On Board Oxygen Generating Membranes for Reduced Start-Up Emissions

EPA Contract Number: 68D50110
Title: On Board Oxygen Generating Membranes for Reduced Start-Up Emissions
Investigators: Nemser, Stuart
Small Business: Compact Membrane Systems Inc.
EPA Contact: Richards, April
Phase: I
Project Period: September 1, 1995 through March 1, 1996
Project Amount: $64,900
RFA: Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) - Phase I (1995) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: SBIR - Air Pollution , Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) , Air Quality and Air Toxics


Automobile three-way catalyst (TWC) are quite efficient at steady state operating temperature typically destroying 98% of incoming hydrocarbons (HCs) and carbon monoxide (CO). However, up to 80% of emissions occur during the first few minutes of Federal Test Procedure when the engine is running rich, the engine is cold and TWC has not reached light-off temperature. To significantly reduce HCs and CO emissions, methods to reduce start-up emissions must be found. Studies show oxygen enriched air (OEA) to engines significantly reduce HC and CO emissions and leads to quicker heat-up of TWC. The studies also NOx levels can be kept low. To date no compact means of supplying OEA has been identified.

Compact Membrane Systems, Inc.'s high oxygen permeability membranes will supply compact OEA systems to reduce start-up emissions. Their membrane system will be 30 times smaller than existing products and a 0.13 cubic foot module will supply 2000 cubic feet per hour of 26% OEA. Phase I will focus on building a prototype module for actual engine testing while Phase II will optimize both membrane and engine performance and evaluate long term testing.

Supplemental Keywords:

Scientific Discipline, Air, Toxics, air toxics, Environmental Chemistry, HAPS, Chemistry, mobile sources, Engineering, Chemistry, & Physics, Environmental Engineering, Federal Test Procedures, emission control strategies, oxygen generating membranes, air pollutants, emission control technologies, hydrocarbon, vehicle emissions, ambient air, membrane technology , automotive emissions, automotive exhaust, air pollution, automotive three way catalysts, carbon monoxide, hydrocarbons, start-up emissions, emissions contol engineering, automotive emission controls, membrane technology

Progress and Final Reports:

  • Final
  • SBIR Phase II:

    On Board Oxygen Generating Membranes for Reduced Start-Up Emissions