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DieselNet: Internal Combustion Engine & Emission Technology

Engine & emission technology online—since 1997

The Log

9 December 2019: IAV has developed a Rankine cycle waste heat recovery (WHR) system they claim is capable of utilizing significantly more waste heat from diesel engines compared to previous approaches. Simulation data suggests that 8.0 to 9.3% BSFC reduction is possible under some operating conditions compared to 3.3 to 3.6% with more conventional approaches [more ...]

5 December 2019: Updated Technology Guide paper on NOx Sensors includes a new section on FET-based sensors and other edits throughout the text.

4 December 2019: The European Environment Agency (EEA) released the European Environment—State and Outlook (SOER) 2020 report, a major assessment of the state of environment issued once every five years (see also The Guardian). Since the previous, 2015 edition of the report, the state of the environment has worsened and most of the 2020 targets will not be achieved. The EEA points out that the current crisis is not limited to climate change, but is a multi-faceted predicament that also includes biodiversity loss, air and water pollution, overconsumption of natural resources, and other factors. “To be clear, Europe will not achieve its sustainability vision of ‘living well, within the limits of our planet’ simply by promoting economic growth and seeking to manage harmful side-effects with environmental and social policy tools,” states the report. As Europe is reaching the limits of what could be achieved by gradual means—such as by gradual efficiency gains and small cuts to GHG emissions—the EEA is calling for urgent systemic solutions to meet future targets and ambitions.

29 November 2019: New Technology Guide paper discusses Heavy-Duty Natural Gas Engines.

27 November 2019: Summary of the technical sessions from the 17th FAD Conference held on 6-7 November 2019 in Dresden, Germany [more ...]

26 November 2019: The UN Environment Programme (UNEP) published the 2019 edition of its annual Emissions Gap Report, which presents an assessment of the GHG emission reduction pledges (Nationally Determined Contributions, NDC) under the Paris Agreement. The conclusions are consistent with those in the previous editions of the report: The current NDC pledges are insufficient to meet the Paris Agreement targets to keep global temperature rise this century to below 2°C, and preferably below 1.5°C, above pre-industrial levels. If the current NDCs are implemented, the global mean temperature would still rise by about 3.2°C by 2100. The UNEP report estimates that to achieve the 1.5°C target, emissions would have to be reduced by 7.6% a year between 2020-2030. To achieve the 2°C target, emissions would have to be reduced by 2.7% a year. Assuming a continuing global economic growth, this level of emission reduction appears unlikely. For comparison, global CO2 emissions were reduced by just over 2% in 2009, as a result of the Global Financial Crisis and the economic slowdown that ensued, only to increase by 4.5% in 2010.

25 November 2019: Germany’s automobile industry is facing the existential threat of exceedingly strict European Union CO2 emission requirements, which are only seemingly grounded in environmental policy, warns Prof. Hans-Werner Sinn in an editorial in The Guardian. European emission regulations (as well as those in other countries) impose mandatory targets for tailpipe CO2 emissions—a metric that is not suitable for comparing electric powertrains with internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles. Electric vehicles also emit substantial amounts of CO2, the only difference being that emissions are released at the power plant. In addition, enormous amounts of fossil fuels are used to produce EV batteries in China and elsewhere, offsetting the supposed emissions reduction. By 2018, the average emissions of newly registered cars in the EU were slightly above 120 g/km, which is approximately twice the 2030 target (estimated at 59 g/km). The implication is that if an automaker’s production is split evenly between electric vehicles and ICE vehicles that conform to the present average, the 59 g/km target will be just within reach. If a company cannot produce electric vehicles and remains at the current average emissions level, it will have to pay a fine of about €6,000 per car. According to a recent study by Joanneum Research, a mid-sized electric passenger car in Germany must drive 219,000 km before it starts outperforming the corresponding diesel car in terms of CO2 emissions. The problem is that passenger cars in Europe last for only 180,000 km, on average. Worse, according to Joanneum, EV batteries don’t last long enough to achieve that distance in the first place. Unfortunately, drivers’ anxiety about the cars’ range prompts them to recharge their batteries too often, at every opportunity, and at a high speed, which is bad for durability. In comparisons based on the overall European energy mix, EVs tend to fare slightly better than diesels, due to the huge share of nuclear energy from France.

22 November 2019: The US EPA expects to release a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking in 2020 for their Cleaner Trucks Initiative. A heavy-duty engine NOx emission standard between 0.015 and 0.030 g/bhp-hr and a heavy heavy-duty diesel engine useful life period of up to 850,000 miles/18 years are considered, effective from 2027 [more ...]

