At Pittsburgh Power Inc. we have always believed that by allowing more air to flow into the diesel engine for combustion and then allowing the burned exhaust gasses to pass out of the engine through the exhaust manifold, turbo and performance muffler with as little back pressure as possible, the fuel mileage will improve and the emissions will decrease.
When the semi truck is properly driven and the driver is paying attention to the turbo boost gauge and the tachometer, or using the Kevin Rutherford Fuel Gauge, and knowing what these gauges mean, the above statement is always true. Learning to drive at 58 to 62 mph also improves the fuel economy along with decreasing the emissions and somehow at these slower speeds we still get to where we are going.
Our government is very concerned about emissions and so are many of us in the transportation industry, we are outdoors people, we spend most of our time outside weather it’s driving, working on trucks with the garage doors open, or enjoying our sports. At Pittsburgh Power our new engineering center has been open for 6 months now and great strides have been made with our Desk Top Simulator to find problems with ECM’s, just last Friday we tested to Detroit Reman ECM’s and both were defective. We were not able to repair them and returned them to Detroit. With this though in mind, if you have what most shops consider and ECM failure, and they install a new Reman, and the same problem is still there, then it wasn’t the ECM. If another problem arises, then the new Reman may be at fault. Out desk top simulator has become a wonderful diagnostics tool for the Detroits, so we are in the process of building one for the ISX Cummins and the Caterpillar Engines. It’s so much more economical to find the problem first, and then fix it as apposed to throwing parts electrical parts at the truck that most shops won’t take back.
On to emissions testing, the engineers at Taylor Dyno have been working with our engineers and as of July 15, 2013 we will be able to test all of our products and your truck for emissions. Testing has already started on the DD4 Detroit the week of June 24th and with what I mentioned about air and exhaust flow, this is what we found:
Stock DD4 with waste gated turbo; Knox g/bhp break hp-hr was 4.45
With our ported and ceramic coated exhaust manifold - 3.68
Along with the manifold the 15% larger turbo, non wasted gated - 3.16
This test was performed with a Semtech Emissions Analyzer and the report is 1100 pages per test. This is an actual on highway California approved test with a loaded semi truck. As you can see by the results the ported and ceramic coated exhaust manifold and the 15% larger turbo resulted in a decrease of emissions by 29%. Just think what the results could have been if we would have had the time to install the Fleet Air Filter and the quiet performance straight through muffler which the two together allows the engine to improve fuel mileage by ½ mpg. The emissions might have dropped another 10 to 15%. As you can see, with two of our products we dropped 29%, just think what four of the products could do. And we haven’t even fined tuned this engine; it was just a bone stock DD4 Detroit. I think we all are going too amazed at what we can do to lower emissions and still have a great running truck in the next few months.
Something to think about; by increasing a semi truck’s fuel mileage from 6 to 7 mpg or gaining 1 mpg, 3,571 gallons of fuel will be saved every 150,000 miles driven. If we could increase all 4 million trucks in the USA by the 1-mpg, which is possible, the trucking industry would burn 14,284,000,000 gallons less each year. That is 14.284 trillion gallons, and eliminates 324 tanker loads of foreign crude oil, and 1,785,500 less tanker trucks delivering diesel to truck stops. I think that is quite an environmental impact for our great country at just 1 mpg, just think what happens when we get a 2 mpg improvement?
Now for some fun horsepower from cars, our engineering department has two chassis dynos, one for semi trucks, and one for pick up trucks and cars. We have had some very unique vehicles on the dyno this past month, a 1995 Camaro with a bored and stroked small block at 396 cubic inches that is blown and at 17 psi of boost produced 802 horsepower is female owned and raced. A Hemi Challenger, which is also blown and at 8 psi produced 620 hp and is just a weekend toy car. A beautiful black 1962 Nova, with a serious big block Chevrolet, however the car is tubbed and the wheels and tires have such a large inset they would not fit on the dyno, so no horsepower reading.
A class record holder at the Bonneville Salt Flats, 1993 Corvette with a 477 cu. Inch big block with two Big Cam 3; 400 Cummins Holset Turbos producing 22 psi of turbo boost and the horsepower was 1382. The speed this car ran at Bonneville last summer was 256 miles per hour. They are trying to hit the 300 mph this year.
Exciting things are happening at Pittsburgh Power and I will have more good news next month about improving emissions.
Written by Bruce Mallinson, Pittsburgh Power Inc., 3600 S. Noah Drive, Saxonburg, Pa. 16056. Phone 724-360-4080. Email; Bruce@Pittsburghpower.com