Running on Hydrogen
“The publicity surrounding the COP26 conference in 2021 has left the world in no doubt about the transition to sustainable fuels.
While Dolphin N2 ThermoPower technology is a useful way of simply using 20% less diesel (and this is a good thing to do as we transition to a sustainable economy); one of the attractions of the technology has always been its ability to use a range of fuels without compromising efficiency or air quality.
The combustion system has already been demonstrated on methane gas (which can be made from wastes as a carbon-negative fuel), but Hydrogen is emerging as a leading contender for heavy duty road transport.
The Dolphin N2 partnership with the University of Brighton had allowed us to explore how Hydrogen might suit ThermoPower using computer simulations, and the results looked good.
Therefore, in 2021 we adapted our Titan single cylinder research engine to use this fuel, with help from the UK Advanced Propulsion Centre in the form of a research grant.
We have now completed two sets of tests, and sure enough, it works – the same combustion efficiency, and the same low NOx emissions.
Going forward, we are looking to upgrade the Titan with an improved Hydrogen injection system, then apply the findings to a proper multi-cylinder engine within 2022.
CenEx Low Carbon Vehicle show
A highlight of the calendar for anyone working on low and zero carbon vehicles, the CenEx LCV show was held at Millbrook proving ground in September.
As part of the Advanced Propulsion Centre’s “Advanced Route to Market Demonstrator” portfolio, we were invited to show the outputs of the RE-ARMD collaborative project – our Hydrogen-capable, integrated prototype ThermoPower engine.
The show has been very much dominated by electrification, which is a good solution in light duty vehicles but can prove challenging in long-haul, heavy duty applications, where there are fewer good solutions.
Therefore, our ThermoPower engine generated a lot of interest amongst those who understood this problem, a spectrum of visitors from vehicle users to venture capitalists.
The display engine was a beautified non-runner, but we hope to return to this show in future years with a working vehicle.”