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Everything posted by fleebut

  1. The speculation below, still rings true. From my knowledge base of working in small international Corp. top executives, investment, engineering, and financial information, my personal take on 25 year out has a few known conclusions. First we are reliant upon international financial health. Meaning our economy is hooked to financial health of other countries. Were are not an island and must work to help or not deter financial well being of other large economies. Second there is no conspiracy of oil wealth and influence upon the country. Wealthy corporations have always had this influence. Nothing new here. Third, politicians even though they spew out partisan rhetoric for pubic consumption, all work to improve their own wealth and stay in power. They will not kill the milk cow as they have a great thing going. Even to the point of not caring of control or change. Meaning they only need to impress a slight majority of their constituency to stay in power. If they are exceptional in spin and deceit they win. It's actually easier to be within the minority party as it is easier to blame others and not work so hard. But, having said that, they are concerned of countries interests, they will work to make good decisions, but (unknown to us) they work much more either directly or indirectly with political opponents. They all hate disruption to the status quo as that will threaten their wealth and historical significance. I will name this the Milk Cow Theory. So, given this what's going on with ethanol? The petrol industry is in a big hurt. The industry massive ability to improve the countries wealth is sorely needed and needed more now than anytime in history. So, the movers and shakers upon gov't and business are directly or indirectly communicating that all parties need to understand their place. That disruption at this time in history is bad as the economic health for change is just not available. So, bio-fuel can stomp and complain of rigged markets, but the power brokers will make sure they can't disrupt the status quo. The best they can hope for and what has been planned for them, is minimal sustained growth. Since other countries are not so dependent upon oil wealth their bio fuel production will move at higher growth rates. All the U.S. elites will work together to minimize disruption, so petrol fuel will reign supreme. Politicians will attempt to appease all, with a modicum of support and silently empower the status quo. Sure, politicians offer lots of rhetoric, but actual work to make it happen goes to business as usual folks. If you want to be a power broker and improve your plight and finances in life, you better go along to get along. No disruptors need apply. This goes for Wall Street, Insurance Companies, politicians, and all the powerful players i.e. Google. Their is some value to main street for this. It's not the typical founding principles or the way gov't of the people are supposed to govern, but in serious threatening times, the voting public throws all wisdom out the window and grabs onto such solutions. Solutions that are sold to them and so easily believed. History has a long record of the public wishing to avoid hurtful remedies and vote to keep the good times going. Business as usual, can maintain itself, until the majority get fed up or catch on. The best solution is always do this continually or at least upon a gradual ramp of change and not to demand it immediate.
  2. Reading the forecast for light duty vehicle fuel supply out to 25 years, not good. Grain ethanol is flat and cellulosic just a meager bump up on already minimal production. This tells me they figure only corn kernel fiber cellulosic production will occur. The rest of the world will increase biofuel production, but the U.S. maintains a holding pattern. Alternative fuel will increase, but the stats include diesel in that mix. FLEX vehicles production flat and continue on at about 10% of vehicles. Alternative vehicles sales now 18% and by 2040 will grow to whopping 61%, but of that mix the micro hybrid will have 34%, This is the start stop technology so easily justified. Mild hybrids probably come in 2rd to this, but they didn't say. Diesel will become more popular within the market. Carbon batteries appear to be continue in popularity. Not much on the lithium or fully battery powered cars. Gasoline consumption will drop dramatically down 2.3 million barrels per day and this is why ethanol has such a hard time increasing volumes. Gasoline and ethanol about the same price spread with gasoline inflating to $3.81/gallon (not bad). So, speculating what's going on here. No super premium ethanol fuel blend as that would dramatically push ethanol fuel consumption up. Price of energy will be cheap and traditional ICE auto per value will maintain popularity. The vehicle will steadily improve efficiency and make battery car ownership or ethanol fuel less attractive. Diesel will be the choice for extra cash and lower fuel bills. No concern of fuel bill when your car gets 60+ MPG. GW fears abate as solutions to the problem fold in and no noticeable ramifications occur within weather as was so hyped up. Even if ethanol did go to negative carbon, in the future that may not be a highly desirable source of energy. GW concerns fade. Also, one would have to contemplate if these numbers have deflation or stagnation cooked into the mix? The International economies are performing badly and some are comparing this time in history to post WWI economic malaise. Most predict anemic economic growth for decades due to national debts. Civil unrest will occur from poor as they can't gain and suffer the most. Government easy money rescue days are over. This is the best scenario, a slow steady slog to prevent melee. I think we will just float or bob about not knowing what to do and most will be to busy working to maintain status quo. Everyone will be looking for a victim to punish and deflect voter anger per finger pointing exercise. Lawsuits will be hunting for victims and business people will be looking to maximize what they already have and automate to decrease troublesome employees that complain and always demand more. I'm sure corporations will maximize political clout per advertising they are the good guys or supporting the political class. This is actually a good scenario as out boarding analysis have to include international inflation, deflation, civil unrest, and war per political need. Still a majority of people have better info, nowadays, and understand the political chicanery that will bring bad results. They can't as easily be fooled. Hopefully, examples such as Marcos or Chávez solutions fade with lessons learned.
