Over the past several decades numerous hybrid electric (HE) configurations have been researched and developed for various vehicle applications. The origination of HE vehicle concepts resulted in many new research directions in vehicle dynamics and control and vehicle system design. However, vehicle driveline systems, which distribute power between the drive wheels, have not yet been included in the area of interest nor researched for their potential contribution to the HE power transformation.
This paper presents a work in a new proposed direction, specifically fusion of the HE power conversion process with optimization of power distribution between the drive wheels. A new principle is proposed to optimize power distribution between the front and rear wheels and to minimize slip power losses in tires by maintaining equal tire slippages and, thus, reducing energy consumption; wheel power optimization is algorithmically integrated with the mechanical-electrical-mechanical power conversion in a 4×4 terrain vehicle with a series HE powertrain.