roll manufacturing R&D. Equipment Highlights:
- 65 m2 (700 ft2) dry space with less than 0.5% relative humidity;
- 65 m2 (700 ft2) space with adjustable 1–15% relative humidity;
- Coating and fabrication line;
- Reconfigurable modules for: Deposition, Drying and consolidation, Winding, folding, and stacking, Joining;

3) Vehicle Systems Integration (VSI) Laboratory offers unique capabilities to evaluate and simulate engines, electric motors and transmission (for both conventional and hybrid powertrains). Equipment Highlights:
- Twin 500-kW AC transient dynamometers capable of up to 3,750 N∙m torque (Acceleration/deceleration rates of up to 3,500 rpm/s; summing gearbox capable of linking dynamometers for powertrain applications, providing up to 20,000 N∙m torque);
- 400 kW (up to 800 V and 600 A) energy storage emulator with stand-alone flexibility to simulate and evaluate different energy storage systems;
- dSPACE hardware-in-the-loop real-time platform for vehicle and subsystem emulation;
- Dual transient emissions measurement system for criteria emissions and particulate matter;
- 250-kW low-inertia double-ended dynamometer capable of up to 650 N∙m torque and 12,000 rpm. The very high acceleration rates available with this dyno would easily mimic the complex energy changes of wave tidal or current energy systems.

Capabilities include:

  • Dynamometer
  • Control Systems Engineering Support
  • Cost Modeling
  • Finite Element Analysis (FEA) Modeling
  • Generator Testing
  • High Performance Computing (HPC)
  • LCOE Modeling
  • Operational Modeling
  • Performance Metrics Analysis
  • Power Performance Modeling
  • Power Take-off Testing
  • Risk Management Plan Development
  • Risk Reduction Planning
  • Technology Performance Level Assessment

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Point of Contact:
Mirko Musa - musam@ornl.gov

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