  3. I do believe ethanol is headed for the evental rating of carbon negative and yes the other alternative energy sources will contribute to the endeavor at the farm, process plant, refueling stations, and distribution. Just switching the boilers to biomass will decrease carbon rating of the plant 30%. How about utilizing waste heat from power generators? CHP process equipment just starting to be utilized. Same for cogeneration.
  4. Ethanol’s carbon intensity review is not a yea or nay nor a success or failure of the entire industry. It’s just a snapshot estimate of overall carbon intensity condition. Only a fool would make a generalised overall condemnation of ethanol based on such estimates. If the country is not happy with ethanol carbon intensity, make it better. There are 100’s of ways to do that. Most of them common sense, learned, with the requirement of additional investment. If extra low carbon energy is of paramount concern, invest in making it happen. We’re doing that for grid power. Compare that task to making fossil fuel less carbon intense. The potential scale of improvement of ethanol is limited only by our inventiveness. The endeavor has many paths to success. Currently, every participant has a shovel ready to do list. A real
  5. If were to make assumptions, where is the assumption that biofuel is providing more resources for farmers, in general, to improve? To afford modern equipment and to learn to become more efficient. With more resources they can and more motivated to gain education and to learn of from valuable input from our agriculture universities that suddenly have invested interests in the effort due to the high value of biofuel to the nation. This all rubs off upon the farmers general knowledge and abilities to run the farm better with all crops. This, again is a huge factor as well as to attract more talent upon the industry.
  6. Ethanol’s carbon intensity must be moderated by the huge benefit to improve the efficiency of gasoline. Think of efficiency gains upon ICE in the near future with super premium E30 fuel. Even E15 as reported, the Ford focus suffers no BTU efficiency loss with ethanol. Meaning no MPG loss. This may be typical with modern vehicles? The carbon efficiency gain must be attributed to ethanol fuel. Most studies miss this or merely put an asterisk stating the the benefit, but it will always go uncalculated and untabulated. It’s to hard, yet they can accurately determine indirect land use. Lol! Ethanol is the octane boost champion. Thermal efficiency formulas are primary based upon air compression. This is the major driving force of the internal combustion engine efficiency. The efficiency gains depend on engine strength and high octane fuel. Need I say more.
  7. Carbon sequestration within soil is best accomplished by the root zone, micobacteria, and fungi. These forces are just beginning to be exploited as we begin to better understand biology. We should expect great improvements in soil carbon intensity and fertility. GMO technology is expected to put a premium on improving farm planting to do just this. The Decicco analysis just blows this away with assuming it’s insignificant.
  8. Removing rotting debris from farmland is incredibly GW emission efficient. Something old forests can’t accomplish. Old forests are rated carbon neutral for this reason.
  9. Agriculture is so incredibly powerful for biofuels as the industry already has in place all the tools to make it more efficient. Biofuels is just another branch of agriculture. Think of the incredible efficiency they have developed for harvest. How does that compare with forestry or setting up solar panels?
  10. Farmer decision making skill set is a incredibly honed ability with honed learned management skills that would be impossible to distill to gross assumptions. Decisions are made and a whole host of complex matters and best guess intuition. Their livelihood depends on being correct most of the time. Professors haven’t a clue upon the profession nor the ability or motivation of the career. So, very dangerous for them to make assumptions in a vacuum. Maybe they should poll farmers to improve their estimates.
  11. Farmers have maximum motivation to produce more on expensive land than simply buy or rent more land. Especially true for land rents based on acres as well as property taxes. .
  12. The feed value of corn improved in entirety per the fermentation process, higher protein content, and nutrition. So, it is not a one for one substitution per pound with corn. I would expect distillers grains will become a normal and healthy addition to all livestock and the value of corn will diminish as consumers put a premium on healthy food production.
