Can German engineers brighten the future of diesel?

Posted: April 30, 2018 by oldbrew in Emissions, innovation, Travel

The VW emissions scandal sent the reputation and sales of the diesel car generally into a nosedive, but one German firm has new ideas that aim to reverse its fading fortunes.

Robert Bosch GmbH said its engineers have developed a new diesel-exhaust system that cuts emissions significantly below legal limits taking effect in 2020, reports TechXplore.

Bosch is positioning the diesel technology as a solution to the NOx problem.

In turn, anyone who says there is no future in diesel will find no solace in the words of Bosch Chief Executive Volkmar Denner: “There’s a future for diesel. Soon, emissions will no longer be an issue.”

Diesel critics have had their reasons for concern over diesel. While it emits less CO2 than gasoline-fueled engines, critics point to the technology generating nitrogen oxides, which contribute to harmful smog.

But what about the need to cope with a Plan A if Plan B is not quite ready?

Jonathan Gitlin, Ars Technica automotive editor, wrote that “New engine management software is optimized for low fuel consumption at a lower NOx level. High- and low-pressure exhaust gas recirculation means the engine’s air flow management is more finely controlled, coupled with revised fuel injection to reduce transient NOx peaks.”

So, can the Bosch technology breakthrough save diesel? The Insider Car News made the observation that the “levels of NOx are dramatically cut whether the auto is being driven in urban areas or on motorways, and whether you poodle along or drive like a loon. From 2020, this limit will be cut to 120 milligrams. Equipped with the latest Bosch technology, diesel vehicles will be classed as low-emission vehicles and yet remain affordable.”

One thing is clear; diesel as a climate-friendly option has its supporters. “Despite the behavior of the 2015 scandal and its continued fallout, diesel remains an effective tool in reducing total petroleum consumption, and remains a viable part of a larger strategy to reduce oil dependence,” said Matt Piotrowski in The Fuse.

He said diesel engines have led to environmentally friendly vehicles sold at competitive prices. “Diesel fuel remains a top environmentally-friendly alternative to gasoline because it’s one of the most energy dense fuels available with 30 percent more efficiency than gasoline.”

Continued here.
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See also: For Bosch diesel claim, technical details to come | Automotive News
[includes link to Bosch tech. report]

  1. Saighdear says:

    So we’ll see some more back peddling from our £ball politico ( not the Ars Technica – but the Ars Whole lotovem ! )

  2. J PAK says:

    Simply adding hydrogen to the intake air at 2% permits complete combustion. CO drops to zero. Typical diesel particulates decrease close to zero. Nitrous oxides sometimes go up but with a fuel economy of around 20% the NO per km becomes very small.
    This is old tech thoroughly tested by NASA years ago.

  3. oldbrew says:

    Can German engineers brighten the future of diesel?

    Er…maybe not…

    In latest diesel woes, Audi flags new emissions ‘irregularities’ (Update)
    May 8, 2018

    German luxury carmaker Audi on Tuesday said it had detected “irregularities” in the emissions controls of recent A6/A7 models, prompting it to halt deliveries in the latest twist in the “dieselgate” scandal dogging parent company Volkswagen.

    Audi’s admission came after Germany’s transport ministry said the KBA vehicle licensing authority was investigating suspicions the carmaker had installed a new “illegal defeat device” in some 60,000 A6/A7 models worldwide.