Graphene could lead to greener more fuel efficient cars in the future by converting heat into electricity.
Harvesting heat produced by a car’s engine which would otherwise be wasted and using it to recharge the car’s batteries or powering the air-conditioning system could be a significant feature in the next generation of hybrid cars.
The average car currently loses around 70% of energy generated through fuel consumption to heat. Utilising that lost energy requires a thermoelectric material which can generate an electrical current from the application of heat.
Thermoelectric materials convert heat to electricity or vice-versa, such as with refrigerators. The challenge with these devices is to use a material that is a good conductor of electricity but also dissipates heat well.
Currently, materials which exhibit these properties are often toxic and operate at very high temperatures – higher than that produced by car engines. By adding graphene, a new generation of composite materials could reduce carbon emissions globally from car use.
Scientists from The University of Manchester working with European Thermodynamics Ltd have increased the potential for low cost thermoelectric materials to be used more widely in the automotive industry.
The team, led by Prof Ian Kinloch, Prof Robert Freer and Yue Lin, added a small amount of graphene to strontium titanium oxide.
The resulting composite was able to convert heat which would otherwise be lost as waste into an electric current over a broad temperature range, going down to room temperature.
Prof Freer said: “Current oxide thermoelectric materials are limited by their operating temperatures which can be around 700 degrees Celsius. This has been a problem which has hampered efforts to improve efficiency by utilising heat energy waste for some time.
“Our findings show that by introducing a small amount of graphene to the base material can reduce the thermal operating window to room temperature which offers a huge range of potential for applications.
“The new material will convert 3-5% of the heat into electricity. That is not much but, given that the average vehicle loses roughly 70% of the energy supplied to it by its fuel to waste heat and friction, recovering even a small percentage of this with thermoelectric technology would be worthwhile.”
The Latest on: Fuel efficient cars
via Google News
The Latest on: Fuel efficient cars
- VW Jetta Gets Slightly Better Fuel Economy In 2022 Thanks To Bigger, More Powerful Engineon October 14, 2021 at 7:34 am
The latest proof that fuel economy is a tricky business comes from the 2022 Volkswagen Jetta, whose EPA fuel economy numbers have just been released. Offered with a slightly bigger, slightly more ...
- Enterprise Car Club Launches in Irelandon October 14, 2021 at 3:20 am
A-Car, National Car Rental and Alamo Rent A Car brands, has announced that its Enterprise Car Club service is now available in Ireland. The arrival of Enterprise Car Club reflects a commitment by the ...
- Fuel-efficient driving can check your fuel price woeson October 14, 2021 at 3:04 am
I leave home early and leave work early. This eliminates your drive through traffic jam giving you a smooth drive. It will definitely save you fuel ...
- 'Perhaps worse is to come': E10 petrol changes 'taking a hit' on drivers fuel efficiencyon October 14, 2021 at 1:41 am
E10 FUEL changes have frustrated drivers over its efficiency, with some now looking to remain using the old E5 petrol.
- Shell Super Truck Proves Fuel-Sipping Future Tech Is Available Todayon October 13, 2021 at 10:46 pm
Shell proved the Starship’s efficiency on a coast-to-coast drive from San Diego to Jacksonville carrying material for creating artificial reefs in the ocean, delivering hope for the future.
- How the EV transition and fuel standards can drive down Australian emissionson October 13, 2021 at 7:02 pm
Electric vehicles can play a vital role in helping Australia reach carbon cut targets, but the government needs to do more. Here's how.
- Fuel efficiency of NZ imported cars jumps 15 per centon October 13, 2021 at 9:00 am
A 15 per cent improvement in the fuel-efficiency of newly-imported cars from three months ago is “proof” the Government’s ‘feebates’ scheme is working, Transport Minister Michael Wood says. Wood said ...
- The Loremo Is a Cool Lost Artifact From the Search for Ultimate Fuel Efficiencyon October 13, 2021 at 8:00 am
The car took lightness and size to an extreme, and Road and Track described it as looking like an “overgrown go-kart.” ...
- Why newer cars aren’t always better for the climateon October 12, 2021 at 6:00 am
Waiting longer to buy a new car and keeping existing cars on the road longer overall could substantially cut greenhouse gas emissions ...
- Google Maps Fastest vs. Fuel-Efficient Routes: Everything You Need to Knowon October 10, 2021 at 1:14 am
Google Maps is a navigation app that’s constantly evolving, and just as expected, the Mountain View-based search giant is working on all kinds of new-generation updates that align its software with ...
via Bing News