Viewing 1 to 21 of 21
Journal Article
John Thomas, Shean Huff, Brian West, Paul Chambon
Abstract Aggressive driving is an important topic for many reasons, one of which is higher energy used per unit distance traveled, potentially accompanied by an elevated production of greenhouse gases and other pollutants. Examining a large data set of self-reported fuel economy (FE) values revealed that the dispersion of FE values is quite large and is larger for hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs) than for conventional gasoline vehicles. This occurred despite the fact that the city and highway FE ratings for HEVs are generally much closer in value than for conventional gasoline vehicles. A study was undertaken to better understand this and better quantify the effects of aggressive driving, including reviewing past aggressive driving studies, developing and exercising a new vehicle energy model, and conducting a related experimental investigation.
Journal Article
Gregory Pannone, Brian Betz, Michael Reale, John Thomas
Journal Article
John Thomas
Abstract A major driving force for change in light-duty vehicle design and technology is the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) joint final rules concerning Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions for model years 2017 (MY17) through 2025 (MY25) passenger cars and light trucks. The chief goal of this current study is to compare the already rapid pace of fuel economy improvement and technological change over the previous decade to the required rate of change to meet regulations over the next decade. EPA and NHTSA comparisons of the model year 2005 (MY05) US light-duty vehicle fleet to the model year 2015 (MY15) fleet shows improved fuel economy (FE) of approximately 26% using the same FE estimating method mandated for CAFE regulations. Future predictions by EPA and NHTSA concerning ensemble fleet fuel economy are examined as an indicator of required vehicle rate-of-change.
Technical Paper
Vitaly Y. Prikhodko, Josh A. Pihl, Todd J. Toops, John F. Thomas, James E. Parks, Brian H. West
Abstract Ethanol is a very effective reductant for nitrogen oxides (NOX) over silver/alumina (Ag/Al2O3) catalysts in lean exhaust environments. With the widespread availability of ethanol/gasoline-blended fuel in the U.S., lean gasoline engines equipped with Ag/Al2O3 catalysts have the potential to deliver higher fuel economy than stoichiometric gasoline engines and to increase biofuel utilization while meeting exhaust emissions regulations. In this work a pre-commercial 2 wt% Ag/Al2O3 catalyst was evaluated on a 2.0-liter BMW lean burn gasoline direct injection engine for the selective catalytic reduction (SCR) of NOX with ethanol/gasoline blends. The ethanol/gasoline blends were delivered via in-pipe injection upstream of the Ag/Al2O3 catalyst with the engine operating under lean conditions. A number of engine conditions were chosen to provide a range of temperatures and space velocities for evaluation of catalyst performance.
Journal Article
John Thomas
Abstract Vehicle manufacturers among others are putting great emphasis on improving fuel economy (FE) of light-duty vehicles in the U.S. market, with significant FE gains being realized in recent years. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) data indicates that the aggregate FE of vehicles produced for the U.S. market has improved by over 20% from model year (MY) 2005 to 2013. This steep climb in FE includes changes in vehicle choice, improvements in engine and transmission technology, and reducing aerodynamic drag, rolling resistance, and parasitic losses. The powertrain related improvements focus on optimizing in-use efficiency of the transmission and engine as a system, and may make use of what is termed downsizing and/or downspeeding. This study quantifies recent improvements in powertrain efficiency, viewed separately from other vehicle alterations and attributes (noting that most vehicle changes are not completely independent).
Journal Article
John Thomas, Shean Huff, Brian West
To quantify the fuel economy (FE) effect of some common vehicle accessories or alterations, a compact passenger sedan and a sport utility vehicle (SUV) were subjected to SAE J2263 coastdown procedures. Coastdowns were conducted with low tire pressure, all windows open, with a roof top or hitch-mounted cargo carrier, and with the SUV pulling an enclosed cargo trailer. From these coastdowns, vehicle dynamometer coefficients were developed which enabled the execution of vehicle dynamometer experiments to determine the effect of these changes on vehicle FE and emissions over standard drive cycles and at steady highway speeds. In addition, two minivans were subjected to coastdowns to examine the similarity in derived coefficients for two duplicate vehicles of the same model. The FE penalty associated with the rooftop cargo box mounted on the compact sedan was as high as 25-27% at higher speeds, where the aerodynamic drag is most pronounced.
