Becoming an electric vehicle engineer can be a really exciting proposition. It offers an opportunity for self-employment within the industry, working for some of the most prestigious companies and possibly even starting your own business. The task of becoming an electric vehicle engineer is not as arduous as you might think; however, there are many skills required for electric vehicle-related employment; so let’s find out what these skills are:
- Vehicle Mechanics
The first skill you need is the ability to read a vehicle’s mechanical system, including how everything is connected and what each part does. You will also need to know how to troubleshoot problems with your vehicle, like a malfunctioning brake light or an engine that won’t start. You also need to know how to work on your car’s electrical system, including troubleshooting issues with its charging port and battery. If you’re interested in working in an EV manufacturing facility, you might want to learn more about electric vehicles or even specialise in one type of vehicle instead of general automotive repair.
- Sensing & actuation technology
It is essential to understand the sensing and actuation technology used in electric vehicles, including ultrasonic sensors, cameras, radar, lidar and GPS. These technologies are used to detect obstacles around the vehicle and determine the location of each wheel with respect to them. This information is used by the computerised control system to calculate the correct amount of torque applied to each wheel at any given time.
- Vehicle & System Integration
The vehicle’s main electrical components, such as the motor and battery, must be integrated with other components such as the steering mechanism, brakes and suspension system in order for the vehicle to function properly. The integration process is critical because it ensures that all parts work together without causing any interference or damage to other components.
Matlab is a programming language and simulation software that allows you to model dynamic systems. It has very powerful tools for signal processing and image processing, as well as some basic signal analysis functions. The advantage of Matlab is that it can be used to solve many problems involving signal generation, frequency domain analysis and time domain analysis.
Simulink is an integrated development environment (IDE) used to simulate physical phenomena. It provides tools for creating models of linear and nonlinear systems, analysing the dynamics of these systems, and simulating the behaviour of these models numerically or analytically. Simulink allows the modelling of electrical circuits using graphical representations such as blocks, components, inputs/outputs, signals etc., which helps understand the system behaviour easily.
- Electric Motor Design
Another important skill is designing electric motors and transformers for different applications — like commercial buses or race cars — and designing control systems for them (like power electronics). All this falls under the holistic subject of electric car design. You might want to learn more about motors and power electronics from other industries if this interests you, but it’s also possible that you’ll end up working at an EV manufacturer’s R&D department, where this could be part of your daily routine!
- Embedded C programming
Embedded C programming is the most important skill to learn if you want to become an electric vehicle engineer. The ECU (Electronic Control Unit) is the main component of a self-driving car, and its operation can be programmed in C language. It is also one of the most complex systems in a vehicle as it controls everything from engine management to suspension and braking systems.