LDRD Seminar Series: ‘Novel Bio-derived Fuel Additives to Improve Vehicle Efficiency’
Principal Mechanical Engineer Scott Goldsborough (ES) will discuss his Laboratory-Directed Research and Development (LDRD) sponsored work at the LDRD Seminar Series presentation Tuesday, Feb. 7, 2017.
“Novel Bio-derived Fuel Additives to Improve Vehicle Efficiency” will begin at 12:30 p.m. in the Bldg. 203 Auditorium. All are welcome to attend.
The fuel economy of the nation’s vehicle fleet has a significant impact on petroleum consumption, operating costs and well-to-wheel emissions, as well as strategic national objectives such as energy security and sustainability. While many project that the adoption of alternative power scenarios, such as full vehicle electrification, will inevitably yield gains in these areas, the feasibility of implementing such significant alternations is many years away. Improvements to internal combustion engines hold promise in the near term to address these concerns. Even small enhancements can significantly impact the nine million barrels of gasoline used every day in the U.S.
Modern, spark-ignition engines are knock-limited, meaning that engine parameters which dictate efficiency such as compression ratio, intake pressure and spark advance, are constrained by the knocking (or autoignition) tendency of the fuel. Low temperature combustion (LTC) engines, which represent an alternative approach to achieving high fuel economy with very low emissions, are limited by the difficulty in controlling autoignition timing and rates of heat release over the entire engine operating map.
This project leverages expertise across three divisions (ES, CSE and BIO) towards the development of novel bio-derived fuel additives which can be used (at ~1% blending levels) to modulate the autoignition characteristics of conventional gasoline. Fundamental experiments are conducted to probe the perturbative characteristics of a range of additive molecules with engine tests used to validate the performance. Modeling provides insight into the chemical kinetics of fuel-additive interactions. Experiments are also conducted to formulate high-yield, cost-effective pathways for converting negative-value biological feedstocks such as cellulosic waste streams, via fermented bio-products into the targeted fuel additives.