Journal Article
John M. Storey, Sam Lewis, James Szybist, John Thomas, Teresa Barone, Mary Eibl, Eric Nafziger, Brian Kaul
Gasoline direct injection (GDI) engines can offer improved fuel economy and higher performance over their port fuel-injected (PFI) counterparts, and are now appearing in increasingly more U.S. and European vehicles. Small displacement, turbocharged GDI engines are replacing large displacement engines, particularly in light-duty trucks and sport utility vehicles, in order for manufacturers to meet more stringent fuel economy standards. GDI engines typically emit the most particulate matter (PM) during periods of rich operation such as start-up and acceleration, and emissions of air toxics are also more likely during this condition. A 2.0 L GDI engine was operated at lambda of 0.91 at typical loads for acceleration (2600 rpm, 8 bar BMEP) on three different fuels; an 87 anti-knock index (AKI) gasoline (E0), 30% ethanol blended with the 87 AKI fuel (E30), and 48% isobutanol blended with the 87 AKI fuel.
Technical Paper
Michael D. Kass, Mark W. Noakes, Brian Kaul, Dean Edwards, Timothy Theiss, Lonnie Love, Ryan Dehoff, John Thomas
Abstract The performance of a 4cc two-stroke single cylinder glow plug engine was assessed at wide open throttle for speeds ranging from 2000 to 7000RPM. The engine performance was mapped for the stock aluminum head and one composed of titanium, which was printed using additive manufacturing. The engine was mounted to a motoring dynamometer and the maximum torque was determined by adjusting the fuel flow. Maximum torque occurred around 3000 to 3500RPM and tended to be higher when using the aluminum head. At slower speeds, the titanium head produced slightly higher torque. For each test condition, maximum torque occurred at leaner conditions for the titanium head compared to the stock aluminum one. Higher efficiencies were observed with the aluminum head for speeds greater than 3000RPM, but the titanium heads provided better efficiency at the lower speed points.
Journal Article
John Thomas, Ho-Ling Hwang, Brian West, Shean Huff
The website provides information such as “window label” fuel economy for city, highway, and combined driving for all U.S.-legal light-duty vehicles from 1984 to present. The site is jointly maintained by the U.S. Department of Energy and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and also offers a considerable amount of consumer information and advice pertaining to vehicle fuel economy and energy-related issues. Included with advice pertaining to driving styles and habits is information concerning the trend that as highway cruising speed is increased, fuel economy will degrade. An effort was undertaken to quantify this “conventional wisdom” through analysis of dynamometer testing results for 74 vehicles at steady-state speeds from 50 to 80 mph. Using this experimental data, several simple models were developed to predict individual vehicle fuel economy and its rate of change over the 50-80 mph speed range interval.
Technical Paper
Shean Huff, Brian West, John Thomas
On-road and laboratory experiments with a 2009 Ford Explorer and a 2009 Toyota Corolla were conducted to assess the fuel consumption penalty associated with air conditioner (A/C) use at idle and highway cruise conditions. Vehicle data were acquired on-road and on a chassis dynamometer. Data were gathered for various A/C settings and with the A/C off and the windows open. At steady speeds between 64.4 and 113 kph (40 and 70 mph), both vehicles consumed more fuel with the A/C on at maximum cooling load (compressor at 100% duty cycle) than when driving with the windows down. The Explorer maintained this trend beyond 113 kph (70 mph), while the Corolla fuel consumption with the windows down matched that of running the A/C at 121 kph (75 mph), and exceeded it at 129 kph (80 mph). The incremental fuel consumption rate penalty due to air conditioner use was nearly constant with a slight trend of increasing consumption with increasing vehicle (and compressor) speed.
Technical Paper
John Thomas, Brian West, Shean Huff
Proper maintenance can help vehicles perform as designed, positively affecting fuel economy, emissions, and overall driveability. This paper addresses the issue of whether air filter replacement improves fuel economy. Described are measured results for increasing air filter pressure drop in turbocharged diesel-engine-powered vehicles, with primary focus on changes in vehicle fuel economy but also including emissions and performance. Older studies of carbureted gasoline vehicles have indicated that replacing a clogged or dirty air filter can improve vehicle fuel economy and, conversely, that a dirty air filter can be significantly detrimental to fuel economy. In contrast, a recent study showed that the fuel economy of modern gasoline vehicles is virtually unaffected by filter clogging due to the closed loop control and throttled operation of these engines. Because modern diesel engines operate without throttling (or with minimal throttling), a different result could be anticipated.
