Computational creativity and the future of AI

Diesel

Scania's 3rd generation ethanol buses

November 9, 2007 Stockholm Transport (SL) is taking delivery of 10 Scania buses featuring the company's third generation of ethanol engines - technology which can cut carbon dioxide emissions by up to 90 per cent compared to conventional diesel motors.  Read More

Nissan's Intima concept

Perhaps the least outrageous of the Japanese concepts to be unveiled at the Tokyo Auto Show – and thus the most likely to directly influence a production model, Nissan’s Intima concept saloon lays out the company’s definition of modern luxury. Slick exterior looks sit well with a glass-roofed interior that’s designed to soothe its occupants in an aesthetic sense as much as physically. Wide-angle barn doors on the driver and passenger sides give exceptionally easy access, and they’ve even included an 80-degree swiveling motorised passenger seat to assist the elderly or disabled in a comfortable and dignified entry and exit.  Read More

BioBike - 2.2 litres per 100 kilometres

October 22, 2007 The 2007 Panasonic World Solar Challenge got underway yesterday with 40 teams from across the globe competing in the 3000 km race from Darwin to Adelaide in Australia. Among the competitors in the Greenfleet Technology Class - a category for internal combustion vehicles promoting an enhanced environmental profile - is the BioBike, a biodiesel-powered motorcycle, constructed by a group of students in Adelaide, Australia, that happily does 96kmh and returns a staggering fuel economy of only 2.2 litres per 100 kilometres. As the design is further refined, BioBike’s creators expect this to drop below the 2 litres per 100km mark (around 107 miles per gallon), and they believe it can be manufactured for around the same cost as a petrol-powered dirtbike.  Read More

Cross-linked microstructure filters

October 16, 2007 Clean transportation technology is and will remain a critically important issue, with the ongoing development of fuel cells and hybrid technology growing strongly in recent years. The health risks associated with particulate matter, and tightening government regulations on pollutants give more immediate and practical implications to another alternative - the concept of “clean diesel” . This encompasses the use of diesel powered vehicles, which achieve up to 30% greater fuel efficiency than their gasoline powered counterparts, but also boast low-emissions through the use of advanced filtration.  Read More

Volkswagen's Golf Bluemotion, capable of returning over 52mpg.

September 4, 2007 Toyota needed two whole engines to get 46mpg from their famous Prius hybrid, but Volkswagen have achieved over 52mpg by simply tweaking a few characteristics of its popular Golf diesel compact in the latest addition to the company’s environmentally-focused BlueMotion initiative. The Golf BlueMotion makes over 1200km from a 55-liter tank, showing that there’s further room for development from the combustion engine.  Read More

MITSUBISHI Concept-cX 'Compact crossover' for Frankfurt debut

July 31, 2007 Mitsubishi will unveil the Concept-cX at the 62nd Internationale Automobil Ausstellung (IAA; commonly known as the Frankfurt Motor Show) in September. The MITSUBISHI Concept-cX represents a new-generation compact SUV, and uses a new high-output, high-efficiency 1.8-liter clean diesel engine, featuring a variable geometry (VG) turbocharger for optimum boost control and a diesel oxidation catalyst (DOC) with diesel particulate filter (DPF) for compliance with Europe's Euro 5 emission standards. The company's new Twin Clutch SST (Sport Shift Transmission) adds superior power transmission efficiency for a powertrain that delivers nimble performance alongside excellent fuel economy and low emissions. Among the number of new environmental technologies applied in the Concept-cX is the extensive use of interior trim materials made from Mitsubishi's own Green Plastic — made from bamboo and other plant-based resins.  Read More

smart set to roll out a full complement of Alternative Drive Systems

July 10, 2007 Mercedes-owned smart is set to become the first mainstream production vehicle with a full complement of alternative drive systems. It has begun touting four new versions of the smart fortwo, all of which can be expected in production form before the year is out. We’re not sure which is the most exciting as they all offer different solutions depending on your needs. The cleanest of the new smarts is the 30 kW plug-in electric version with a range of 115 kilometres (EUDC), but there’s also a 100 mpg 53 kW diesel hybrid drive, a slightly less economical petrol hybrid for those who don’t want diesel, a 52 kW micro hybrid petrol variant and a diesel-engined fortwo which will become the world’s most economical combustion-engined production car with 85 mpg (3.3 litres of fuel per 100 kilometres - NEDC) and the ability to travel 1000 kilometres without refuelling. The smart fortwo diesel is the world champion in low CO2 emissions at just 88 grams of CO2 per kilometre. This is huge news.  Read More

World’s most powerful production six-cylinder diesel introduced to BMW 6 Series

July 2, 2007 BMW has for the first time combined its twin-turbocharged, six-cylinder diesel with the marque’s flagship Grand Tourer in the form of the new 635d. Coinciding with the revamp of 6 Series model line-up to include Active Headrests, Brake Energy Regeneration and other fuel saving and emissions-cutting technology, the 635d Coupé and Convertible will hit showrooms in the UK in October with world’s most powerful production diesel under the bonnet.  Read More

InnovaTek's compact, microchannel reformer

May 8, 2007 Acumentrics, a leading developer of solid-oxide fuel cells and uninterruptible power supplies for the distributed generation market, announced today that they have proven 1300 hours of fuel cell operation on synthetic JP-8 fuel. The synthetic JP-8 (“S-8”) Fischer-Tropsch fuel was provided by the Air Force Research Laboratory, and was produced as part of the DoD Assured Fuels Initiative. According to the company, this accomplishment marks one of the first fuel cell successes with heavy hydrocarbons in an extended run. Because Acumentrics’ ceramic fuel cells operate at high temperature, they accept lighter hydrocarbons such as propane and natural gas directly, and disassociate the fuel inside the cell, via in-situ reformation. For fuel cells to be of most use to the military, they must operate on heavy fuels. The heavy hydrocarbons in diesel and JP-8 require catalytic reforming before they can enter a cell. For this test the company employed a separate InnovaTek reformer (pictured).  Read More

The world’s first horizontally-opposed turbo diesel engine

February 8, 2007 In 1896, when Karl Benz patented the first internal combustion engine, it had horizontally opposed pistons, and the flat boxermotor (the German term for flat engine) has been powering some of the world’s best known automobiles (Porsche, Volkswagen’s Beetle and Kombi f’rinstance), motorcycles (Honda’s Goldwing and BMW’s mainstay Boxer range) and aircraft (Lycoming and Continental) ever since. Japanese automotive company Subaru has used the boxer design almost exclusively and is now pioneering a new phase for horizontally opposed piston engines with the release of the world’s first horizontally-opposed turbo diesel engine. The Japanese all-wheel drive specialist will be displaying an entire drivetrain at the 77th Geneva International Motor Show next month.  Read More

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