14 July 2016

Umicore helps automakers step up to new emission standards

Opens USD 10M Expansion for Test Lab at Technology Center in Michigan

Umicore Autocat USA Inc. announces the grand opening of a USD 10 million, more than 4,000 sq. ft. expansion for its vehicle emission test laboratory at its Automotive Technical Center in Auburn Hills, Michigan.

The state-of-the-art facility develops and tests emission control systems based on advanced catalytic technology to provide automakers with solutions to meet regulatory requirements including the new U.S. 54.5 mile-per-gallon corporate average fuel-efficiency (CAFE) targets for 2025. New vehicles will be required to meet lower tailpipe emissions under federal Tier 3 standards, as well as California LEVIII requirements.

“This may be the most significant period of change impacting vehicle emission controls since the advent of automotive catalysts in the U.S. in the ’70s. Through our Technical Centers, we are helping automakers adapt emission control technology across different platforms and with diverse strategies,” said Pascal Reymondet, Executive Vice President Catalysis.

The USD10 million expansion at Auburn Hills features a state-of-the-art analytical room equipped with six analytical benches for HC, CO and NOx measurement and two FTIRs for other gas measurement (NH3, N2O) plus equipment to measure particle mass and particle number. The new dual-roll, 48-in. dynamometers can test 4x4s, all-wheel-drive (AWD) vehicles and hybrids according to the U.S. Federal drive cycles as well as for Europe and Japan. A vehicle stacker was added to improve vehicle soak times and vehicle testing efficiency.

The improvements to the facility now allow for an array of drivetrains and vehicle platforms to be tested – from diesel trucks and SUVs, to GDI (gasoline direct injection) engines, hybrid cars and even large motorcycles. The expansion will allow catalyst development for all fuels – diesel, CNG and E85, so whichever direction vehicle manufacturers take, Umicore can support.

Diesel Focus

“Some vehicle manufacturers are focusing on diesel fuel because it can help meet both fuel-economy and carbon dioxide emission requirements and also provides other benefits to the consumer as well (power, torque, drivability). This is a key development area since the U.S. is moving towards more SUV’s and pick-up trucks where diesel engines can be a clean and cost-effective solution for the future,” said Greg Garr, Director of Market Creation at the Auburn Hills Technical Center.

Diesel vehicles currently comprise about 4 percent of the U.S. fleet, and about 50 percent in Europe. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, using ultra low-sulfur diesel fuel as well as advanced emission control systems can reduce emissions of nitrous oxides (NOx) and particulate matter (PM) from diesel vehicles.[1] Umicore offers a portfolio of control technology for these and other vehicle emissions. (See Highlights.)

“We take pride in the fact that our automotive catalysts can successfully reduce harmful emissions by more than 99 percent for major pollutants – NOx, hydrocarbons (HC) and carbon monoxide (CO) – over the life of the vehicle. By focusing on superior technology, we help customers produce more fuel-efficient vehicles and meet present and future requirements of environmental legislation,” said Ken Zerafa, General Manager for Umicore Autocat USA.

Highlights:  Umicore Emission Control Technologies

<td "> Diesel Oxidation Catalysts (DOC)

For light- and heavy-duty diesel vehicles: For gasoline and hybrid vehicles:
- Selective Catalytic Reduction Catalysts (SCR) - Three-way catalysts
- SCR on Filters (SDPF) (based on palladium, rhodium, platinum and combinations)
- Ammonia Slip Catalysts (ASC)
- GDI Lean NOx Traps
- Lean-NOx Traps (LNT) - HC Traps
- Catalyzed Diesel Particulate Filters (CDPF) - Catalyzed Gasoline Particulate Filters (GPF)
- HC-based NOx Control (HC-DeNOx)  

[1] Chambers, Matthew, and Rolf Schmitt, “Diesel-powered Passenger Cars and Light Trucks,” U.S. Department of Transportation. October 2015.


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Tag: Automotive

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