Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

Specific challenge: The challenge is the development of advanced non-hybrid powertrain concepts for heavy duty vehicles (either dual-fuel or optimised for pure natural gas operation), complying with the Euro VI standards and meeting the CO2/km emissions targets currently under definition.

This will deliver significant air quality improvements, particularly in terms of particle numbers and NOx in real driving conditions.

In order to achieve a real impact on the societal challenges, vehicles using the developed technology need to be competitive with current vehicles using conventional fuels. Therefore an additional technological challenge is to develop specific components (for instance better fuel tanks for liquefied natural gas with improved thermal insulation, optimised pressure handling systems and methane catalysers) for these types of fuels with lower cost, volume and weight while keeping high safety standards.

Scope: Proposals should include adequate combinations of combustion process optimisation, variable compression ratios, engine control, dual fuel operation, optimised fuel injection systems, adaptive systems and sensors to take into account different fuel qualities, new generation after-treatment systems (in particular for NOx and methane slip especially during transients and at low temperatures) and overall powertrain optimisation, advanced fuel tanks (high pressure  gaseous, liquid or solid state) and any other innovative concepts and components for the different vehicle categories.

Ranges before fuelling should be demonstrated of at least 800 km on natural gas while keeping weight, volume and cost penalties to a similar level to current best in class vehicles.

All developed technology should be integrated on vehicles that should be tested by independent bodies on the World Heavy Duty Cycle (WHDC) test procedures, including the relevant Portable Emission Measurement System (PEMS) approaches.

The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU of between EUR 10 to 20 million each would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting other amounts.

Expected impact: Real driving emission levels respecting post-2020 emission limits and procedures shall be achieved in order to address the air quality challenge. The capability to maintain this performance during the engine life should be also demonstrated through accelerated ageing procedures.

As far as the climate change challenge is concerned, the research target is to achieve at least 10% lower CO2-equivalent emissions (i.e. including unburned methane and N2O) than the best vehicles on the market in 2013 using the same fuel (natural gas for pure methane engines, diesel in the case of dual fuel systems).

Type of action: Innovation Actions

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