Great Plains Diesel Technologies
707 East Lincoln Way
Ames, Iowa 50010 USA
Office: 515.233.2962
Fax: 515.232.2240

Design Benefits

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Improve Fuel Economy By Up To 50%

Fuel economy improvement - perhaps up to 50% - is achieved by improving the thermal efficiency of the engine itself using injector rate shaping. While today's modern multiple-injection per combustion event injectors are a clear improvement over older on/off solenoid technology, maximum possible thermal efficiency of the diesel engine is still left untapped.

The key to maximum performance of internal combustion piston engines is to match the speed of the motor mechanism to lightning fast combustion. Rudolph Diesel recognized this when he wrote: "...The combustible is added in such a way, that no increase in temperature of the gases, consequent upon the process of combustion, takes place, .... After ignition, combustion should not be left to itself, but be regulated by an external arrangement, maintaining the right proportion between the pressures, volumes, and temperatures."

It has been a formidable technological challenge to achieve rates of heat release that match Diesel's prescription, particularly for the higher speed engines found in vehicles. Yet to be accomplished, the difficulty of this task has stimulated a field rich in creative innovation. Better control over diesel fuel injection can narrow the gap between the theoretical maximum and actual fuel economy.

The ordinary production diesel truck engine has a thermal efficiency around 42%, which means that 42% of the heat released when the fuel burns is turned into work by the engine. Technical paper 2011-01-0363 reports a thermal efficiency of 59% on their experimental engine, which would equate to a 40% improvement in fuel economy. A complex means lowered the rate at which heat was added, proving R. Diesel's theory. The much simpler, retrofittable Great Plains Diesel Technologies' continuously-controllable fuel injector will achieve this same effect.

Our continuously-controllable injector enables true rate shaping of fuel flow into the combustion chamber at precisely the speed and proportionality that is required to keep the gases as close to constant temperature as possible. This is the ultimate key to increasing engine thermal efficiency and improving fuel economy. Simply put, our injector design introduces heat at the rate at which the engine can convert it into work.

In addition, our continuously-controllable injector enables more conventional use in today's applications since it offers double the number of injection events over that of a modern piezo injector.

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Reduce Emissions

GPDT's new mechatronic technology can mimic the operation of a solenoid or it can mimic the operation of a piezoelectric actuator. The very same GPDT actuator simultaneously offers much more speed, force, durability, and direct valve element control unattainable by either the solenoid or piezoelectric actuator.

Such key characteristics open the door to re-considering the highly evolved but vintage needle and nozzle. Different valve configurations and how best to operate them can now be reviewed for their suitability in rapidly and finely atomizing a liquid. For but one example, consider GPDT's early experiment with an underlapped spool valve. Continuous, quick control over the spool showed its potential for sharply starting and stopping fuel flow, a characteristic that could be used to reduce the formation of NOx and/or DPM emissions.

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Save Money

The fastest way to stay ahead of the competition is to implement technology that reduces and perhaps eliminates the need for costly emissions scrubbing equipment. Agricultural engine manufacturers tell us that the cost of engines has increased by 60 to 120% in simply improving their engines from Tier 3 EPA levels to Tier 4 EPA levels. Similar cost increases are seen across the board in the diesel industry from trucking and personal vehicles, all of which cost the end customer money. The primary cost driver in these applications is due to expensive aftertreatment equipment such as Urea, Diesel Particulate Filters, Selective Catalytic Reduction, etc.

As manufacturers continue to make their engines emissions compliant using today's technology, the key to success tomorrow is with value added solutions. Continuously controllable fuel injection offers manufacturers a route to build emission compliant and more fuel efficient diesel engines with reduced need for expensive aftertreatment.

Visit the Explore the Technology page for more details.