School of Engineering, Computing and Mathematics


  • LOW CARBON VEHICLES


    We bring together scientific and industrial expertise for providing solutions for fuel efficient and low emission engines and vehicles.

     

    Research home

  • LOW CARBON VEHICLES


    We carry out consultancy and research work in the area of engine design, performance evaluation, testing and measurement and simulation of engines and vehicle powertrain.

    The following are some recent examples:

    • Design, development and testing of high performance engines
    • Performance evaluation of fuels and fuel additives
    • Measure and control strategy development for nano-scale particulate matter from gasoline engines
    • Combustion systems design optimisation using CFD
    • Exhaust systems design optimisation using CFD
    • Industry-standard 3D simulation tools, including STAR-CD/ES-ICE (CD-Adapco) Engine Simulation Software and Star-CCM+ (CD-Adapco), used for general external and internal flows and combustion
    • CFD of External flows

    Engine test bed up to 400kW equipped with independent coolant, oil, air and fuel temperature controllers along with engine management system, ETAS-INCA, AVL indiset Advanced, exhaust gas monitoring system for pre and post-catalyst measurement, FTIR gas spectrometer and mass spectrometer for development, calibration of engines for specific fuel economy and emission standards. Test bed with equipment that can simultaneously measure, analyse and evaluate the performance of the engines using various parameters is available for consultancy and research work. 

     
  • We use variety of diesel and gasoline engines to perform research into advanced technologies that enable us to improve fuel efficiency and reduce combustion generated emissions. Our engine test beds are equipped for developing engine control strategies for optimum fuel economy and low emission targets.

    Experimental and numerical work in this area focuses on:

    • Developing strategies for 'smart' combustion for flexi-fuel engines
    • Combustion and energy release analysis for different fuels
    • Effect of additives on exhaust gas emissions and performance
    • Thermodynamic modelling of engines and Fuel injection using 1-D numerical simulation

    Our main area of research is on nano-scale particulate matter from Gasoline Direct Injection (DGI) engines. Extensive work has been carried out related to heat release and engine out particulate matter , correlating gaseous emission and particulate matter and the measurement uncertainties related to nano-scale particulate matter measurement.

    The following are ongoing projects:

    • Formation mechanisms of nano-scale particulate matter in GDI engines
    • Effect of engine operating conditions especially during cold start on particulate matter
    • The role of three way catalytic converter on engine out nano-scale particulate matter

    We measure legislative and unregulated emission species and evaluate the performance of after treatment systems using raw exhaust gas analysers and tailpipe out emissions analysers simultaneously in conjunction with in-cylinder combustion and heat release analysis. We use FTIR gas spectrometry and Mass spectrometry for the study of unregulated emission species.

    Our facilities are unique in bringing together various measurement instruments in one facility. Some of the current projects are:

    • In-cylinder combustion and exhaust emissions
    • Unregulated emission species from GDI engines
    • Real-world performance of catalytic converters

    One of our main projects is in the area of powertrain simulation for the prediction of fuel economy and emissions.Using this numerical powertrain model in conjunction with experimental results, we can identify localised emission hotspots in the travel route and we can propose strategies for optimizing fuel economy and emission levels for a given powertrain platform.

    We also design, develop and test high performance engines for Racing Applications

    • Engine Flows and Fuel Spray
    • Multi-Fuel Combustion and Heat Transfer
    • Emissions and PM Formation and In-Cylinder Distribution

    We produce high performance engine designs, ranging in scope from incremental improvements to bespoke engines. Using our expertise in advanced materials, manufacturing processes, and combustion concepts we are able to create elegant solutions which can be practically realised.

