Oil surface interface could help EU green targets
Research by European universities could help EU countries achieve better CO2 emissions and improve vehicle fuel economy.
Led by a team from the UK-based University of Leeds, with other universities in Portugal, Slovenia and Holland, the research will examine 'interface design'. This is an approach which looks at both lubricants and the surfaces they coat at the same time rather than separately. The intention is to design new automotive engine lubricant systems based on the reaction between the oil and any part it comes into contact with, known as 'the interface'.
The €6m ($8.1m) 2020 Interface project will run over three years, with assistance from Volvo, SKF, Lubrizol and Sulze and is aimed at significantly improving engine efficiency for both emissions and fuel economy, to meet increasingly tough EU environmental targets.
Part of the research focus will be on the use of surfaces made from diamond-like carbon (DLC) and the way lubricants bind to them. Nano technology is set to play a significant role in the research with coating tolerances of just 20 nanometres thickness.
Additive technology will also be examined, with the project covering petrol and diesel engines for commercial and private vehicles.