1919-01-01

AN INTERPRETATION OF THE ENGINE-FUEL SITUATION 190013

THE automotive industry is developing without due regard to the fuel situation. This situation is an integral part of the automotive field and should not be left out of account. Owing to the pressure of automotive demand, the supply of engine fuel is changing in character and price, with danger of precipitant alterations; there arises in consequence a fuel problem which cannot be adequately solved without the active participation of the automotive industry.
An analysis of the problem is as follows: (a) The domestic production of crude petroleum is nearing its maximum; (b) the natural gasoline content of this supply is decreasing; (c) Mexico offers no permanent relief competent to solve the issue; (d) substitute fuels do not alter the situation; (e) the supply of engine fuel can be maintained only through an extraordinary dependence upon cracking or through adaptations in the engine; (f) cracking cannot meet the issue at a favorable price, and (g) the burden, therefore, falls upon the automotive engine, which must consequently so adapt itself as to gain higher thermal efficiency, and to use less specialized, less volatile, fuel.
The automotive industry should, as an emergency measure, take steps at once to shape its development in the direction of increased fuel economy and less specialized requirements as to fuel, establishing for this purpose centralized machinery to study the problem in full detail; to keep the industry informed of every development in the situation; to co-ordinate research and design in the competing units of the industry; and to conduct basic lines of research not now adequately encompassed by individual agencies.

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