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Use Electric Wastegate Actuator on Aftermarket Turbo?

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Lots (most?, all?) OEM turbos come with electric wastegate controllers; virtually all (all?) aftermarket turbos come with pneumatic actuators controlled by either a spring alone or a 3-port or 4-port boost solenoid. Most aftermarket turbos seem to sidestep the issue altogether using an external waste gate.

Has someone worked out the issues in adapting an electric wastegate actuator to aftermarket turbos with an IWG such as the BW EFR?



You need an h bridge to control them. The motors are similar to electronic throttle control.

Interested, too.

Has anybody had any success using one of the Mahle EWG ones? I have one at home but not tried finding out how to control them yet.

The manufacturer of my ECU is willing to add this functionality to the software if I can tell him how to control it i.e. provide a specification.

I contacted Mahle but never gotten any feedback.


Who is the manufacturer of your ecu?

Maxxecu in Sweden

You've got two options: try to partner with a supplier of electric wastegate actuators to see if they will give you some technical specifications, or try to reverse engineer it. I think partnering is going to be difficult... aftermarket volume is so low, and they might want a lot of money for their help.

There is Master's thesis by R Holmbom done under the supervision of Volvo engineers that you can download online. https://liu.diva-portal.org/smash/get/diva2:937113/FULLTEXT01.pdf

Most of it is a lot of very detailed modeling that isn't really important for the simplified controls needed on an aftermarket ECU. But check out sections 3.4 and 4.5 . Basically you need to:

reverse engineer the position sensor (shouldn't be that hard) so you understand signal vs position curve

reverse engineer what PWM signal you need to send to move the motor in either direction.

Have a position-based control algorithm, similar to an electronic throttle, where the ECU targets a valve position and uses a closed loop control system to get the right duty cycle to maintain the position.

Have some kind of end stop learning (max open and max closed position)

Have a boost control algorithm that associates wastegate position with boost. Target boost table, then target valve position vs target boost table, and then valve position feedback to achieve the boost.

It's an extra layer on top of conventional pneumatics wastegates.

Yes, basically they operate in much the same way as a DBW throttle plate.

Anyone got pinouts for the Mahle actuator? Current draw?

Check the electrical section of the service manual for the vehicle it came on.

Any news to that. Has anybody successfully used electric Wastegate actuator in the aftermarket? is it worth to swap from a pneumatic one?

I have

^ How are you controlling it and have you tried any interesting control strategies?

It requires an H-bridge to drive it. The ecu is directly controlling it. LPC series ecu


I haven't done any interesting control strategies yet. Just have the Boost control piped into the H-Bridge to control the actuator.

https://www.facebook.com/TechworxTuning You can contact me though there if anyone wants to chat.

I forgot to mention this method of boost control requires a pressure sensor in the intake piping.

Why is a boost pressure sensore before throttle body needed?

The same reason you run a normal wastegate boost source before the throttle body. If you don't, you run the risk of over spinning the turbocharger.

I've already done e-wastegate controlled by MAP. I just monitored boost before throttle body, to get sure boost isn't going crazy before TP. I tried also boost control, controlled by boost press instead of MAP. Results have been similar, except it was harder to control integral windup. Part load torque control was also bit worse.

I' wouldn't apply my findings as a general rule, think it is depending on application what works better.

Probably comes down to what control the software gives you. A pressure sensor is still needed before the throttle body to make sure you aren't over spinning the turbo.

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