Future Technologies

Future Technologies

We understand the importance of both fuel efficiency and CO2 reduction for our commercial vehicle customers. That’s why we are committed to developing pioneering exhaust heat recovery (EHR) solutions to enable OEMs to be compliant with emerging legislation and save fuel.

Since 2012 our dedicated EHR team has been based at the MIRA Technology Park –the UK centre for transport technology. Development requires unique test capabilities, including access to state-of-the-art facilities and independent industry expertise, making MIRA the ideal base.

Exhaust heat recovery

Legislation to both reduce truck CO2 output and improve fuel efficiency is unfolding. In response, engine and vehicle OEMs are developing technology that recovers exhaust heat, using it to boil a working fluid. The vapour generated is expanded to produce additional power for every litre of fuel consumed.

Our EHR fluid control experts are developing unique valve solutions to control the flow of liquid, vapour, exhaust gases and coolant in Rankine Cycle heat recovery systems – which will become standard fit on long haul trucks and high usage engines in the near future.

Working within a number of OEM development programmes, we have supplied 1st generation valves for use with both water and ethanol working fluids. These valves are unique in the industry, being:

  • Sealed for life
  • Inherently safe
  • Proportional
  • Multi-functional
  • High performance
  • Designed for truck applications

The designs enable more energy to be recovered than with existing valves. With the next generation in development, size, cost and weight are reduced whilst performance characteristics and durability are improved.

Our success is the result of extensive investment in both people and ethanol-capable facilities. Late in 2014, a bespoke Rankine System test cell was unveiled, linked with a state-of the art simulation model, the cell enables components to be tested and characterised, whilst validating the additional system performance benefits of using our valves.

Rankine heat cycle

The rankine cycle utilises a working fluid which goes through a phase change to recoup either mechanical or electrical energy from exhaust heat that wlould normally be lost to the atmosphere.. With our control valve designs, the vapour conditions can be controlled and optimised to such an extent that energy can be recovered from previously inaccessible areas of the truck drive cycle. Crucially, our control valves also improve the performance of other rankine cycle components.

Natural gas technologies

Over the next few years, natural gas will penetrate the diesel market. Our market-leading product ranges create an extensive range of high-performance components and complete system solutions to meet the specific requirements of the natural gas industry.

  • Increasing energy efficiency
  • Improving the environment by simplifying the delivery of natural gas into vehicles and eliminating waste
  • Improving the safety of natural gas delivery systems

It is predicted that by 2020 20% of commercial vehicles manufactured will be powered by natural gas.

Cryogenic valves

With its high energy density, liquefied natural gas (LNG) is fast becoming an alternative fuel of choice for medium and heavy duty vehicles as well as for high horsepower applications.

The performance and reliability of valves used in LNG applications is vital to the whole system. Since the temperature required to liquefy natural gas is -162°C, most valves need to meet cryogenic temperatures of -168°C to -198°C.

When compared to ball valves, our cryogenic solenoid valves help simplify your system design since they do not require instrument air. As a result, they reduce the amount of piping required as well as potential leak paths.

Air suspension control

Building on our proven track-record in the automotive sector, we are currently developing pneumatic control for SUV and light truck air suspension.

This features innovative new valve technology which eliminates two valve blocks and the associated tubing and electrical connections, creating a more compact product and simpler installation. In addition, the valves are fitted directly into air spring as well as manifold blocks with integrated sensor for rear levelling and four corner ride height. The end result is increased passenger safety and comfort, plus improved stability and control for off-road performance.

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