The prototype of the most eco-friendly car has been revealed

They reduced tire wear-related FPM pollution by 70 to 80 percent.
Can Emir


The prototype of the most environmentally friendly road vehicle has been revealed.

The German Aerospace Center (DLR) and the engineering firm HWA have created and successfully tested a road vehicle that permits transportation almost entirely without emissions as part of their Zero Emission Drive Unit - Generation 1 (ZEDU-1) project.

The prototype electric car, known as the Zero Emission Drive Unit - Generation 1 (ZEDU-1 for short), has undergone successful road testing and has been almost emissions-free, making it the most eco-friendly road vehicle in use worldwide.

“For us, people’s health and an unpolluted environment are paramount. With the prototype ZEDU-1 presented today, we are showing solutions for how we can be on the road in the future with virtually no emissions. Our concept is highly efficient, extremely compact, suitable for everyday use and versatile. It can be transferred directly to future cars and commercial vehicles,” said Prof. Tjark Siefkes, Director of the DLR Institute for Vehicle Concepts in Stuttgart.

The prototype passed the field test

The project team has pioneered entirely new technological ground. There is no longer the traditional disc brake in the wheel. Instead, a multi-disc brake is used as a novel solution to remove the brake from the wheel and integrate it into the closed electric motor gearbox unit. The braking energy can be almost totally recovered when used in conjunction with specially designed high-performance electronics. As a result, it is possible to create the drive unit very compactly and minimize the size of the brake components. A bath of oil is used to immerse the discs. The oil is regularly circulated through a filter and cleansed after the abrasion enters it. The group also created an induction brake for the ZEDU-1 prototype in addition to the mechanical multi-disc brake. This induction brake uses magnetic fields to produce a braking action and causes nearly no abrasion until it comes to a stop.

Moving the brakes from the wheel to the engine makes more room for innovative technical techniques that significantly minimize tire wear. The framework for this is wheel housing. The closed wheel of the ZEDU-1 is aerodynamically designed to generate negative pressure while in motion. As a result, the tire abrasion concentrates on one area. A fan unit at the front of the vehicle removes the particles and filters them through a hoover-like mechanism. In this way, the car only emits pure air.

According to the DLR, the ZEDU-1 successfully caught and secured all tiny particles and microplastics created by tire and brake wear at speeds of up to 31 mph (50 kph) during its initial testing. Above that speed, the device could reduce tire wear-related FPM pollution by 70 to 80 percent. The technology will next be improved upon in conjunction with company partners to be ready for mass production.

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