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Nissan's clean diesel technology
To meet the California SULEV standards

Nissan clean diesel technology: Structure of HC-NOx-trap catalyst and NOx reduction.

Nissan clean diesel technology: cross-sectional diagram of the catalyst.

Nissan clean diesel technology: structure of the HC-NOx-trap catalyst and emission control system.

Press on the photos to open the larger images.

14 November 2007.

Last summer, Nissan announced a new clean diesel technology using high-performance catalysts that may be able to meet the State of California's standard for super-ultra-low emission vehicles (SULEVs), equivalent to the Tier2Bin2 emissions requirements.

To reduce diesel emissions, Nissan's new technology uses three components working together: modulated-kinetic (MK) combustion, high-performance catalysts, and advanced engine control systems.

While the modulated-kinetic combustion curbs toxic emissions at its origin-phase by simultaneously reducing oxides of nitrogen (NOx) and particulates, the new engine systems exert more precise control of oxygen in the exhaust for better fuel efficiency and less emissions.

Nissan says its unique Hydrocarbon-Oxides of Nitrogen (HC-NOx) trap catalyst technology comprises a breakthrough construction which incorporates a HC-trap layer in the NOx-trap catalyst. The HC-trap layer serves to trap the HC which is oxidized to generate hydrogen (H2) and carbon monoxide (CO), which in turn react with the NOx gases trapped by the NOx-trap layer to produce nitrogen (N2) and carbon dioxide (CO2) gases, in addition to water vapor (H2O) as end products. The chemical reactions reduce HC and NOx resulting in cleaner tail-pipe emissions.

The third Japanese carmaker had previously announced clean diesel technology that met the U.S. Tier2Bin5 emissions standards.

With this new HC-NOx trap catalyst technology, Nissan believes it will be able to achieve cleaner diesel emissions in future vehicles that will meet the stringent SULEV-standards set by the state of California.

In order to meet the SULEV-standards, hydrocarbons in vehicle emissions must be exhaust reduced by about 90% and NOx levels must be reduced by 70% versus Tier2Bin5 standards. That is 0.0062g/km (0.01g/mile) of HC(NMOG) against 0.0559g/km (0.09g/mile), and 0.0124 g/km (0.02g/mile) of NOx against 0.0435g/km (0.07g/mile) made possible by previous Tier2Bin5 technology.

Under the Nissan Green Program 2010, Nissan has announced plans to expand clean diesels to surpass current emission standards. Looking ahead, stricter regulations will be imposed in major markets including Japan, US, and Europe within the next few years.

These new clean diesel engines will comply with future exhaust emission regulations in these markets. In Japan, a new clean diesel engine is scheduled for introduction in the X-TRAIL SUV in autumn 2008. In the U.S., a clean diesel engine that complies with the Tier 2 Bin 5 requirements is scheduled to be available on the 2010 Maxima.

As of May 2006, 80% of all new gasoline-fuelled Nissan cars sold in Japan have been certified as Super Ultra-Low Emission Vehicles (SU-LEVs). Nissan estimates that the resulting effect on reducing exhaust emissions is virtually the same as if electric vehicles and other clean cars accounted for 40% of the company's unit sales volume in Japan. SU-LEVs emit 75% fewer oxides of nitrogen (NOx) and non-methane hydrocarbon (NMHC) emissions than vehicles complying with Japan's 2005 exhaust emission regulations.

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