Joint project HyInnoICE


Development and setup of a demonstrator vehicle with a highly efficient hydrogen combustion engine.


Key Info

Basic Information

01.10.2021 to 30.09.2024
Hydrogen Technologies



Kevin Kluge

Drive Systems Group Manager


+49 241 80-27506




Mobility is a basic need of our society and thus plays a vital role in the vision of a decarbonized future. The transport sector must achieve CO2 neutrality as quickly as possible to counteract climate change. Drive systems based on renewable hydrogen (H2) can significantly contribute to this. The fuel cell and the hydrogen combustion engine are the spearheads of the most promising technologies. Compared to the fuel cell, the internal combustion engine offers a more compact and lighter design of the overall system, highly dynamic operating possibilities without compromising performance, and the continued use of existing production and maintenance capacities as well as cost advantages. It is important to note that even for internal combustion engines, the most advanced technology components are not yet optimized for hydrogen-based operations and require extensive research and development.

The HyInnoICE project is part of the Clusters 4 Future Hydrogen, in which hydrogen technologies from all areas of the value chain are to be sustainably transferred into application.


Project Goals and Methods

Sponsored by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research

This project aims to explore the feasibility of utilizing the H2 combustion process in automobiles and determine its limitations. The results will be utilized to gather valuable information on design parameters, costs, and control strategies. Such information is crucial for the successful implementation of H2 combustion engines in the future.

As part of our research project, the Institute of Automatic Control aims to create reduced models that can be effectively used in a model-based control. Our model synthesis is based on fundamental thermodynamic investigations of a single-cylinder test engine, with less emphasis on detailed descriptions of physical and thermodynamic processes. The challenge lies in balancing computational effort and model accuracy to cover all relevant system dynamics. Our approach combines physically motivated and data-driven methods to achieve a real-time capable and sufficiently accurate model.

Our second objective is to establish a control strategy that ensures safe, robust, and dynamic operation of the hydrogen combustion engine. Given the numerous actuators available for targeted interventions and sensors for monitoring the combustion process, we prefer using model-based control approaches. These methods allow for systematic consideration of multi-variable systems with cross-couplings between the manipulated and controlled variables, dead times, and operational limitations. We are pursuing various concepts to operate the engine across the entire map range from partial load to full load. Our aim is to operate the engine with a lean air ratio in the partial load range and stoichiometric operation in the entire load range. For transient switching between the two modes, we require additional functions and control algorithms that consider air path dynamics, lambda control, and component protection. We intend to implement these on a model basis to handle the multivariable system. To parameterize the models and calibrate the functions, we require stationary and dynamic measurements on the engine test bench. We also aim to efficiently implement the control algorithms to ensure real-time operation on the rapid control prototyping (RCP) hardware. To achieve this, we will develop suitable formulations for the models and optimization problems.


Innovations and Perspectives

Implementing the HyInnoICE project is associated with a significant boost in technology maturity. Thus, the prerequisites are created to transfer the developed technology modules into first-series applications at the participating companies within a manageable period of time after project completion. This goal is supported by a calibrated and real-time capable RCP system, which can control the H2 combustion and all components of the air and exhaust gas path efficiently and safely.

Project partners Associated partners
Robert Bosch GmbH


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