Energy Efficient Drive Trains (EEDT)

UGent EEDT is a partner of Flanders' Make


Vehicles, industrial machines, ... as a system consist of one or more drive trains which on their turn exist of components and subsystems. Our key focus is on these drive train components and subsystems.


Our mission is
  • understanding the underlying physics occurring in drive train components and subsystems,
  • realising improvements of these components, subsystems and their use,
  • validating and characterising our understanding and improvements.

Our understanding of the phenomena is encoded in models. Both theoretical and experimental modelling techniques are being used. New or advanced models and/or simulation tools or routines are a direct result of these activities.

To improve the components and subsystems, means

  • we are designing novel components with an increased performance, and translate this into design methods,
  • we are developping new control methods for components and subsystems and implement them into the subsystem controllers,
  • we increase the knowledge of components (in use) through parameter identification and virtual sensing, e.g. with the aim of condition monitoring or better control,
  • we study and improve the interaction of a subsystem in the broader context of an overall system.

We characterise and validate these models and improvements in state-of-the-art lab environment, applying as well novel -proprietary- measuring techniques and hardware.


The components and subsystems we focus on are:

  • Electrical machines (permanent magnet, SynRM, axial flux, SRM, ... )
  • Power electronics both hardware (power stage) as well as software (the controller)
  • Mechanical transmissions (e.g. gear boxes, belts, CVTs) and electromechanical transmissions (e.g. EVT)
  • Mechanical energy storage elements
  • Bearings (including large and polymer bearings) and seals
  • Heat exchangers (e.g. finned compact heat exchangers, foam based), immersion cooling and heat pipes
  • Thermal machines (expanders, compressors)
  • Hydraulics

Under the motto of "Energy Efficiency Drives Technology", improving means enhancing the energy efficiency and functional performance. Our knowledge can be applied in several applications including industrial motion applications and vehicle drive trains. We have strong system level knowledge of specific drive trains and systems:

  • Wave energy converters
  • Wind turbines
  • Waste heat recovery systems (ORC and industrial heat pumps)

EEDT is a collaboration of several research groups

Theoretical and experimental research within EEDT is performed both at a fundamental and applied research level. EEDT has carried out research for and with several industrial partners. For the latter it has been cooperating with the Ghent University industrial research cluster Sustainable Energy Technologies and more recently within Flanders Make. Besides fundamental projects and industry funded projects, also Tetra projects related to energy efficiency of drive trains have been used as an active tool to transfer the scientific knowledge, especially to SMEs active in the manufacturing industry.

To ensure the necessary interdisciplinary character and manifold expertise, EEDT is a collaboration of several research groups:

Electrical Energy The research group Electrical Energy is working mainly on electric machine modelling and design (e.g. detailed loss computation and measurement in machines, optimization of efficiency and mass), and on studying the entire drive train including power electronics. Next to this, the group is working on inverse modelling techniques for drive train parameter extractions and the application of such techniques for the design of drive trains.
XiaK Within EEDT the research group XiaK is mainly involved in mechatronics and intelligent sensors for motion control and condition monitoring.
SYSTeMS The research group SYSTeMS performs application driven research envisaging optimization of complex process. This includes developing dynamical models and advanced control methodologies. Within EEDT, we focus on self-learning, distributed, predictive control a.o. for mechatronic applications.
EELAB The research group EELAB (Electrical Energy Laboratory) is active in various areas of electrical energy conversion: Power Systems, Power Electronics and Drive systems and control for electrical machines. Next to this, the group is working on inverse modelling techniques for control of electrical drive trains.
Labo Soete Labo Soete adds expertise to EEDT related to tribology, bearing solutions and condition monitoring.
Applied thermodynamics & heat transfer Applied thermodynamics & heat transfer adds expertise to EEDT related to thermal management of drive trains.
Fluid Mechanics This group is involved in detailed grid code generators for CFD simulations of heat exchangers and/or thermal machines.

EEDT is a partner of Flanders Make

EEDT contributes to the following research priorities of Flanders Make:

More information on EEDT?

Prof. dr. ing. Kurt Stockman
Department of Industrial System and Product Design
Faculty of Engineering and Architecture
Ghent University Campus Kortrijk
Graaf Karel de Goedelaan 5
B-8500 Kortrijk
T + 32 56 24 12 41