    Our facilities are equipped with CAD –CAM stations and can rapid prototype, cast, or CNC machine components to a high standard. Current work includes:

    • Design and manufacture of bespoke V-Twin race engine
    • Design and manufacture of racing gearbox and active differential
    • Design and manufacture of high efficiency 2-stroke race engine
    • Dynamometer development of production based engines
    • Calibration and development of bespoke racing engines

    Two Brookes staff members, Allan Hutchinson and Denise Morrey, have published a guide based on the findings of the REPUTE (Renewable Energy in PUblic Transport Enterprise) project. This 18-month EU Atlantic Area Interreg project was established in January 2014 with the aim of developing and promoting the use of renewable energy in public transport in a rural or semi-rural context.

    The REPUTE Guide explores how each of the regions in Atlantic Area can learn from each other and keep up with the pace of development within larger, more populated, regions.

    The Guide provides examples of innovative large- and small-scale transport schemes from different countries, including the REPUTE pilot projects.

    The transport sector is the fastest growing source of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. People in rural areas typically travel 50% further than their counterparts in urban areas and most of these journeys are undertaken by bus or car.

    This REPUTE Guide provides the context and motivation for catalysing transport changes. It showcases a number of imaginative initiatives that connect people to rural public transport hubs through community-run schemes, shared ownership of transport resources and bespoke on-demand services.

    It shows that the key drivers for change include community engagement, fund-raising at a local level, local energy initiatives and policies, and the introduction of cost-effective, energy-saving, technologies.

    The final part of the Guide provides a set of case studies that describe activities and solutions to particular challenges.

    What’s inside?

    • SUSTAINABLE TRANSPORT
      Policy context, renewable energy in transport, intelligent transport systems, behaviour change and modal shift
    • CURRENT SITUATION IN THE PARTNERS’ ATLANTIC AREA REGIONS
      Regional descriptions, overview of energy and transport, regional economics, social mobility in the Atlantic Area
    • REGIONAL MOBILITY CHALLENGES AND INITIATIVES
      Rural issues, community engagement and financial considerations, transport context, examples of rural transport, schemes and projects, car clubs, energy context
    • SUGGESTIONS AND DIRECTIONS
      Modal shift, socio-technical transitions, alternative and renewable energy, accessible and intelligent transport of people and goods, financial considerations
    • CASE STUDIES OF GOOD PRACTICE
      Within the partners’ regions, outside the partners’ regions, REPUTE pilot projects

    For more information visit www.reputeproject.com.

    Download the guide here.

    The transport sector is the fastest growing source of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. European transport-related GHG emissions account currently for 25% of all European emissions and are expected to continue to rise at about 6% per year. Sustainable transport requires a radical shift in investment towards providing fast and efficient public transport systems.

    The benefits of creating better integrated and connected cities include increased economic growth, improvements in the quality of life for residents and businesses, better visitor experience, and a reduced impact on the environment. Congestion and air quality represent the chief concerns for the City of Oxford.

    The closure of the central Westgate car park in 2014, with the loss of 800 out of 2,000 existing car parking spaces, prompted a UK Government-funded collaborative project with Oxford Brookes University and Oxford University, Oxfordshire County Council, and a number of SMEs in a partnership called Mobility Oxford (MobOx).

    MobOx (http://mobilityoxford.com/) will create a Living Laboratory in Oxford to assess, validate and prove the business cases of a variety of transport solutions. MobOx has the full support of the Oxfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership and other key stakeholders. MobOx has analysed data from park and rides and travel patterns, and has proposed a number of solutions to date:

    • Creation of retail hubs at park and rides
    • Park and rides to become multi-modal hubs where commuters can change transport modes
    • Integrated ticketing to encourage use of alternative modes of transport
    • Dynamic signage and information with journey planning and pricing
    • More flexible bus interiors to accommodate push chairs and wheel chairs
    • Shopping delivery to park and rides
    • Electric bike and trike schemes for personal transport and last-mile delivery.

    To reduce emissions, and improve fuel efficiency, a number of buses fitted with the F1-developed Kinetic Energy Recovery Systems (KERS) are now operating in the City. These are recognized mainly as the double-decker grey-coloured BrookesBus vehicles.