Simple device boosts vehicle mileage dramatically

September 26th, 2008 - 12:28 pm ICT by IANS  

Washington, Sep 26 (IANS) Steeply rocketing fuel prices have prompted a physics professor to develop a simple device that boosted fuel efficiency by 20 percent in field tests - an electrically charged tube that can be attached to the fuel line of a car’s engine near the fuel injector. Powered by the vehicle’s battery, the device creates an electric field that thins the fuel, so that smaller droplets are injected into the engine. That leads to more efficient and cleaner combustion than a standard fuel injector, said the developer, Rongjia Tao, professor of physics at Temple University.

Six months of road testing in a diesel-powered Mercedes-Benz car showed that the device increased highway fuel mileage from 50 km per gallon to 60 km per gallon, a 20 percent boost, and a 12-15 percent gain in city driving, according to a university statement.

“We expect the device will have wide applications on all types of internal combustion engines, present ones and future ones,” Tao wrote in his study published in Energy & Fuels, a bi-monthly journal of the American Chemical Society.

Further improvements in the device could lead to even better mileage, he suggested, and cited engines powered by petrol, biodiesel, and kerosene as having potential use of the device.

Temple has applied for a patent on this technology, which has been licensed to California-based Save The World Air (STWA), an environmentally conscientious enterprise focussed on the design, development, and commercialisation of revolutionary technologies targeted at reducing emissions from internal combustion engines.

According to Joe Dell, vice-president marketing for STWA, the company is currently working with a trucking company near Reading, Pennsylvania, to test the device on diesel-powered trucks, where he estimates it could increase fuel efficiency as much as six-12 percent.

Dell predicts this type of fuel efficiency could save tens of billions of dollars in the trucking industry and have a major impact on the economy through the lowering of costs to deliver goods and services.

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