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All-Electric Propulsion for Heavy-Duty Urban Aerial Vehicles

Webinar - Online
Alicia Tomaszewski – tec@ieee.org
Dr. Yue Cao

Abstract:  As we are heading towards all-electric intercity passenger aircraft, emerging Urban Aerial Vehicles (UAV’s), unmanned or manned, serve as stepping stones to demonstrate start-of-the-art electrification technology. We are already familiar with light-weight drones in cinematography, entertainment, and industrial inspections. However, technology challenges still exist in larger scale (10x-100x) commercial applications such as package delivery drones or passenger flying taxis. These sci-fi like urban aerial mobility solutions are not far from reality but already in much desire in this COVID era when non-human-contact quick point-to-point transports can serve many needs. Though under the aviation category, UAV’s exhibit many different characteristics from more electric aircraft (MEA), and thus face unique design requirements.

In this webinar, we will dive deep into such heavy-duty all-electric UAVs, and particularly their propulsion systems. The webinar will break into several subtopics: 1) Unique technology needs and challenges in such power electronics based powertrains; 2) Propulsion system architectures and multi-physics modeling; 3) A machine-learning enabled automated and efficient system design approach; 4) A fully integrated fault-tolerant motor drive; 5) High-conversion high-voltage power converters; 6) Future opportunities in component/system design and broader energy impact.

Biography:  Dr. Yue Cao is an Assistant Professor in the Energy Systems Group at Oregon State University (OSU). Before joining OSU, he was a research scientist on the propulsions team at Amazon Prime Air in Seattle, WA. He has been a power electronics engineer intern with special projects group at Apple Inc., Cupertino, CA; Halliburton Company, Houston, TX; Flanders Electric, Evansville, IN; and the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, TN. His research interests include power electronics, motor drives, and energy storage with applications in transportation electrification, renewable energy integration, and energy efficient buildings.


Dr. Cao received M.S. (2013) and Ph.D. (2017) in Electrical Engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign (UIUC), and B.S. (2011) in electrical engineering and mathematics from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. He received the Myron Zucker award from the IEEE Industry Applications Society (IAS) in 2010. He was a Sundaram Seshu Fellow at UIUC in 2016, where he was a James M. Henderson Fellow in 2012. He is a recipient of Oregon State Learning Innovation Award for transformative education in 2020.

Dr. Cao is the Tutorials Chair of ECCE 2021, and he was a Local and Industry co-Chair of ECCE 2018. He was a Panel Chair on More Electric Aircraft at ITEC 2019. He was the Corresponding Technical Programs Chair of 2016 IEEE Power and Energy Conference at Illinois (PECI). In 2020, he established a joint IEEE PES/PELS Chapter at OSU. He is currently an Associate Editor for IEEE Transactions on Transportation Electrification.

Event Recording
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