University of Waterloo Alternative Fuels Team (UWAFT) has mechanically integrated the DC-DC converter into its hydrogen fuel cell plug-in hybrid electric vehicle. The DC-DC converter is an important powertrain component that ensures the voltage levels of electrical output from the fuel cell stack match the electrical output from the high voltage battery. The converter also regulates the amount of electricity that flows from the either the fuel cell stack or the battery to an electric motor at the front of the vehicle and another at the rear.
Prior to installing the DC-DC converter, the team was limited to running the vehicle in all-EV (battery only) mode. The successful integration of this component has allowed the team to test drive the vehicle in full hybrid mode (battery and hydrogen powered) in preparation for the EcoCAR competition finals only a week away!
Check out this video of the team running its vehicle in full hybrid mode!