Research Project Information

Research Project Summary Information

Starter-Alternator System with A/C Drive Through (ST8484-1)

Advanced Energy Conversion, LLC


Pending the commercial availability of a suitable hybrid-electric taxi vehicle, NYSERDA has funded the development of a belt-driven starter-alternator, i.e., an upsized replacement for the standard alternator and with the added ability to act as a motor, including acting as a very robust starter. This allows vehicles to operate using an “idle-stop” strategy, whereby the engine stops when the vehicle is waiting in traffic and instantly restarts when the driver’s foot leaves the brake pedal. This approach can significantly cut fuel consumption, but the major potential users, such as the NYC Taxi and Limousine Commission, are concerned about the unavailability of air conditioning (A/C) when the vehicle is not moving. The Contractor, Advanced Energy Conversion (AEC) has defined a concept for a starter-alternator coupled to a mechanical interface, allowing the starter-alternator to drive the A/C compressor during idle-stop, engine-off periods. The power during this mode would be provided by inverted battery power. The concept is based on the Contractor’s previous experience with belt-driven systems of this type. Design, prototype development and testing are required in order to convert this system concept into an acceptable product for taxi and vehicle after-market applications.

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Project Description

Development of the starter alternator system, including the mechanical means for air conditioner ride-through, requires designing an integrated system, including detailed design of the electric machine, the controls, mechanical interface(s), and the packaging details for target vehicles. The project will also consist of fabricating two prototype systems, and conducting both the bench and in-vehicle testing on a 2004 model year light pickup truck. Commercialization planning will be accomplished to address both manufacturing and marketing plans necessary for market introduction.


The proposed system could cut fuel consumption of vehicles such as taxis by at least 20%, with accompanying drops in emissions.

Project Results

The Contractor decided not to pursue further development of the technical concept, without totally finishing the tasks, due to lack of supporting funds to accomplish technology demonstration. A Final Report on work that was actually accomplished was submitted to document the work done.


Advanced Energy Conversion, LLC
C/O Ioxus Inc 18 Stadium Circle
Oneonta, NY 13820

Principle Investigator

Dave Torrey

Universities Involved


Project Type:

Product Development

Technologies Types:

Light Duty

NYSERDA Contact Information

Frank Ralbovsky


R&D -Transport & Power Systems

Contract Details

Start Date: 1/11/2010
Project Status: Active
Contract Number: ST8484-1

Last Updated: 5/18/2012