  13. John Decicco's latest study of ethanol is worse than gasoline for carbon intensity has prompted my thoughts on what CI studies often miss or make wrong assumptions. Decicco for example makes an assumption that corn for ethanol is a displacement of the normal crop. That farmers some place must plant more corn to accommodate the non-ethanol market shortage. He assumes the historical disruptions during the ethanol production years of farming is a direct result of ethanol RFS. That the farm production system is static and the farmland would be merely expand or contract acres per ethanol. Also, that the plantings all do in fact convert CO2, so, that conversion must be subtracted from ethanol. Meaning if they did not plant corn for ethanol they would plant corn for feed or just another crop. These anti ethanol calculations always assume Land Bank is pristine grassland, but per my observation around here the land is sick with sparse weeds and of no value except for federal subsidy. Besides the land is supposed to be “farm land”. Meaning if and when the farmer decides to farm the land, that is just the way it is. Remember the snapshots of space orbit that labeled the highest areas of photosynthesis. It wasn’t temperate jungle, it was the mighty corn fields converting CO2 to starch and fibre.
  14. Have you read the UM DeCicco’s report? You know with his ABC analysis; ethanol is more polluting than plain gasoline. It is confusing report with confounding info that claims we mustn't automatically claim that ethanol is carbon neutral. That at every stage of production we need to calculate the carbon in and carbon out. He claims that merely calculating the carbon emissions is not good enough as the life cycle calcs focus on. What the heck is he talking about? I read the report 2x and can only figure out that he is damming agriculture and making simplistic assumptions. Such as any distortion upon farming decisions is a result of the RFS. Also, that the farm would plant and grow vegetation without ethanol. So, he calculates that only the carbon above and beyond normal farm operations need be attributed to ethanol. Meaning the natural carbon cycle of vegetation continues even without ethanol, so the corn plant benefit must detract that value before reducing carbon for ethanol. It's pretty stupid thinking. The usual nomenclature of assumptions making an ass out of you and me. We could all come up with a dozen or so schemes to calculate the benefits of ethanol or the demerits of gasoline. This guy is throwing is precious PHD creds behind his vaulted sophisticated stats and analysis, but the any common sense farmer will scratch their head and thick of BS.
  15. I read MIT has calculated and ascertained that vintage LL100 fueled aircraft are polluting our skies and inflicting a $billion to $billion and one half loss of GNP per lower IQ of residents. http://news.mit.edu/2016/unfriendly-skies-piston-engine-aircraft-pose-significant-health-threat-0826 Well, people aren't falling over dead, so no emergency. That's how our regulators and gov'ts work the safety issue. For example It's of no concern to the regulators of fire retardants if they make your home airspace toxic. Their mission is fire safety. They get graded and patted on the back for improving fire safety per retardants within all household materials. Same for food. They are only motivated to kill germs and could care less if their actions destroy nutrition or health benefits of good food. I read the FAA regs are crushing any attempts to improve health benefits of toxic engine exhaust. From an Engineering viewpoint I know they determine the unknown as potentially dangerous. That they have a lot of data and knowledge of old systems. So, they will not budge without a flotilla of "free" gov't money utilized to study the change. You can't be to safe. Flying enthusiasts just recycle old planes as the FAA has cut off any attempt to cost effectively improve the industry as a bevy of lawyers dare them to risk change. What have we invented in this country? What kind of economic, regulatory, and legal nuttiness have we invented?
  16. Ever wonder why the U.S. has an epidemic of mental health concerns. Some claim it's a corrupt health field that are, basically salesmen for big pharma products. I'm sure the U.S. owns that market, nonetheless more and more are struggling with mental health. Read this '00 link on lead pollution, "The Secret History of Lead". https://www.thenation.com/authors/jamie-lincoln-kitman/ Wow, sobering stats and to think the cost to humanity just to prevent ethanol fuel from entering the market. I do know that the leaded paint bogyman was blown way out of proportion, because the other felons didn't want to attract attention. Government and business decided to finger leaded paint for all concerns. Present day we find lead just about everywhere and the sum total may be weighing hard on our mental health. I read that incineration for the deceased may be regulated out of business. Come to find out our bodies have a life time deposit of heavy metals and toxins that shouldn't be vented to atmosphere. They are talking of burial only and best solution is to just smear corpse in fungi spores with natural earth burial. The fungi are one of the few organisms that can decompose heavy metals. Did you notice the lack of turmeric spice? Come to find out a health proponent's book had discovered the depth and breath of lead in this spice. For once the FDA quickly took action and found that the spice is riddled with lead and most of it coming from India. They claim the growing fields contaminated from leaded fuel use as so goes the rest of the planet. They still sell leaded gasoline. Why on earth should informed citizens fear ethanol as the petrol industry attempts to sway our thinking?
