Just the other day, we told you about how Volvo is trying to save lives. Well, more news from the automotive world, as Audi has taken it one step further – they’re trying to save the planet.
Brought to our attention by the awesome people at IFLScience.com, Audi is spearheading a method to create “blue crude”, a man-made diesel emulator. Using only water and carbon dioxide, it’s carbon neutral, and works in diesel engines without any modifications needed for the system.
It sounds like spinning straw into gold, but the science is sound. By heating water at about 800 degrees C using renewable energy, it separates the hydrogen atoms from the oxygen atoms using high temperature electrolysis. The hydrogen is then removed and mixed with carbon monoxide under high heat and pressure, creating a hydrocarbon product that is sulfur and “aromatic” free, meaning it burns clean.
This technology, known as the Fischer Tropsch process, has been around for almost 100 years, and is actually being used where oil reserves are low but coal and gas is high, as the solution can be mixed with other fuels. But the fact that Audi, a car company synonymous with German engineering, power, and style, is taking up the reins means that this is not likely to go quietly into the night. Where smaller startups may have failed, Audi has generations of history behind it, and countless awards for innovation. It’s an exciting time to be watching the car companies I guess. We’ll have more 2-wheeled news coming soon.