Tailored on-board activated agents production for exhaust aftertreatment performance enhancement

Title of Programme
Sustainable Surface Transport
Financing Code for Project
Project start year - end year 2006 - 2009
Financing organisation
Specific Targeted research Project
Coordinator Centro Ricerche Fiat (CRF)
Other partners
Christian-Doppler-Laboratory for Applied Computational Thermofluid Dynamics (CDL-ACT)
Politecnico di Torino (POLITO)
University of Liverpool (UNILIV)
Aerosol and Particle Technology Laboratory (APTL)
Budget / APTL Budget 2,692,481.17€ / 321,956€
Scientific Manager / Project researcher
Project website
Building on the outcomes of the 5-FP DEXA cluster project, the largest ever-funded in the field by theEC, a focused number of partners selected for their complementary expertise aims here at the selection,test and assessment of a novel, fully integrated active aftertreatment system, compliant with EuroV and beyond regulations, and with NO emission limits for Diesel engines in particular, with reduced fuel penalty(<2%) compared to existing systems but fully compatible with automotive exhaust technology architectureso as to enable easy implementation. This superior performance is pursued via generation of activated chemical agents via two alternative approaches:
  • Catalyst based approach: the activated chemical agents will be produced by reforming diesel fuel bya short-contact-time reactor, and injected in the exhaust line upstream the main catalyst capable ofexploiting them.
  • Energy based approach: two devices are included in this system concept. The first one is an energybased fuel processor, using corona discharge generated plasma to reform the fuel into activespecies. The second is a low-cost microwave resonance based cold plasma generator placed on themain exhaust gas stream and acting directly on gaseous (HC, CO, NOx) and solid (PM) pollutants. The processed gases, mixed with the activated agents stream, will be finally treated by an auxiliary catalyst to complete pollutants abatement. 
Efforts will be made to improve each component of the pursued integrated technology via a rigorousscientific approach, following the guidelines of a typical automotive development to ease technology transfer and industrial exploitation, increase the competitiveness of European automotive industry andinduce new employment opportunities. Lab-scale testing of single devices and pre-prototype assembledsystems will thus be followed by scaling-up and testing of both approaches on engine benches. The mostpromising technology will be finally assessed at a vehicle level.