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How the Internet of Things is driving the future of electric vehicles

Solution Architect for Analytics and IoT, IBM

How the Internet of Things is driving the future of electric vehiclesThe increasing pressure of meeting CAFE standards is a strong motivator for the continued development of battery electric vehicles (BEV) as well as plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEV). These electric vehicles, while supporting this effort, bring a set of unique challenges. Chief among these challenges is the integration into the power grid. In most cases, the existing grid is based on decades-old technology and we frequently see the results of this aging infrastructure in the form of outages and growing cost of maintenance.

Looking to the future of grid modernization and the integration of BEV and PHEV, it is necessary to consider the advancement in vehicle technology and capabilities. In some cases, the BEV has the ability to either deliver power to the connected home power system or back to the grid. This has the effect of potentially creating thousands of new power distribution nodes.

In order to ensure that this system of systems (the grid of tomorrow and the vehicles of tomorrow) can work together for greater efficiency and efficacy, systems thinking and systems engineering is required. Systems thinking is an approach that can help engineers and developers understand the interdependencies and interactions within a system of systems. By modeling the interactions and factoring them into the requirements, design and architecture processes, it should be possible to design systems with a minimal set of unmitigated risks.

Systems engineering, emphasizing the identification of customer needs, collaboration, continuous validation and verification, strategic re-use of knowledge and process governance can all be valuable. The critical concept is to collaboratively analyze the needs, translate them into requirements and then iterate the analysis and translation workflow throughout the development process to make sure every need has been identified and addressed.

To learn more, watch this webinar replay from IEEE Spectrum (sponsored by IBM) and access this informative white paper on Electric vehicles and the challenges of convergence.

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