Society Spotlights: April 2014

Helping IEEE become the go-to place for electrified transportation

7 April 2014

Some 3.8 million plug-in electric and hybrid vehicles could be sold annually worldwide by 2020, according to Navigant Research, a market researcher that analyzes global clean-technology markets. These vehicles wouldn’t be possible without the work of various IEEE groups, whose members have been busily developing their underlying technologies. These include electric machines and drives, motion controls, energy storage systems, and embedded electronics.

Sixteen societies and two technical councils are involved in one aspect or another of electric transportation. Coordinating the activities of these IEEE units is the IEEE Transportation Electrification Initiative, which is managed by the IEEE Future Directions Committee, the organization’s R&D arm. Launched in 2012, the initiative set out to position IEEE as a thought leader and go-to resource when it comes to technologies for electric and hybrid vehicles. The initiative also hopes to help the various groups speak as “one IEEE,” according to the initiative’s chair, Senior Member Lee Stogner.

IEEE Aerospace and Electronic Systems Society
Along with its focus on the organization, systems engineering, design, development, integration, and operation of complex systems for space, air, and ocean, the society also deals with systems for ground transportation. These systems include navigation, avionics, mobile electric power and electronics, radar, sonar, telemetry, military, law-enforcement, automatic test, simulators, and command and control.


IEEE Circuits and Systems Society
Aims to advance the theory, analysis, design, and implementation of circuits and systems, along with the tools for doing so. The work of its members spans theory, applications, and architectures as well as the systems for implementing algorithms for signal and information processing.


IEEE Communications Society
Focuses on all aspects of communications, including applications that use signals to transfer voice, data, images, and video information.


IEEE Computational Intelligence Society
Develops software to support large-scale integration into the power grid of hybrid and plug-in electric vehicles (EV). Interests include tools for optimizing large-scale systems under dynamic and uncertain environments, as can occur with the widespread integration of hybrid vehicles into power systems. Members of the society have helped develop techniques for optimum control and optimization of EV components, processes, and systems.


IEEE Consumer Electronics Society
The scope of technologies embraced by the society—once limited to television, home audio systems, and appliances—has expanded to reflect the vast influence of modern electronics on consumer products. Many emerging technologies in consumer electronics can now be found in devices and networks that facilitate the distribution of information to intelligent automotive navigation and control systems.


IEEE Control Systems Society
Dedicated to the research, development, and application of automation and control systems to hybrids and EVs.


IEEE Industry Applications Society
Focuses on the theory and practice of electrical and electronic engineering in the development, design, manufacture, and application of electrical systems, devices, and controls.


IEEE Industrial Electronics Society
Focuses on the application of electronics and electrical sciences for the enhancement of industrial and manufacturing processes. Society activities address the latest developments in intelligent and computer control systems, robotics, and automation.


IEEE Instrumentation and Measurement Society
Involved in power generation and distribution, communications, and transportation. For example, members develop methods for constantly monitoring EV batteries and high-voltage systems to ensure safety and drivability.


IEEE Intelligent Transportation Systems Society
Focus includes development, control, sensing, and battery-charging issues in hybrids and EVs. Research on real-time information transmittal for in-vehicle energy management, route planning, and energy pricing is published in the society’s journals. One of the society’s annual conferences, the International Conference on Vehicle Electronics and Safety, emphasizes the latest advances in EVs, plug-in hybrid EVs, and hybrid vehicles.


IEEE Power & Energy Society
Embraces research, development, planning, design, construction, maintenance, and installation and operation of equipment, structures, materials, and power systems for safe, sustainable, economic, and reliable conversion, generation, transmission, distribution, storage, and use of electric energy.


IEEE Power Electronics Society
Interests include the development of power electronics technology that encompasses the effective use of electronic components, the application of circuit theory and design, and the development of analytical tools for efficient electronic conversion, control, and conditioning of electric power. PES also sponsors the annual Solar Splash, a solar boating competition. 


IEEE Product Safety Engineering Society
Addresses safety engineering for equipment and devices used in scientific, engineering, industrial, commercial, and residential arenas.


IEEE Reliability Society
Assures that a system will perform its intended function for the required time in a given environment, with the ability to test and support itself through its total life cycle. 


IEEE Robotics and Automation Society
Focuses on systems incorporating sensors and actuators that operate autonomously or semiautonomously in cooperation with humans. Automation research emphasizes efficiency, productivity, quality, and reliability of systems operating autonomously, often in structured environments over extended periods.


IEEE Sensors Council
Involved with the theory, design, fabrication, manufacturing, and application of devices for sensing and transducing physical, chemical, and biological phenomena, with emphasis on the electronics and physics aspects of sensors and integrated sensor-actuators.


IEEE Systems Council
Focuses on areas associated with the engineering of systems processes and methodologies, modeling, simulation, and integration. The council is also concerned with aspects of robust design, safety, security and usability.


IEEE Technical Committee on RFID
The committee focuses on RFID, near field communication (NFC), and energy harvesting technology. RFID/NFC is the secret enabler in the vehicle from the keyless ignition to the toll tags in your car. It provides the ability for the electric vehicle to recharge as you drive. Radio frequency in the air also enables the transfer of information in the vehicle from your mobile devices. RFID/NFC is all around the vehicle, inside and out, silently enabling the technology of today to act like the technology of tomorrow.


IEEE Vehicular Technology Society
Involved with the electrical and electronics engineering required to design and develop the new breed of hybrids and EVs. To get its members up to speed, the society has developed a series of DVDs based on lectures at various venues given by experts from the automotive industry and academia. The DVDs cover the design of circuits, power electronics, propulsion batteries, and motors, as well as requirements for vehicular emissions, performance, and durability.

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