University of Wisconsin-Madison Improves Fuel Efficiency in Advanced Diesel Engines

Project Overview
Positive Impact: High-efficiency combustion engines for vehicles.
A university project to improve engine efficiency is being further pursued by engine manufacturers.
Locations: Wisconsin
Partners: University of Wisconsin-Madison
EERE Investment: $3 million
Clean Energy Sector: Sustainable TransportationPDF

In 2012, a team of researchers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison completed an EERE-supported project to develop high-efficiency combustion engines for light- and heavy-duty vehicles. By combining a number of different strategies, the university team showed a potential for a 50% increase in fuel economy for cars and a 20% increase for trucks without the need for emissions after-treatment—a process that is often required to meet emissions standards but decreases fuel efficiency. To reach these results, they used a variety of approaches, such as using multiple fuels, and refining the interactions within and between the engine and other components. Because of its potential, several vehicle and engine manufacturers are further pursuing this technology. In addition, the team created and utilized design and computer simulation tools that will allow other researchers to design low-emission and fuel-efficient engines. The University provided $600,000 for this project.

The Vehicle Technologies Office (VTO) develops and deploys efficient and environmentally friendly highway transportation technologies that will enable America to use less petroleum. These technologies will provide Americans with greater freedom of mobility and energy security, while lowering costs and reducing impacts on the environment.

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