Cummins Demonstrates Road Map for High-Efficiency Diesel

thumb.jpgCummins, Inc. (NYSE:CMI), has demonstrated an ISX heavy-duty truck engine with an increased Brake Thermal Efficiency (BTE) of 45 percent while reducing emissions to levels associated with the future introduction of 2007 EPA-mandated technology. Particulate Matter emissions were reduced to 0.01 gram/hp-hr by utilizing a Cummins Particulate Filter, while oxides of nitrogen were lowered to 1.2 gram/hp-hr using in-cylinder combustion control.
As reported in the joint Cummins/DOE press release: "The work provides a foundation for the further development of engines capable of meeting EPA 2007/10 emissions. Current heavy-duty engines meeting the EPA 2002 regulation typically achieve a BTE level of 41 percent".

Brake Thermal Efficiency represents in percentage terms the amount of energy converted from diesel fuel into useful mechanical work by the engine. Achieving higher fuel efficiency also results in reduced CO2 greenhouse gas emissions from the engine.

OK so that really is pretty dry, for even the most analytical of TreeHuggers. Wait, wait...don't click out yet. Translation: Mileage for big trucks can and will get better. Most important, today's hazardous particulate emissions from diesel engines can actually go down to acceptable levels. No more smoggy buses and dump trucks (eventually).

Most curiously, we got the standard promulgated in the US before Europe even attempted it. Why? A good guess is that US engine makers realized it would get them market share globally. Collaborating with USEPA made it a community standard with world market power. Let do that dance again and again.

by: John Laumer

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