1996-05-01

Applications and Benefits of Catalytic Converter Thermal Management 961134

A catalytic converter thermal management system (TMS) using variable-conductance vacuum insulation and phase-change thermal storage can maintain the converter temperature above its operating temperature for many hours, allowing most trips to begin with minimal “cold-start” emissions. The latest converter TMS prototype was tested on a Ford Taurus (3.0 liter flex-fuel engine) at Southwest Research Institute. Following a 24-hour soak, the FTP-75 emissions were 0.031, 0.13, and 0.066 g/mile for NMHC, CO, and NOx, respectively. Tests were also run using 85% ethanol (E85), resulting in values of 0.005, 0.124, and 0.044 g/mile, and 0.005 g/mile NMOG. Compared to the baseline FTP levels, these values represent reductions of 84% to 96% for NMHC, NMOG, and CO.

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