CEC Backing Promise of Reducing Greenhouse Emissions by 80%,
‘Successful Completion of this Project May Result in a New Market’
Cummins and Cummins Pacific are wrapping up road tests of the Ethos 2.8L, a 2.8-liter engine for medium trucks designed to run on E85/ethanol. Cummins Ethos 2.8L development is backed by the California Energy Commission, which is putting some $2.7 million into the overall $6.5 million effort.
The Ethos 2.8L has been tested in an MT-45 from Freightliner Custom Chassis Corp. Assuming cellulosic ethanol fuel, the vehicle’s engine Allison transmission combination promises to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by as much as 80% compared with a baseline gasoline-powered medium-duty truck, Cummins said Monday.
“Successful completion of this project may result in a new market for E85 fuel now dominated by gasoline and diesel in the 19,500-lb step-van fleet market,” CEC says. The agency estimates greenhouse gas savings as great as 69%, or 10% to 20% using corn-based ethanol.
‘Nearly Twice’ the Power
According to Cummins, “More than 1,000 miles and 1,500 hours have been accumulated on the Ethos 2.8L engine over the past two and a half years, demonstrating that this technology is capable of far exceeding the 50% CO2 emissions reductions outlined in the project’s goals.
“A final on-road validation testing phase has been underway in the Sacramento, California, area since June and continuing into this month, and is being managed by Cummins Pacific, the California and Hawaii distributor for Cummins, Inc.”
‘Diesel-Like Cylinder Pressures’
To take full advantage of E-85’s “favorable combustion attributes and potential,” Cummins says, the Ethos 2.8L operates at diesel-like cylinder pressures with advanced spark ignition. The engine delivers up to 250 horsepower and peak torque of up to 450 foot-pounds, “nearly twice” that of conventional gasoline and diesel engines of 2.8-liter displacement.
The Ethos 2.8L features integrated stop-start to further reduce fuel consumption and emissions.
“Cummins-integrated specific system controls, along with a robust starter, smart alternator and sensors, are all designed to handle the additional stop-start duty cycle and maintain reliable operation over the life of the engine, Cummins says, noting that it worked closely with Allison to integrate the demonstration truck’s 2000 Series transmission for smooth and efficient stop-start operation.
Valvoline provided “NextGen” engine oils said to be specifically formulated for lower CO2 emissions.
The project “clearly demonstrates that by combining innovative engine design and combustion approaches with low-carbon alternative fuels, we can determine a path to significant reductions in greenhouse gas emissions,” Cummins R&D VP Wayne Eckerle said in a release.
“Cummins produces industry-leading emissions-controls technologies and products, and we continue to explore new ways to make our company stronger and our customers more successful, while reducing our environmental footprint,” he said.
We are very appreciative of the CEC’s funding participation in this important effort,” Eckerle added. (CEC grant agreement number ARV-10-044)
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Source: Cummins with Fleets & Fuels follow-up