On-Board Hydrogen Generation for Rapid Catalyst Light-Off
This paper describes an on-vehicle demonstration of a hydrogen-heated catalyst (HHC) system for reducing the level of cold-start hydrocarbon emissions from a gasoline-fueled light-duty vehicle. The HHC system incorporated an onboard electrolyzer that generates and stores hydrogen (H2) during routine vehicle operation. Stored hydrogen and supplemental air are injected upstream of a platinum-containing automotive catalyst when the engine is started. Rapid heating of the catalytic converter occurs immediately as a result of catalytic oxidation of hydrogen (H2) with oxygen (O2) on the catalyst surface. Federal Test Procedure (FTP) emission results of the hydrogen-heated catalyst-equipped vehicle demonstrated reductions of hydrocarbons (HC) and carbon monoxide (CO) up to 68 and 62 percent, respectively. This study includes a brief analysis of the emissions and fuel economy effects of a 10-minute period of hydrogen generation during the FTP.