According to engineers in New South Wales, combining hydrogen with diesel fuel creates much lower emissions than using straight diesel. And modifying current diesel engines to accept hydrogen is doable. Using up to 90 percent of hydrogen on a timed basis resulted in an 86 percent drop in carbon dioxide. Could this revelation be the salvation of diesel engines?

Is it too late to save diesel engines?

diesel

A diesel fuel pump at a filling station | Matt Cardy/Getty

With the advent of electric cars and trucks, some might think this discovery is too little too late. But diesel engines powering trains, agricultural equipment, and power generation are just a few of the areas where we won’t be seeing electric replacements any time soon. 

There are millions of trucks and an estimated 26,000 trains running diesel engines. For their heavy-duty requirements, diesel engines still outperform their gasoline and electric counterparts. With emissions reduced, they will see more longevity, saving billions in replacement costs. 

Are they just mixing diesel fuel and hydrogen together?

diesel

Diesel traction motor being serviced | Rail Photo/Construction Photography/Avalon/Getty

Shawn Kook, one of the researchers, told Ars Technica, “We have shown that we can take those existing diesel engines and convert them into cleaner engines that burn hydrogen fuel. This new technology significantly reduces CO2 emissions from existing diesel engines. So it could play a big part in making our carbon footprint much smaller, especially in Australia with all our mining, agriculture, and other heavy industries where diesel engines are widely used.”

Mixing diesel fuel and hydrogen actually increases NOx and carbon dioxide. But timing the release of hydrogen along with the quantity and amount of pressure during critical intervals of combustion changes chemical reactions producing NOx. Concentrating hydrogen in specific regions of the combustion chamber also lessens pollutants. 

Engines work by introducing fuel into a combustion chamber. Compressing that mixture under pressure raises its temperature enough to ignite it in diesel applications. In gasoline engines, the spark plug ignites the fuel/air mixture. In both cases, the downward force of the piston spins the crank, which creates the necessary power. 

Is this system emissions-free?

diesel

Diesel truck operator fills up his tank | Steve Pfost/Newsday RM via Getty

“We have shown in our system that if you make it stratified, that is, in some areas, there is more hydrogen and in others, there is less hydrogen, then we can reduce the NOx emissions below that of a pure diesel engine,” said Kook.

This dual-fuel design still creates some pollution. But it is offset by what lithium production generates. That and the carbon footprint originally created by the manufacturing of the trucks and trains themselves.

This hybrid hydrogen injection system for diesel engines will be on the market for various applications within the next year or two. 

TECH NEWS RELATED

3 Most Reliable Lexus Models

While there are a few automotive brands out there known for being reliable, one of the top companies with several durable models in its lineup is Lexus. Which vehicles are the top three for being reliable rides? Why does reliability matter? Lexus logo | Getty Images When you buy a ...

View more: 3 Most Reliable Lexus Models

The Cheapest New Dodge Charger Is a Versatile Sedan Option With One Big Issue

The Dodge Charger offers everything from a sensible V6 and all-wheel drive to supercharged tail-happy sports sedans. Better yet, the cheapest offering in the model’s lineup, the SXT, is versatile and well-suited for daily driving. However, the 2023 Dodge Charger SXT has one glaring issue: it’ll be the last car ...

View more: The Cheapest New Dodge Charger Is a Versatile Sedan Option With One Big Issue

Cheapest New Audi Is 1 of the Best Small Luxury Cars, Says Car and Driver

Audi has a solid lineup of luxury vehicles — with their good driving dynamics, premium features, and attractive designs. Also, compared to some other luxury brands, Audi models are relatively affordable. This includes the 2023 Audi A3 subcompact sports sedan, which is the cheapest new Audi car. Also, according to ...

View more: Cheapest New Audi Is 1 of the Best Small Luxury Cars, Says Car and Driver

GM Just Announced An All-New Small-Block V8 Is Coming

The electrification zeitgeist is in full swing, but gasoline-powered engines won’t disappear overnight. Nor will V8 power, as GM just confirmed a new small-block V8 engine is coming soon. This will be the sixth generation of the legendary small-block V8 that has powered so many Chevy and GM products since ...

View more: GM Just Announced An All-New Small-Block V8 Is Coming

Best car tool kits 2023

Whether you're looking for an emergency set of basic tools or something more comprehensive, a good tool kit can save you lots of stress – but who makes the best?...

View more: Best car tool kits 2023

The Lectron Adapter Will Let You Charge a Ford Lighting at a Tesla Station

Electric vehicle charging ports are mess. Some use one type developed in Europe, others use a Japanese system, and then Teslas use their own. But, what about those who have access to a Tesla charger, but want to charge something else, like a Ford F-150 Lightning? The Ford F-150 Lightning ...

View more: The Lectron Adapter Will Let You Charge a Ford Lighting at a Tesla Station

How Much Does a Nissan Tune-up Cost, and What Do They Do?

Keeping up with your Nissan‘s regular maintenance means you get optimal performance and fewer chances of major breakdowns. With that, you save on fuel costs and significant repairs and avoid the inconvenience of your car breaking down or stalling in the middle of the road. Naturally, tune-ups are a considerable ...

View more: How Much Does a Nissan Tune-up Cost, and What Do They Do?

How Does the New Corvette E-Ray Stack Up Against Hybrid Hypercars?

The new 2024 Chevrolet Corvette E-Ray isn’t just the latest stage in the Corvette’s evolution into a world-class supercar. Instead, it’s a reminder that the latest generation of plastic fantastic can punch well above its weight class. For instance, the new hybrid Corvette is quick enough to compete with several ...

View more: How Does the New Corvette E-Ray Stack Up Against Hybrid Hypercars?

4 Snow Plow Safety Tips When Encountering These Vehicles on the Road

Alpine is Coming to the U.S, but it’s Not Bringing the Goods

What’s the Toyota Highlander Hybrid Towing Capacity?

1990s GMC Typhoon: There’s Never Been an SUV That Can Beat It

Your 2022 Ford Maverick Might Have Faulty Airbags

This Older Porsche Infotainment Upgrade Helps Modernize Your 911 and Cayenne

Only 1 Type of Buyer Should Even Consider the 2022 Jeep Compass

3 Most Common GMC Sierra 1500 Problems Reported by Hundreds of Real Owners

5 Used Cars with the Biggest Price Drops

Incredibly Rare and Awesome Pontiac GTO Judge Sold for $1.5 Million

Is the 2023 Toyota RAV4 Too Old to Keep Up?

Carroll Shelby’s 100th Birthday Honored by Centennial Edition Mustang

OTHER TECH NEWS

Top Car News Car News