ALTERNATE FUELS FOR TRANSPORTATION

Studies with an ammonia-fueled urban vehicle are reported which indicate that ammonia is attractive as a spark-ignition engine fuel because of its potential availability, adaptability, to existing engine designs, cost, emissions safety and easy storage. The thermal efficiency of spark-ignition engines increases with the engines compression ratio. Ammonia has an extremely high octane rating (130 plus, R.O.N.) and achieves this without use of lead or any other additives. This means that high compression ratios can be used with ammonia to achieve high engine-cycle efficiencies without associated emission penalties. Ammonia does not require cryogenic storage, and can be stored in propane tanks. The heating value of ammonia is low when compared with gasoline and liquid hydrogen. However, on a volumetric basis, liquid ammonia is more attractive than liquid hydrogen. Ammonia is toxic and caution must be exercised in handling it. However, ammonia is readily detectable by its smell at concentration levels (5-50 ppm) well below those considered dangerous for long term exposure. Also, ammonia vapor is lighter than air, and escaping vapor will rise rather than collect near the ground. The results are presented of tests which illustrate the low emmssion capabilities of the fuel. Good fuel distribution is essential for optimium operation of spark-ignition engines and gaseous fuels are therefore superior to liquid fuels. Ammonia is readily vaporized and the latent heat of vaporization is high enough to warrant its consideration as a means for air conditioning the vehicle without the use of a compressor or condenser. Materials compatibility, adaptability to existing engine designs and costs are also discussed.

  • Corporate Authors:

    American Society of Mechanical Engineers

    Two Park Avenue
    New York, NY  United States  10016-5990
  • Authors:
    • HODGSON, J W
  • Publication Date: 1974-7

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Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00260003
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Aug 28 2003 12:00AM