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Energies 2018, 11(12), 3440;

System Design and Energy Management for a Fuel Cell/Battery Hybrid Forklift

Key Laboratory of Electronic Information (Southwest Minzu University), State Ethnic Affairs Commission, Chengdu 610041, China
School of Electrical Engineering, Southwest Jiaotong University, Chengdu 610031, China
Power and Energy Group, University of Queensland, Brisbane, QLD 4072, Australia
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 12 November 2018 / Revised: 30 November 2018 / Accepted: 6 December 2018 / Published: 8 December 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Fuel Cell Systems Design and Control)
Full-Text   |   PDF [16095 KB, uploaded 8 December 2018]   |  


Electric forklifts, dominantly powered by lead acid batteries, are widely used for material handling in factories, warehouses, and docks. The long charging time and short working time characteristics of the lead acid battery module results in the necessity of several battery modules to support one forklift. Compared with the cost and time consuming lead acid battery charging system, a fuel cell/battery hybrid power module could be more convenient for a forklift with fast hydrogen refueling and long working time. In this paper, based on the characteristics of a fuel cell and a battery, a prototype hybrid forklift with a fuel cell/battery hybrid power system is constructed, and its hardware and software are designed in detail. According to the power demand of driver cycles and the state of charge (SOC) of battery, an energy management strategy based on load current following for the hybrid forklift is proposed to improve system energy efficiency and dynamic response performance. The proposed energy management strategy will fulfill the power requirements under typical driving cycles, achieve reasonable power distribution between the fuel cell and battery and, thus, prolong its continuous working time. The proposed energy management strategy is implemented in the hybrid forklift prototype and its effectiveness is tested under different operating conditions. The results show that the forklift with the proposed hybrid powered strategy has good performance with different loads, both lifting and moving, in a smooth and steady way, and the output of the fuel cell meets the requirements of its output characteristics, its SOC of battery remaining at a reasonable level. View Full-Text
Keywords: fuel cell; battery bank; hybrid forklift; buck-boost DC/DC converter; energy management strategy; state of charge fuel cell; battery bank; hybrid forklift; buck-boost DC/DC converter; energy management strategy; state of charge

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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You, Z.; Wang, L.; Han, Y.; Zare, F. System Design and Energy Management for a Fuel Cell/Battery Hybrid Forklift. Energies 2018, 11, 3440.

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