The U.S. Department of Energy has chosen two research projects from Argonne National Laboratories to be the recipients of grants to be used to improve the fuel efficiency in engines used in light duty vehicles while at the same time, establish collaboration between researchers in government labs with researchers in universities and private industry.
When Secretary of Energy Samuel W. Bodman announced the grants, which total $21.5 million for all the grants nationwide, two of which go to Argonne, he said he expects the researcher to use the money to make very significant progress in improving the performance of the engines.
The grants were awarded under an initiative proposed by President Bush called the 20-in-10 initiative which stands for replacing 20% of the gasoline usage by 2017 promoting the use of clean and renewable fuels combined with improved vehicle efficiency. The total money that will be available to the total of eleven projects country wide will be $43 million when the government grants are combined with the investments from private industry.
The first of the funding is expected to be available this fiscal year and continue through fiscal year 2010. The grants are subject to approval from Congress.
One of the Argonne’s projects will be an attempt to make
flexible-fuel engines more efficient by using advanced engine technology that will extract data every time the engine ignites fuel. This process is called ionization sensing and it provides real time data to engineers who will then use the data to design engines that are smaller and have improved fuel economy.
This project will be a collaborate effort between Argonne and Mahle Powertrain which is a German engine manufacturer as well as Michigan-based Visteon Corporation and Michigan State University. The grant for this project is in the amount of $2.3 million and it will be matched by investment from private industry.
The second project is one that will explore lubrication technology by looking into the use of very small particles of molybdenum disulfide (MoS2) as a lubricant in motor oils. In this project, the researchers from Argonne will be joined by researchers from the University of Arkansas, Caterpillar and nanoMech LLC. The grant for this project will be up to $491,000, which will be matched with money from Caterpillar.
Argonne is the only national laboratory that was selected to receive the grants.
Source: Argonne National Laboratories http://www.newswise.com/p/