Electric Supercharger Offers Diesel Efficiency For Gasoline Engines

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Controlled Power Technologies electric supercharger

Controlled Power Technologies electric supercharger

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Existing hybrid technology uses electrical energy stored in a battery to power an electric motor connected to an internal combustion engine, but there are other ways of harnessing electrical energy to help save fuel. Engineers in the UK have developed a new system where electrical energy can be used to drive a supercharger and boost performance.

Conventional superchargers are powered by a belt connected to an engine. As more power is dialed up, the supercharger draws more and more power away from the engine and in turn burns more fuel.

Last year, British firm Controlled Power Technologies (CPT) revealed an electric supercharging system developed for small fuel-efficient engines that does away with the belt system. Dubbed the Variable Torque Enhancement System (VTES), the system is ready for mass production and can be applied to all types of gasoline and diesel engines--including those already turbocharged.

CPT recently teamed up with German powertrain developer AVL List GmbH (AVL) and together the companies have unveiled a gasoline engine with the same CO2 emissions as a similarly powered diesel. The particular engine was a 2.0-liter four-cylinder gasoline unit with direct-injection technology and 197 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque available. When fitted in a Volkswagen Passat, the electrically-supercharged engine produces CO2 emissions of 159g/km. The regular 167 horsepower 2.0-liter TDI diesel Passat on the other hand emits 165g/km, while the 197 horsepower 2.0-liter TFSI gasoline version emits 194g/km.

CPT has also signed a deal with Switched Reluctance Drives Limited to start developing OEM units for sale later this year but so far no automakers have announced plans to use the electric supercharger.

The fully developed and production-ready device could prove timely in helping automakers meet governmental directives to cut average CO2 emissions and fuel economy levels for new cars in coming years.

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Comments (19)
  1. I bet VW wish they had these a few years back for the development of their twincharger system!

  2. this.... makes me hot. I wonder how much electric power it takes to get another couple pounds of boost. this really could be huge.

    Ps., that acronym is crap. superchargers are forced induction off a belt. Turbochargers are forced induction off exhaust pressure. This should be called (something electrically)charger,.... uhm.... PowerCharger? ElectroCharger? AwesomeCharger? i dunno. anything but VTES (i had to scroll back up to the article just to remember the name its THAT stupid)

  3. oh, i know this is completely unrelated but HECTOR.... if you dont mind,.. i wanna keep talking about these combo lights.... and i dont wanna have to flip back to the A6 article.... i saw your reply and I'm telling you, i still dont get it.

    ok, so you're not talking about unique lights under a single lens, you're talking lights that are actually used for multiple purposes. yeah you're going to have to give me examples. cause i've got a 2nd gen focus, and i had a 1st gen focus... and i haven't the slightest clue what you're talking about. I live in Canada, and before you go spouting about how thats the reason, realize that any car sold in USA is the same as the model that is sold in Canada. with exception to the fact that the warning labels (for the airbag and crap like that) are in french as well.

    Like i said, I've never noticed this issue that you're talking about where your brake light will flash instead of a separate turn signal. if you can think of one specific model.. that would be appreciated. I know we have mandatory running lights here but that doesn't change anything. just means your front lights are always on.

  4. You two should get a room!

  5. I can just see the ricers shouting VTES YO!!!

  6. well... since you brought it up; what are the chances of getting a message board instead of these article threads? cause after a day or two,.. the thread dies. If we had a message board system where you could see on one page, who has posted something new on each thread, then we could get a little more resolution to the debates that we get started here.

    besides, I really want to know what the heck hes talking about. cause the closest thing I've seen to what he's talking about is the new chryslers, where the front head light (only one) will shut off when the turn signal is on, to bring more attention to it. kinda good idea, but also very stupid cause i've seen a lot of new chryslers with burned out head lamps. they aren't made to turn on and off like that. If what he's saying is true, then it is really stupid. i just dont know what cars have it, and I've been looking. never seen it. Its really starting to annoy me. HECTOR!!!!!

  7. Parry; at least VTES would mean something. I swear if I hear another punk kid talk about VTEC, you'll hear reports from canada about a kid who went through the outer brick wall of a Tim Hortons.

    For those of you who aren't Canadian (just about all of you), Tim Horton's is a Canadian coffee shop with something like 3,000 locations. Many of them stay open 24hr, so you get a lot of ricer conventions on Friday nights in Timmy Ho's parking lots all over Canada. Mostly just body kits and K&N filters, but you get some Speed3's and STi's....... but mostly just a bunch of pubescent testosterone.

  8. Forums are coming soon as well as a complete site redevelopment. :)

  9. site redevelopment? i rather like the look of this site. Its nice and clean. update it all you want but don't clutter it up.. you go to other pages and theres banner ads all over the place, and... well they're all just a mess.

    when can we expect a switch?????!?!

  10. .........................................waaaaaaaaaaaaitttt... this doesnt have anything to do with today's date does it?

    ..........im just waiting for an april fools article from you guys.

  11. I like the idea, but looks like it's only applicable for low-powered engines. Can't imagine big electrical charger on car, it will draw too much power. Still good idea, but I'd rather see electrical brakes on car (there was an article about those few months back).

    As for forums on site, it was one of my comments during the survey period. And i think site can use redesign to make it little more user-friendly, it looks more like blog now.

  12. I love the way it is right now. Like a car magazine that you can leave comments on, and get feedback on.
    A forum is ok, but sometimes forums just go on forever and ever. Sometimes it's good when things vanish...

  13. re. site revamp. Homepage layout is A1 Spot on!
    Perhaps in the " Home, Reviews, Spy Shots, Supercars, Videos, Contact Us" section there can be a tab "Forum"?

    This way we can keep the short topic specific comments focused on a particular article and then have a separate forum section for "meaningful debate/drivel"

  14. Agree 100%.

    Please don't change the current format too much...

  15. i want 1 4 my next car which will have a 1.6 diesel with turbo,but will b fitting a hydrogen generator 2 reduce fuel consumption but increase power anyway

  16. Mechanical forced induction extracts mechanical energy directly from the car. This system extracts mechanical energy, turns it into electricity (incurring a loss), and transforms it back into mechanical energy. Does someone want to explain to me how converting mechanical energy to electrical energy then back to mechanical is more efficient than a belt driven supercharger? Seems to me the original way is more efficient.... or am I thinking too hard?

  17. The give away is that they suggest using it with a conventional turbo, not as a replacment. It's a ultra cool idea to have full boost at the flick of a switch, anyone who's owned a turbo knows they don't generate any boost without load, this system does. But, the limit is always going to be a car electrical system. They're using a 1.8KW motor to drive it, which draws about as much as a starter motor (350A)... that's probably the limit for a 12v car system. That's also why you don't see electricly driven A/C compressors in cars, they need 3-5kw to run, simply too much for a 12 volt system.

  18. Well I'm hoping one day cars will be able to draw solar power, brake energy and heat exhaust exchange energy to power such devices.

  19. This supercharger is the best invention after the mine, just I need a
    starter turbocharger in order to work in addition to the normal burned
    gas turbocharger also for low RPM. My invention is a DIESEL MOTOR 2 STROKES BY VALVES, that save the 30% of consumption.

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