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Innovative FUel Sensor for engIne OptimisatioN

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - I-Fusion (Innovative FUel Sensor for engIne OptimisatioN)

Reporting period: 2014-11-01 to 2015-04-30

SP3H is developing a Fuel Quality Sensing (FQS) technology, to be installed on-board vehicles equipped with thermal engines. Based on the information provided by the Fuel Quality Sensor, the Engine Electronic Control Unit (ECU) will have the opportunity to adapt all Engine actuators (injection, Exhaust Gas Recirculation…) in order to optimize pollutants, CO2 emissions and global engine behavior for each fuel encountered in real environment.
During the iFusion project (Phase 1), SP3H performed a technical feasibility study to validate the identified solution for automotive application. The main technological barrier to overcome was the FQS resistance over the lifetime of a vehicle. SP3H needed to carry out an endurance test of a FQS prototype installed onboard a vehicle, collecting data over a test cycle over 50 000 kilometers in operational environment.
A prototype FQS was installed in the fuel line between the fuel tank and the engine of a commercial diesel in order to get the more severe operating conditions.
To validate the FQS reliability, the car was equipped with:
- additional sensors to measure air temperature, fuel temperature and fuel pressure close to the FQS
- data logging system recording continuously during the tests :
- data delivered by the FQS
- additional sensors outputs
- key car & engine parameters (speed, fuel gauge level, pedal position…)
The car was then run all over Europe during more than 4 months (and more than 50 000 km), in various road and traffic conditions. Data acquired by the data logging system was systematically recorded and analysed by SP3H team.
The results of this Phase 1 feasibility study were totally positive: the FQS remained perfectly operational without any kind of maintenance; no reliability issue could be observed, and the accuracy of the FQS output remained as expected for all fuel in all test conditions. The compatibility of the technology with Onboard Automotive use is demonstrated.
In addition to the technical content of the Phase 1 feasibility study, actions were performed in order to refine SP3H’s strategy for next steps. Initial business plan presented in Phase 1 remains globally relevant, with slight adjustments and consolidations in terms of timing and production volumes.
"SP3H global value proposition aims at enabling mobility without accelerating climate change. The project’s achievements of FQS technology, to be installed on-board vehicles equipped with thermal engines, will significantly improve the fuel consumption in terms of:
• Reducing consumption and CO2 emissions by up to 5% (real driving) ;
• Reducing pollutant emissions by up to 20% at source (NOx, Particulates, Soot);
• Breaking an entry barrier for introducing sophisticated engines into bad quality fuel markets (BRICS: China, India, Russia Brazil);
• Facilitating penetration of the next generation of cleaner biofuels (""drop in fuel"");
• Increasing maintenance intervals on engines (Oil) or DPF (Diesel Particulate Filter) regeneration intervals;
• Save on engine's warranty cost for the automotive/Heavy duty markets.

SP3H expects to generate positive EBITDA by 2016, with a long-term margin potential of over 70%, and to recruit 15 others people (commercial, technicians & engineers) over the next 10 years. SP3H activity will also generate indirect employments, as SP3H industrial partner will need complete teams to industrialize and produce the sensors in high Automotive volumes (>200 employments)."
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