FPT Industrial launches R&D project for alternative fuel in heavy-duty engines

Companies & MarketsNews
January 26, 2021

January 26, 2021

FPT Industrial, Turin, Italy, a brand of CNH Industrial specialising in the design, production and sale of powertrains for on and off-road vehicles, marine and power generation applications, has launched a project for the development of alternative fuel in heavy-duty engines.

FPT Motorenforschung, Arbon, Switzerland, the company’s research and development centre, is developing the use of DME (Dimethyl-ether, CH3-O-CH3), an alternative fuel used in an 11-litre heavy duty engine. The centre is one of seven global R&D locations. Common Rail technology and the HI-eSCR (High Efficiency Selective Catalytic Reduction system) were both developed at the Arbon centre.

DME is said to be a suitable fuel for compression ignition engines and can be produced from several renewable sources. Its chemical properties allow for, with the correct engine hardware configuration and calibration, significantly low NOx and particle emissions, whilst maintaining high engine efficiency. FPT has stated, however, that there are still some challenges in the use of DME as a fuel, particularly in terms of the fuel injection equipment.

DME has been industrially used for decades, mainly as a propellant in aerosol cans as it is non-toxic, odourless and can be absorbed in the troposphere. From a storage and refuelling point of view, DME is like liquefied petroleum gas (LPG): liquid at very moderate pressure levels.

The project is funded by Swiss Federal Office of Energy (SFOE) and the test bench is operated at the Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology (Empa) in Dübendorf, Switzerland, where the company states it has invested heavily in the infrastructure adaptations necessary for DME.

FPT Industries explains that the overall goal of the project is to advance the understanding of using DME as an alternative to diesel in the industrial goods sector and demonstrate clean combustion at comparable efficiency levels. Since DME combustion produces practically no particle emissions, a comparably simple SCR system, without the need for a particle filter may be enough to comply with strict emission standards.

The project’s first experimental data reportedly shows promising results in terms of CO2 reduction, along with significantly low NOx and particle emissions, together with similar engine efficiency to diesel.

The company states that it is facing a major challenge with the requirement to reach the European CO2 emission targets in 2025 and 2030. The use of alternative fuels and e-fuels are possible paths to addressing these challenges.


Companies & MarketsNews
January 26, 2021

In the latest issue of PM Review…

Download PDF

Extensive Powder Metallurgy industry news coverage, and the following exclusive deep-dive articles and reports:

  • From powder modification to rejuvenation: Fluidised Bed Reactors in metal powder production and Additive Manufacturing
  • Retech: Enabling the atomisation of reactive and refractory alloys at substantially higher levels of productivity and lower cost
  • Sustainability in Powder Metallurgy: Highlights from the 41st Hagen Symposium
  • Innovations from Japan’s Powder Metallurgy industry: award winners highlight novel automotive and healthcare applications

The latest news from the world of metal powders, delivered to your inbox

Don't miss any new issue of PM Review, and get the latest industry news. Sign up to our weekly newsletter.

Sign up

Join our community

Discover our magazine archive…

The free-to-access PM Review magazine archive offers unparalleled insight into the world of Powder Metallurgy from a commercial and technological perspective through:

  • Reports on visits to leading PM part manufacturers, metal powder manufacturers and industry suppliers
  • Articles on technology and application trends
  • Information on materials developments
  • Reviews of key technical presentations from the international conference circuit
  • International industry news

All past issues are available to download as free PDFs or view in your browser.


Browse the archive


Looking for PM production equipment, metal powders, R&D support and more?

Discover suppliers of these and more in our
advertisers’ index and buyer’s guide, available in the back of PM Review magazine.

  • Powders & materials
  • Powder process, classification & analysis
  • PM products
  • Atomisers & powder production technology
  • Compaction presses, tooling & ancillaries
  • Sintering equipment & ancillaries
  • Post-processing
  • Consulting & toll sintering
View online
Share via
Copy link