This project looks at the potential of blending ethanol with natural gasoline to produce Flex-Fuels (ASTM D5798-13a) and high-octane, mid-level ethanol blends. Eight natural gasoline samples were collected from pipeline companies or ethanol producers around the United States.
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The objective of this work was to measure knock resistance metrics for ethanol-hydrocarbon blends with a primary focus on development of methods to measure the heat of vaporization (HOV). Blends of ethanol at 10 to 50 volume percent were prepared with three gasoline blendstocks and a natural gasoline.
High-octane fuels (HOFs) such as mid-level ethanol blends can be leveraged to design vehicles with increased engine efficiency, but producing these fuels at refineries may be subject to energy efficiency penalties. It has been questioned whether, on a well-to-wheels (WTW) basis, the use of HOFs in the vehicles designed for HOF has net greenhouse gas (GHG) emission benefits.
Ethanol is a very attractive fuel from an end-use perspective because it has a high chemical octane number and a high
latent heat of vaporization. When an engine is optimized to take advantage of these fuel properties, both efficiency and
power can be increased through higher compression ratio, direct fuel injection, higher levels of boost, and a reduced need
for enrichment to mitigate knock or protect the engine and aftertreatment system from overheating.
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