FEV Presents Converted Engine for H2-Operation
Saint-Quentin-En-Yvelines, March 2023 – FEV, a globally leading provider of engineering, development, testing and consulting services for the sustainable mobility and clean energy markets, is developing the world's first H2-converted 8.7-liter combustion engine for medium- and heavy-duty, on- and off-highway applications with NGV Powertrain.
With promises of a greener future through electrification lingering in the distance, and tightening emission requirements well within sight, the topic of hydrogen has been gaining enormous popularity with fleet owners and managers seeking the means to make their fleets compliant and keep operations running smoothly.
Pragmatic approach for zero CO2 medium and heavy duty transport
The ubiquity of the internal combustion engine has served to make it both celebrated and scorned in modern society. Enjoying a well-deserved reputation for being economic and robust, paradoxically, its wide-spread use has made it a leading contributor of carbon emissions. However, by fueling combustion engines with a non-carbon containing resource, numerous benefits can be achieved.
The retrofit ICE solution developed by FEV and NGV Powertrain offers economy and robustness and is an alternative to fuel cell or battery electric propulsion solutions. An absence of carbon in dihydrogen (H2) molecules promises significant reductions in NOx emissions. The innovative solution can be adapted to gas- or diesel-powered vehicles, with applications ranging from on-highway to agricultural to marine. Most importantly, the solution can be attained for a fraction of the cost compared to outright vehicle replacement, which reduces waste by extending the life of existing fleets.
8.7-liters of power, clean hydrogen operation
Like conventional fuels, there are two methods to inject hydrogen for use in internal combustion – gaseous through the intake manifold as (indirect injection) or directly into the combustion chambers as a liquid, similar to modern direct-injection systems. For ease of use and to simplify conversion efforts, FEV and NGV’s solution utilizes an indirect configuration. A turbocharger is employed due to the high volume of air required. Finally, software to monitor the engine parameters has to be adapted accordingly.
The sample engine features:
- Displacement: 8.7L
- Cylinders: 6
- Air management system: Turbocharged
- Injection: MPI
- Power: 230 kW (313 hp)
- Torque: 1.700 Nm@1300 rpm
- Combustion: Lean spark ignited
- Hydrogen injection pressure: 10-15 bars
Collaboration with NGV Powertrain
Investment in the project by the France Relance Plan, initiated by the French government, allowed FEV to invest in three test benches at its site in Saint-Etienne-du-Rouvray (Seine Maritime): two for development of hydrogen internal combustion engines and one dedicated to fuel-cell development, with a capacity of up to 240 kW (326 hp). For the “NGV-FP087” project, FEV worked on design and engine controls from its location in Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines and managed calibration and testing from its facilities in Saint-Etienne-du-Rouvray.
NGV Powertrain oversaw engine hardware and control system design, system integration (ECU, wiring harness, sensors, ATS, etc.), and production planning, as the company plans to offer the solution to OEMs, dealers, fleet owners, and independent installers. NGV Powertrain develops fuel-agnostic engine platforms, customized to utilize alternative-fuels. The NGV-FP087 H2 PFI engine is a natural extension of NGV Powertrain’s natural gas version.