2009 - Volume #33, Issue #1, Page #16[ Sample Stories From This Issue | List of All Stories In This Issue | Print this story | Read this issue]
Electronic Fuel-Saver Really Works, Say Researchers
Developed by Temple University researchers, the Electra is now in final testing. According to Rongjia Tao, chair, Temple University Physics Dept., the device creates an electric field that thins fuel or reduces its viscosity so smaller droplets are injected into the engine.
"It's now in field testing. After that, we'll be taking it for SAE testing (Society of Automotive Engineers) this year, which is the holy grail of fuel evaluation," says Joe Dell, Save The World Air, Inc. (STWA), license holder of the technology. "We hope to get the same results with this in heavy-duty trucks as we saw with an earlier generation device on a Mercedes Benz. It increased fuel efficiency 20 percent on the road and 12 to 15 percent in city driving."
One of the companies that STWA and Temple are working with has a fleet of 2,500 units. Dell estimates that if the device produces only a 10 percent improvement in fuel efficiency, that fleet alone would save $26 million per year based on average mileage of 125,000 and recent high diesel prices.
"It's a short step from the field tests we are doing to SAE testing and then to production and sales," says Dell. "Most fuel-saving devices are snake oil. We want to be credible and take our experience to the American Trucking Association. We won't need to advertise this if it does what we think it can."
Initially being introduced for heavy-duty diesels, the device may eventually find a place in domestic cars and light trucks as well. Dell expects that while the savings to an individual consumer might not justify its use, a carmaker might adopt it to improve overall fleet miles.
Dell is looking at other possible uses for the device. The heavier the oil, the more impact the electric field has, whether petroleum or vegetable oil based.
"We found in tests that the device can improve flow rate of crude oil by 39 percent," he says. "It decreases viscosity, so it takes less power to pump and reduces paraffin buildup in pipes."
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Save The World Air, Inc., 235 Tennant Avenue, Suite 5, Morgan Hill, Calif. 95037 (ph 323 932-7040; fax 323 932-7041; www. stwa.com).
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