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Seminar: Reducing Complexity and Calibration Effort Through Model Based Predictive Control of Automatic Transmission Clutch-to-Clutch Shifting

Dr. Darrell Robinette, Michigan Technological University
Friday, October 20, 2017, 3:00 pm to 4:00 pm
E100 Scott Lab
201 W. 19th Ave.
Columbus, OH 43210

The mega-trend in automotive propulsion systems is towards increasing levels of electrification, however a significant volume of vehicles are conventional and still have the potential for further reductions in fuel consumption.  Nearly all major automotive OEM’s are engineering a full portfolio of downsized boosted gasoline engines to meet new emissions regulations.  To extract all the fuel economy potential out of these engines, automatic transmission technology has advanced, particularly the number of gears, ratio selection, parasitic losses and controls.  Matching automatic transmissions to new engine designs quickly shows that more forward drive gears are beneficial for fuel consumption as well as performance, however, the trade-off is a nonlinear increase in the complexity of the controls and calibration effort required for a customer accepted product from a drive quality perspective.  The focus of the seminar will be on the recent development of automatic transmission technology and the implementation of reduced order model based clutch-to-clutch shift algorithm that improves the pressure and torque coordination as well as calibration efficiency.  The topic serves as a highlight for the bigger themes occurring within propulsion engineering, namely embedded controls and the fusion of connectivity and advanced designs for energy sufficiency in mobility.  The seminar will conclude with an overview of Michigan Tech’s recent research thrusts in the area of propulsion system component integration, controls development and connectivity and autonomous systems.

About the Speaker

Darrell joined Michigan Technological University’s (MTU) Mechanical Engineering-Engineering Mechanics (MEEM) department in August of 2016 after a nine-year career at General Motor’s Global Propulsion Systems group (formerly GM Powertrain).  Darrell started his GM career in the Noise and Vibration Center at the Milford Proving grounds working on transmission, driveline and hybrid drive units to reduce NVH, improve refinement and maintain durability through experimental testing and analytical modeling.  Next up was automatic transmission controls, in a group called Road-to-Lab-to-Math, developing math and powertrain dynamometer based calibration tools and methodologies that were realized in production programs and improved engineering process efficiency.  Darrell’s last year at GM was spent in the electrification engineering organization, working on system integration, NVH and efficiency of next generation hybrid and electric vehicle propulsion drive units.  Darrell’s research area closely follows his experiences at GM, with an interest in advanced propulsion systems from a design, integration, performance and NVH perspective.  His experiences at GM have varied greatly and include drivetrain torsional modeling, torque converter clutch and launch device dampers, propulsion system analysis for transmission selection to meet 2020/2025 emissions regulations and various development activities on 8, 9 and 10 speed planetary automatic transmissions.  In the area of transmissions, hybrid drive units and drivelines, Darrell has published 20 peer reviewed journal or conference papers and holds 12 granted US patents and has 3 patent applications under review.  He is a member of the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) and serves on the Transmission & Driveline Committee to review papers and organize a session at the SAE World Congress.  Darrell’s research thrusts are in the area of advanced drivetrain testing, modeling and control as well as connectivity and autonomous vehicle systems.  Current research projects and funding are from the Department of Energy’s ARPA-e agency as part of NEXTCAR, General Motors Company, Ford Motor Company and a joint partnership between SAE and GM for a three-year autonomous vehicle competition.

Hosted by Professor David Talbot