Graphene Helps Turn Engine Heat Into Electricity to Boost Gas Mileage

July 22, 2015

Chemistry

Turning Engine Heat Into Electricity to Boost Gas Mileage

Using strontium titanium dioxide and graphene, scientists have developed of a material that can convert engine heat into electrical energy to reduce the need for fuels. It could also have applications in aerospace, manufacturing and other sectors.

In 2012, the Obama administration announced fuel-efficiency standards that would require U.S. vehicles to average 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025. Improving gas mileage could help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and global dependence on fossil fuels. One approach scientists are exploring to help address these issues involves capturing waste heat from engines and other power systems and turning it into electricity. Many compounds can do this but are heavy, costly, toxic or only operate at high temperatures. Ian A. Kinloch, Robert Freer and colleagues sought new alternatives.

The researchers started with a material called strontium titanium dioxide and added a small amount of graphene, a stable material with excellent conductive properties. The resulting composite was able to capture and convert heat into electric current efficiently over a broad temperature range.

The authors acknowledge funding from the University of Manchester Intellectual Property, Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council and the European Union Seventh Framework Program.

Publication: Yue Lin, et al., “Thermoelectric Power Generation from Lanthanum Strontium Titanium Oxide at Room Temperature Through the Addition of Graphene,” ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces; DOI: 10.1021/acsami.5b03522

Source: ACS News

Image: Car engine from Shutterstock

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5 Responses to “Graphene Helps Turn Engine Heat Into Electricity to Boost Gas Mileage”

  1. Ed Hawke Says:

    Great! Running accessories, directly running a boost motor, and recharging hybrid batteries without engaging a generator. Those functions would all use less fuel.

    Reply

  2. Paul Maher Says:

    What about the Ryden cell, Dual Carbon Cell and several other battery technologies?

    Reply

  3. Vic1248 Says:

    Graphene is also under heavy research for sieving hydrogen from the atmosphere for auto fuel cells among many other applications, it is a miracle material.

    Reply

  4. mark Says:

    This material could potentially increase efficiency of solar panels.

    Reply

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