Research Output
An Investigation into Conversion of a Fleet of Plug-in-Electric Golf Carts into Solar Powered Vehicles Using Fuzzy Logic Control
  This paper presents an investigation factors that need to be considered in the design and selection of components for the conversion of a fleet of plug-in electric golf carts at Princess Nourah Bint Abdelrahman University, (PNU), Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA), into solar power energy. Currently, the plug-in electric golf carts are powered by a set of deep-cycle lead-acid battery packs consisting of six units. Solar energy systems (photovoltaics and solar thermal) provide significant environmental benefits and opportunities over the traditional and conventional sources. Therefore, they can contribute positively to many aspects of the built environment and societies. There are many factors that affect the energy generated from the solar panel system. These include type and dimension of the solar panels, weight, speed, acceleration, and other characteristics of the used golf carts, and the energy efficiency of the solar energy system, as main factors that affect the green energy generated to operate the carts. The energy values needed to power the electric cart were calculated and optimized using traction energy calculation and optimized using a fuzzy logic analysis. The fuzzy logic system was developed to assess the impacts of varying dimensions of solar panel, vehicle speed, and weight on the energy generation. Initial calculations show that the replacement cost of the batteries can be up to approximately 75 percent of the operating cost. Together with the indirect cost benefits of achieving zero tail-pipe emission and the comfort of silent operation, the cost of operation using solar energy can be significant when compared with the cost of battery replacement. In order to achieve better efficiency, supercapacitors can be investigated to replace the conventional batteries. The use of fuzzy logic successfully facilitated the optimization of system operation conditions for best performance. In this study, fuzzy logic and calculated data were used as an optimization tool. Future work may be able to use fuzzy logic with experimental data to demonstrate feasibility of utilizing fuzzy logic systems to assess energy generation processes. Future investigations could also include investigation of other factors and methodologies, such as various types of batteries, supercapacitors, solar panels, and types of golf carts, together with different techniques of artificial intelligence to assess the optimum system specifications.

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    04 September 2021

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    New Funder


Saleh, W., Justin, S., Alsawah, G., Malibari, A., & Lashin, M. M. A. (2021). An Investigation into Conversion of a Fleet of Plug-in-Electric Golf Carts into Solar Powered Vehicles Using Fuzzy Logic Control. Energies, 14(17), Article 5536.



golf carts; electric carts; solar energy; conversion of electric carts

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