Vapor Fuel Technologies (Beavercreek, Ore.) claims they can increase the mileage of existing automobile and truck engines by almost one-third by vaporizing fuel and mixing it with super-hot air, enabling modified electronic control circuitry to coax the same horsepower out of engines while burning less fuel and cutting emissions. The company plans to offer retrofit kits for American vehicles within a year, and hopes to close deals to include its technology on new models from U.S., European and Asian auto makers by 2010.
Vapor Fuel Technologies hired an independent laboratory, California Environmental Engineering (Santa Ana, Calif.), which is certified by both the the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the California Air Resources Board. The results of the testing showed performance comparable to a stock Ford F-150 test vehicle, while achieving fuel economy that was better by more than 30 percent; about 30 percent less emissions were released, the tests found.
Vapor Fuel Technologies believes that the cost for a fully installed retrofit system will be about $900.00 U.S. This would pay off for someone driving a 21 mpg car now and getting 28 mpg with the system after they drove 38,000 miles with gasoline at $2/gallon or 25,000 miles with gasoline at $3/gallon.
Government support of the retrofit and assistance in scaling up the operation would be justified. There was The Accelerated Retirement of Inefficient Vehicles Retirement Act of 2009 (ARIVA)—also called the “Cash for Clunkers” program—would reimburse drivers with a credit of up to $4,500 for scrapping vehicles with a when-new fuel economy rating of less than 18 mpg US as reported by the original manufacturer for purposes of CAFE compliance if they trade for a new or nearly new car that exceeds CAFE by 25%. The retrofit would not provide as much mileage gain as the car for clunkers but the energy used to create a new car would not need to be used and the retrofit kits could be rolled out faster to over 200 million old cars and trucks in the USA. A complete rollout would reduce US gas use for cars and trucks (which use 50% of the 20 million barrels per day) by 3 million barrels per day.
Piggyback electronics and an add-on “vapor chamber” could be used to increase the mileage of existing automobile and truck engines by almost one-third while lowering emissions. Electronic modules from Unichip (Hillsboro, Ore.) are typically used to boost the performance of existing vehicles by intercepting signals from sensors and modifying their values before delivery to an engine control unit. Instead of increasing horsepower, a module being created by Unichip for Vapor Fuel Technologies will modify data flowing to and from the stock control unit to accommodate the super-heated vaporized fuel mix that provides increased fuel economy and lower emissions.
VFT has decided to introduce the system in stages based on engine platforms. The first retrofit packages will be for the larger 8 cylinder Trucks and SUVs. We believe this will make the largest immediate impact to the economy concerning gas prices and environmental issues.
Can my vehicle be used for testing?
VFT is not accepting individual vehicle donations for testing of the product. We are however seeking fleet vehicles for testing to begin in 2009.
Brian Wang is a Futurist Thought Leader and a popular Science blogger with 1 million readers per month. His blog Nextbigfuture.com is ranked #1 Science News Blog. It covers many disruptive technology and trends including Space, Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, Medicine, Anti-aging Biotechnology, and Nanotechnology.
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