21 November 2019: The THIESEL Conference on Thermo- and Fluid Dynamic Processes in Direct Injection Engines to be held in Valencia, Spain, in September 2020 has issued a Call for Papers [more ...]

15 November 2019: Updated Technology Guide paper on Variable Valve Actuation (VVA) now covers variable valve duration, illustrated by the Hyundai CVVD technology.

14 November 2019: What is the long term potential of US shale resources? The “official” LTO production forecasts might underestimate the looming capital investment barrier faced by the industry [more ...]

9 November 2019: Feature: Liebherr’s SCRFilter emission technology for Stage V nonroad engines [more ...]

31 October 2019: For your reading pleasure, a summary report from the ASME ICE 2019 Fall Technical Conference held on October 20-23, 2019 in Chicago, USA [more ...]

28 October 2019: The Worldwide Fuel Charter (WWFC) Committee—representing engine and vehicle manufacturers grouped in ACEA, Auto Alliance, EMA and JAMA—released the first edition of the Worldwide Fuel Charter for Methane-Based Transportation Fuels [more ...]

27 October 2019: Updated summary of Japanese fuel economy standards now reflects light-duty vehicle fuel economy targets through 2030.

4 October 2019: A group of 37 globally prominent scientists representing the International Journal of Engine Research (IJER) have published an editorial on the future of the internal combustion engine [more ...]

27 September 2019: Summary of the technical sessions from the 6th International Conference Aftertreatment & Sensors held in Munich, Germany on September 19-20 [more ...]

25 September 2019: It is time to register for the 17th FAD Conference: The Challenge—Exhaust Aftertreatment, to be held on November 6-7, 2019 in Dresden, Germany. As in previous years, the Conference features a strong technical program, covering topics ranging from the energy basis for future mobility to emission aftertreatment, fuel quality issues, and emission measurement.

20 September 2019: New Technology Guide paper discusses potential Energy Alternatives that may be available beyond oil—food for thought for the Global Climate Strike action that started today.

12 September 2019: Updated Business Directory Page of ESW America—Testing Services reflects the current engine and vehicle emission testing capabilities of the company.

7 September 2019: Is it possible to enjoy both economic growth and environmental sustainability? A new report by the European Environmental Bureau reviews the empirical and theoretical literature to assess the validity of such hypothesis. The conclusion is both overwhelmingly clear and sobering: not only is there no empirical evidence supporting the existence of a decoupling of economic growth from environmental pressures on anywhere near the scale needed to deal with environmental breakdown, but also, and perhaps more importantly, such decoupling appears unlikely to happen in the future [more ...]

6 September 2019: The US EPA and the DOT have sent a letter to Mary Nichols, the chairwoman of the California Air Resources Board, warning her that the recent California agreement with four major automakers to reduce GHG emissions appears to be inconsistent with federal law [more ...]

5 September 2019: Added summary of Colombian emission standards for on-road vehicles and engines.

Diesel Engine & Emissions

The diesel engine is the most efficient power plant among all known types of internal combustion engines. Heavy trucks, urban buses, and industrial equipment are powered almost exclusively by diesel engines all over the world. For the foreseeable future, the world’s transportation needs will continue to rely on the diesel engine and its gasoline counterpart. However, both engine technologies have been evolving to meet two major challenges: lower emissions and increased energy efficiency.

Internal combustion engines are significant contributors to air pollution. In response, clean diesel technologies with near-zero emissions of NOx and PM have been developed and introduced in regions with the most stringent emission standards. As this trend spreads to other parts of the world, the environmental focus has shifted to climate changing emissions and energy efficiency. The environmental benefit of low greenhouse gas emissions, traditionally associated with the diesel engine, is no longer sufficient. To meet future greenhouse gas and fuel economy regulations, new technologies are being developed—low temperature combustion, waste heat recovery, powertrain electrification, to name a few—that further increase the efficiency not only of the diesel engine powertrain but the entire vehicle as well. Under low-carbon regulatory policies, the scope for potential improvements is no longer limited to engines and vehicles, but also includes life cycle effects of fuel production and vehicle manufacture.

DieselNet, the only information service exclusively devoted to internal combustion engines and emissions, is an internet knowledge base for technical and business information on diesel engines, fuels, emissions and technologies required by the clean and efficient diesel engines of the future.