Low-Cost Retrofit Emissions Control in Off-Road Sources

EPA Contract Number: EPD10023
Title: Low-Cost Retrofit Emissions Control in Off-Road Sources
Investigators: White, James H.
Small Business: Eltron Research & Development Inc.
EPA Contact: Manager, SBIR Program
Phase: I
Project Period: March 1, 2010 through August 31, 2010
Project Amount: $69,999
RFA: Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) - Phase I (2010) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: SBIR - Emission Reductions and Biofuels , Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR)


Considerable progress has been made in reducing emissions from stationary and highway sources. However, new emission standards require that new off-road (non-road) diesel engines achieve emissions of nitrogen oxides (NOx) and other species comparable to those from on-road sources. Additionally, biofuel (e.g., biodiesel) powered vehicles offer the potential for increased NOx emissions. There are currently no inexpensive, effective retrofits for either source category.

This SBIR Phase I project will apply certain aspects of Eltron’s new catalytic technology for reagent-free abatement of nitrogen oxides (which provides both direct decomposition and passive lean reduction activity) to off-road diesel engine exhaust.

A number of NOx abatement technologies (e.g., urea and hydrocarbon reduction) exist, but employment in mobile sources is impractical. These approaches are expensive, provide unacceptable performance, require additional hardware, impose costs for reagent use and storage, waste resources (urea or fuel), and emit additional CO2. The key objective of the project is development of an effective innovative, proprietary catalyst composition possessing exceptional activity for NOx removal from diesel exhaust. This catalyst does not require a supplemental reductant, reducing CO2 emissions, and has given activity in diesel exhaust that easily surpasses the target activity and Tier 3 standards for off-road diesel engines. It is superior to competing passive lean NOx catalysts and comparable to existing hydrocarbon (and urea) selective catalytic reduction (SCR) strategies at an estimated current cost of 25 percent of a catalytic NOx trap for a heavy off-road diesel engine. Phase I will improve catalyst activity for the application, identify preferred disposition of the catalyst, and test in real exhausts; it will result in a retrofit catalyst that offers performance comparable to existing technologies while minimizing cost.

At the conclusion of Phase I, Eltron Research & Development, Inc. will have demonstrated the feasibility of a passive lean diesel exhaust after-treatment technology for nitrogen oxides abatement. The technology also will be applicable to exhaust from biodiesel fired engines, lean burn gasoline engines, natural gas-fired boilers and turbines, and coal-fired combustion sources. At the conclusion of Phase II, Eltron anticipates working with a catalyst manufacturer to develop a prototype system for field application.

Supplemental Keywords:

small business, SBIR, EPA, biofuels, vehicle emissions, catalytic technology, diesel exhaust, exhaust gases, CO2 emissions, hydrocarbon SCR strategies, diesel emissions reduction, off-road source emissions, diesel retrofit emissions control, NOx abatement, air emissions, air pollution,

Progress and Final Reports:

  • Final Report
  • SBIR Phase II:

    Low Cost Retrofit Emissions Control in Off-Road Sources