Technical Paper
John Thomas, Brian West, Shean Huff, Kevin Norman
Proper maintenance can help vehicles perform as designed, positively affecting fuel economy, emissions, and the overall drivability. This effort investigates the effect of one maintenance factor, intake air filter replacement, with primary focus on vehicle fuel economy, but also examining emissions and performance. Older studies, dealing with carbureted gasoline vehicles, have indicated that replacing a clogged or dirty air filter can improve vehicle fuel economy and conversely that a dirty air filter can be significantly detrimental to fuel economy. The effect of clogged air filters on the fuel economy, acceleration and emissions of five gasoline fueled vehicles is examined. Four of these were modern vehicles, featuring closed-loop control and ranging in model year from 2003 to 2007. Three vehicles were powered by naturally aspirated, port fuel injection (PFI) engines of differing size and cylinder configuration: an inline 4, a V6 and a V8.
Technical Paper
John M. E. Storey, Teresa L. Barone, John F. Thomas, Shean P. Huff
Gasoline direct injection (GDI) engines can offer better fuel economy and higher performance over their port-fuel-injected (PFI) counterparts, and are now appearing in increasingly more U.S. and European vehicles. Small displacement, turbocharged GDI engines are replacing large displacement engines, particularly in light-duty trucks and sport utility vehicles, in order for manufacturers to meet the U.S. fuel economy standards for 2016. Furthermore, lean-burn GDI engines can offer even higher fuel economy than stoichiometric GDI engines and have overcome challenges associated with cost-effective aftertreatment for NOx control. Along with changes in gasoline engine technology, fuel composition may increase in ethanol content beyond the current 10% due to the recent EPA waiver allowing 15% ethanol. In addition, the Renewable Fuels Standard passed as part of the 2007 Energy Independence and Security Act (EISA) mandates the use of biofuels in upcoming years.
Technical Paper
Paul Chambon, Shean Huff, Kevin Norman, K. Dean Edwards, John Thomas, Vitaly Prikhodko
Lean Gasoline Direct Injection (LGDI) combustion is a promising technical path for achieving significant improvements in fuel efficiency while meeting future emissions requirements. Though Stoichiometric Gasoline Direct Injection (SGDI) technology is commercially available in a few vehicles on the American market, LGDI vehicles are not, but can be found in Europe. Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) obtained a European BMW 1-series fitted with a 2.01 LGDI engine. The vehicle was instrumented and commissioned on a chassis dynamometer. The engine and after-treatment performance and emissions were characterized over US drive cycles (Federal Test Procedure (FTP), the Highway Fuel Economy Test (HFET), and US06 Supplemental Federal Test Procedure (US06)) and steady state mappings. The vehicle micro hybrid features (engine stop-start and intelligent alternator) were benchmarked as well during the course of that study.
Technical Paper
Keith Knoll, Brian West, Shean Huff, John Thomas, John Orban, Cynthia Cooper
Tests were conducted during 2008 on 16 late-model, conventional vehicles (1999 through 2007) to determine short-term effects of mid-level ethanol blends on performance and emissions. Vehicle odometer readings ranged from 10,000 to 100,000 miles, and all vehicles conformed to federal emissions requirements for their federal certification level. The LA92 drive cycle, also known as the Unified Cycle, was used for testing as it was considered to more accurately represent real-world acceleration rates and speeds than the Federal Test Procedure (FTP) used for emissions certification testing. Test fuels were splash-blends of up to 20 volume percent ethanol with federal certification gasoline. Both regulated and unregulated air-toxic emissions were measured. For the aggregate 16-vehicle fleet, increasing ethanol content resulted in reductions in average composite emissions of both NMHC and CO and increases in average emissions of ethanol and aldehydes.
Technical Paper
John F. Thomas, Samuel A. Lewis, Bruce G. Bunting, John M. Storey, Ron L. Graves, Paul W. Park
Previously reported work with a full-scale ethanol-SCR system featuring a Ag-Al2O3 catalyst demonstrated that this particular system has potential to reduce NOx emissions 80-90% for engine operating conditions that allow catalyst temperatures above 340°C. A concept explored was utilization of a fuel-borne reductant, in this case ethanol “stripped” from an ethanol-diesel micro-emulsion fuel. Increased tailpipe-out emissions of hydrocarbons, acetaldehyde and ammonia were measured, but very little N2O was detected. In the current increment of work, a number of light alcohols and other hydrocarbons were used in experiments to map their performance with the same Ag-Al2O3 catalyst. These exploratory tests are aimed at identification of compounds or organic functional groups that could be candidates for fuel-borne reductants in a compression ignition fuel, or could be produced by some workable method of fuel reforming.
