sticker-shock fuel prices, researchers in Pennsylvania are reporting
results of laboratory tests and road tests verifying that a simple,
inexpensive device attached to a car engine’s fuel injector can boost
gas mileage by up to 20 percent. That translates into several more
precious miles per gallon, they say. Their study is scheduled for the
November 19 issue of ACS’ Energy & Fuels, a bi-monthly journal.
In the new study, Rongjia Tao and colleagues describe development and
testing of a new fuel economy booster. The small device consists of an
electrically charged tube that can be attached to the fuel line of a
car’s engine near the fuel injector. The device creates an electric
field that thins fuel, or reduces its viscosity, so that smaller
droplets are injected into the engine. That leads to more efficient and
cleaner combustion than a standard fuel injector, the researchers say.
Six months of road testing in a diesel car showed that the device
increased highway fuel from 33 miles per gallon (mpg) to 37 mpg. “We
expect the device will have wide applications on all types of internal
combustion engines, present ones and future ones,” the report states,
citing engines powered by gasoline, biodiesel, and kerosene. Further
improvements in the device could lead to even better mileage, they
suggest. — MTS
A news release from American Chemical Society on September 24, 2008.