Ford Europe Funds CO2 Conversion Experiment
Ford’s European Research and Innovation Center in Aachen, Germany is leading a €3.5 million research project that will determine the viability of using alternative fuels in a manner that could lead to near zero particulate emission diesel cars that will operate with the same kind of power and performance and typical internal combustion engined vehicles.
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The project is being co-funded by the German government over the course of the next three years with the end goal of testing cars that will be the first to run on dimethyl ether and oxymethylene ether. DME is typically used as a propellant in aerosol spray cans, and OME1 is typically used as a solvent. Both chemicals are intended to be used to propel vehicles based upon the Ford Mondeo platform with near-zero emissions.
“The CO2 produced by a car powered by DME from renewable sources could be comparable to the amount generated by a marathon runner covering the same distance—but with performance similar to a diesel powered vehicle,” said Werner Willems, technical specialist , Powertrain Combustion Systems, Ford of Europe. “This is a project that could help place vehicles with a significantly reduced carbon dioxide and particulate emissions on the market at affordable costs.”
Moving forward on the project, the Ford European Research and Innovation center will work in conjunction with: RWTH Aachen University, the Technical University of Munich, FVV, TUEV, DENSO, IAV Automotive Engineering, and Oberon Fuels. It’s worth noting that DME manufactured by Oberon Fuels has been EPA-approved as a biogas-based fuel, which means that this project could ultimately find its way stateside in some form or fashion.
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