Constant efforts are being made to make our road vehicles more and more fuel efficient. While there is fuel economy to worry about, it has to be balanced with safety and comfort. Vehicles with high fuel economy are somehow compromised on safety and comfort. Fuel being used in cars is a non-combustible source of energy and we cannot rely on it forever. Also, the fuel prices are constantly increasing and it is hard to put a stop to it. Fuel economy is the most important these days but performance cannot be completely ignored either. It is a fact that the car with the maximum fuel economy will be slow and vulnerable on the road. Hence, development in automobiles somehow has to be balanced and that's what the brightest minds in the world are trying to achieve. Considering the most recent, here is a list of the 10 most advanced technologies that can make our cars more fuel efficient.
1. Pneumatic Chassis
At present, carbon fibers are being used in car manufacturing to keep the vehicles less heavy. A better solution for the future is the application of pneumatic chassis which can surprisingly reduce a car’s weight by up to 44 percent. Expandable pneumatic foil with a foam enclosure used in mostly the upper part of a commuter's chassis can considerably reduce the weight and help in increasing the fuel economy.
2. A new fuel efficient engine “HCCI”
Researchers at MIT have come up with a new fuel efficient engine called “HCCI”. With the outset of this technology, combustion is supposed to take place simultaneously at multiple points which will ensure less wastage of energy, a reduced amount of NO emission, and hence increased fuel economy by a great margin. It is still under development and when it is applied, it can save a million barrels of fuel a day.
3. Bubble-infused plastic to enhance fuel efficiency of cars
The latest technology that can considerably reduce the weight of the car without compromising on the safety is called “Mucell”. The idea is to use bubble-infused plastic in manufacturing cars which is super strong and super light. It can shed about 250-750 pounds from a car.
4. New fuel efficient concept for NAIAS
Ford Explorer is by far one of the best selling SUVs in the market. The changes brought in by Ford to their latest model have proved the worth of a new technology. The new Ford Explorer utilizes the “EcoBoost” technology which considerably improves the fuel economy by 20-30%.
5. BMW to use radioactive exhausts for better fuel efficiency
BMW is planning to equip their cars with a thermoelectric generator. The energy wasted in combustion which goes out of the exhaust will now be used in heating this thermoelectric generator which is likely to improve the fuel economy of our favorite BMWs by 5 percent.
6. Highly-efficient OPV (Organic Photovoltaic) modules
The earlier energy-efficient OPV (Organic Photovoltaic) modules had achieved a fuel efficiency of 4%. The latest development is likely to better the efficiency and will be highly integrated without affecting the overall cost of development.
7. World’s most efficient hydrogen fuel cell
Through the development of a new hydrogen fuel cell NKG Insulators Ltd claim to have achieved an efficiency of 63% which is much higher than before. It has been put to a test with a leading oil company in Japan. This will subsequently increase the fuel economy of vehicles by a great margin.
8. Shell Eco-Marathon contributing towards an energy efficient future
By virtue of the Shell Eco-Marathon Asia 2011, the brightest students from all over the world will challenge each other for the best fuel economic concepts. This is likely to open new doors for sustainable mobility in the coming future.
9. Cool Seats for Cool Ride and fuel efficiency
"ComfortCools" is the name given to the new ventilated seats which are likely to be used in the future cars. Researchers claim that using these seats can reduce the fuel consumed through air conditioners by 75%. Well, that makes a surprising 522 million gallons saving per year.
10. Combining gas and diesel engines
The concept of combining diesel and gas into a single engine is more like infusing the normal diesel engines with gas turbines. The cleanness of the gas turbines is to be combined with the power of diesel engine to create a hybrid of a new kind. The engine thus developed (CODAG) is likely to be far less polluting and a lot more powerful subsequently increasing the fuel economy and performance of road vehicles.