Technical Paper
Michael D. Kass, John F. Thomas, Dane Wilson, Samuel A. Lewis, Andy Sarles
A high-resolution corrosion probe was placed within the airhorn section of the exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) loop of a heavy-duty diesel engine. The corrosion rate of the mild-steel probe elements was evaluated as a function of fuel sulfur level, EGR fraction, dewpoint margin, and humidity. No significant corrosion was observed while running the engine using a No. 2 grade, < 15ppm sulfur diesel fuel; however, high corrosion rates were observed with No. 2 diesel fuel (∼350 ppm sulfur) while condensing water in the EGR loop. The rate of corrosion on the mild steel elements increased with increasing levels of sulfate in the condensate. However, the engine conditions influencing the sulfate level were not clearly identified in this study.
Technical Paper
Michael D. Kass, John F. Thomas, Samuel A. Lewis, John M. Storey, Norberto Domingo, Ron L. Graves, Alexander Panov, Paul Park
NOx emissions from a heavy-duty diesel engine were reduced by more than 90% and 80% utilizing a full-scale ethanol-SCR system for space velocities of 21000/h and 57000/h respectively. These results were achieved for catalyst temperatures between 360 and 400°C and for C1:NOx ratios of 4-6. The SCR process appears to rapidly convert ethanol to acetaldehyde, which subsequently slipped past the catalyst at appreciable levels at a space velocity of 57000/h. Ammonia and N2O were produced during conversion; the concentrations of each were higher for the low space velocity condition. However, the concentration of N2O did not exceed 10 ppm. In contrast to other catalyst technologies, NOx reduction appeared to be enhanced by initial catalyst aging, with the presumed mechanism being sulfate accumulation within the catalyst. A concept for utilizing ethanol (distilled from an E-diesel fuel) as the SCR reductant was demonstrated.
Technical Paper
John M. E. Storey, John F. Thomas, Samuel A. Lewis, Thang Q. Dam, K. Dean Edwards, Gerald L. DeVault, Dominic J. Retrossa
As part of a multi-agency study concerning emissions and fuel consumption from heavy-duty diesel truck idling, Oak Ridge National Laboratory personnel measured CO, HC, NOx, CO2, O2, particulate matter (PM), aldehyde and ketone emissions from truck idle exhaust. Two methods of quantifying PM were employed: conventional filters and a Tapered Element Oscillating Microbalance (TEOM). A partial flow micro-dilution tunnel was used to dilute the sampled exhaust to make the PM and aldehyde measurements. The work was performed at the U.S. Army's Aberdeen Test Center's (ATC) climate controlled chamber. ATC performed 37 tests on five class-8 trucks (model years ranging from 1992 to 2001). One was equipped with an 11 hp diesel auxiliary power unit (APU), and another with a diesel direct-fired heater (DFH). The APU powers electrical accessories, heating, and air conditioning, whereas a DFH heats the cab in cold weather. Both devices offer an alternative to extended truck-engine idling.
Technical Paper
Michael D. Kass, John F. Thomas, John M. Storey, Norberto Domingo, James Wade, Glenn Kenreck
A certification diesel fuel and blends containing 10 and 15 volume % ethanol were tested in a 5.9-liter Cummins B Series engine. For each fuel blend, an 8-mode AVL test cycle was performed. The resulting emissions were characterized and measured for each individual test mode (prescribed combination of engine speed and load). These individual mode results are used to create a weighted average that is designed to approximate the results of the Heavy-Duty Transient Federal Test Procedure. The addition of ethanol was observed to have no noticeable effect on the emission of NOx but produced small increases in CO and HC. However, the particulate matter was observed to decrease 20% and 30% with the addition of 10% and 15% ethanol, respectively.
Technical Paper
John F. Thomas, Robert H. Staunton
The question of whether increasing the fuel economy of light-duty natural gas fueled vehicles can improve their economic competitiveness in the U.S. market, and help the US Department of Energy meet stated goals for such vehicles is explored. Key trade-offs concerning costs, exhaust emissions and other issues are presented for a number of possible advanced engine designs. Projections of fuel economy improvements for a wide range of lean-burn engine technologies have been developed. It appears that compression ignition technologies can give the best potential fuel economy, but are less competitive for light-duty vehicles due to high engine cost. Lean-burn spark ignition technologies are more applicable to light-duty vehicles due to lower overall cost. Meeting Ultra-Low Emission Vehicle standards with efficient lean-burn natural gas engines is a key challenge.
Viewing 1 to 21 of 21


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