Reduction of NOX from Diesel Engines Using Nitrogen Enriched Air

EPA Contract Number: 68D60042
Title: Reduction of NOX from Diesel Engines Using Nitrogen Enriched Air
Investigators: Nemser, Stuart
Small Business: Compact Membrane Systems Inc.
EPA Contact: Richards, April
Phase: I
Project Period: September 1, 1996 through March 1, 1997
Project Amount: $70,000
RFA: Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) - Phase I (1996) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: SBIR - Air Pollution , Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) , Air Quality and Air Toxics


Diesel engines produce unacceptable high levels of nitrogen oxides (NOX) at high loads. One method to reduce NOX emissions is the use of exhaust gas recycle (EGR). A 25% EGR leads to a 50% reduction in NOX. Problems with EGR include: 1) extra pumping and cooling of EGR stream, 2) engine wear from recirculating engine soot, and 3) high feed air water vapor levels.

Nitrogen enriched air (NEA) should accomplish similar NOX reductions as EGR while avoiding pumping, cooling, wear and water vapor issues discussed above. Research indicates using 82% NEA is equivalent to 22% EGR for reduction in NOX emissions and reduces NOXby 40%. Compact Membrane Systems, Inc.'s membrane technology should prove to be 5-20 times more productive than competitive membrane offerings allowing small systems to supply needed NEA. During Phase I, they will: 1) do membrane and engine simulations to optimize membrane/engine design and performance, 2) build full-scale membrane modules and demonstrate, 3) install full-scale membrane module on engine and do preliminary engine tests. This is a dual use technology since the membrane can also supply oxygen enriched air for reduced cold start emissions.

Supplemental Keywords:

small business, SBIR, air emissions, engineering, chemistry., Scientific Discipline, Air, Toxics, air toxics, Environmental Chemistry, Chemistry, HAPS, mobile sources, Atmospheric Sciences, Engineering, Chemistry, & Physics, Environmental Engineering, ambient air quality, emission control strategies, Nitrogen Oxides, motor vehicles, air pollutants, diesel engines, vehicle emissions, hazardous air pollutants, membrane technology , particulate emissions, air pollution, automotive exhaust, ambient emissions, diesel exhaust, nitrogen enriched air, diesel exhaust particles, diesel, vehicular exhaust, nitrogen oxides (Nox), exhaust, atmospheric chemistry, diesel & gasoline emission sampling

Progress and Final Reports:

  • Final
  • SBIR Phase II:

    Reduction of NOx From Diesel Engines Using Nitrogen-Enriched Air