  17. Some may question the recyling of lead acid and think the lithium battery is a superior environmental choice. The claim is commonly made of lithium being better for the enviroment. Compare that statement to the scientific research steady attempting to reclaim lithium. Read the challenges to dispossal services. This link, a short tidbit of good info to the lead acid debate for environment and value concerns. https://www.hmndgroup.com/advantages-of-lead-acid/
  18. Also, as the grid becomes less carbon intense, that will improve ethanol carbon rating, as well. Meaning, some think the progression of wind and solar energy upon the grid will empower the battery car and leave the competition in the dust. Not so, especially, if wind power and solar is generated at the farm and/or process plant. So, ethanol is a potent path to utilize renewable energy. Just in a liquid more easy to use and store form. Especially, when one considers the fuel should drop well into negative carbon rating when the pure CO2 fermentation co-product is utilized to plastic feed stock, food, or fuel as expected. Grid power could never go into negative rating status as compared. Ethanol fuel and equipment that burns the fuel are highly sustainable and recyclable. It's the natural biological process that dovetails so well with nature. It's the readily available and recyclable iron, steel, and aluminum metals. Compare that with unsustainable battery power (unsustainable because of rare earth metal needs) and their dependence upon technologies that generate so much electronic waste. Our landfills already brimming with electronic trash. Putting our energy sector upon high reliance of foreign rare earth minerals is a horrible vulnerable condition, worse than import oil reliance. You do notice these energy sources receive no penalty for these "changes" as compared to the infamous land use change penalties applied to ethanol? How much penalty to apply to energy forms that need military power to protect rare earth mines? How about the single source manufacturers and processors? The electronic and battery cars produce toxic trash that is expensive or impossible to recycle. It's corrosive to healthy clean environment. As compared, the ICE contains easy to recycle steel and aluminum. A simple low cost vehicle may be the least damaging of all for the environment. Simple lead acid battery and easy to recycle components. I do believe when my daughter needed a car for college, the decision back some years to recycle a cheap Tempo was the most environmentally decision to be made. This was even before my Representative starting crowing about cash for clunkers and how good that would be. The old car was clean and classic vintage. It was destined to scrap yard, but for $1,000 bill to rebuild. The car always bettered 25 mpg, ran E85 like a champ, and continued on for an additional 100,000 miles. So, what are the life cycle emissions of this? Better than a new battery car I would guess. If you think so, tell me how environmentally friendly the decision to purchase the $8,000 Elio car would be? The car is assembled from mostly off the self hardware that achieves close to 80 mpg with traditional ICE technology. The car should be 100% easy to recycle and the car will replace the most polluting class of vehicle (old worn out ones). The vehicle could burn mid level ethanol in present form. If ever we had an ethanol optimized engine for the vehicle and cellulose Miscanthus fueled, well, the vehicle wold achieve environmental rating far and above anything available within the foreseeable marketplace. Not bad for a $8,000 vehicle. The vehicle would dramatically save the consumer money on top of environmental benefit. How easy to fix the Elio, such a simple car. Last night, my local news had a segment on stranded motorist. The tow companies are extremely busy and not with old worn out cars, but the new ones. These cars have complicated systems, with much electronics and highly computerized. They have high power demands and often wreak havoc with battery life. These cars often have two batteries. One that is less visible and often forgotten. Come to find out these cars take much more battery power and shorten battery lifespans. They have complex systems that are hard to trouble shoot and repair. The car will use power even if parked. Few know how to fix them.
  19. Green house gas emissions- The analysis of where carbon energy is utilized within ethanol production and possible improvements to impact thel fuel rating. The future looks to push even grain (corn) ethanol to negative carbon. Know that the process plant is where all the energy is consumed. That fertilizer and farm use of petrol products is minimal as compared. The CHP process can really improve the numbers. Heat recuperation or reuse is easy to do within a process that has so much low grade heat needs. Boimass boiler will improve the carbon rating 30% alone. The anaerobic digester is becoming standard fare and may play into local farm process of animal wastes. Primary distillation is giving away to osmosis membrane technology (I think?). Wet distillery grains are getting popular, localized plant direct sales and distribution is getting more popular, and thermal waste heat energy parks. Spiritwood station coal plant is one such power plant that makes for a cheap and low carbon heat source for ethanol. With CHP process the coal power plant efficiency jumps to 69%. This will effectively cut emissions by one half as compared to traditional coal power plant at 33%. Ethanol process is but one of customers for heat.
  20. Developing alternative feed stocks- As you know the evaluation and testing continues within R&D work.Same for process improvements. The horizon does indeed look bright for biofuel, but the fuel market is saturated with low cost petrol and natural gas supplies, at present. The U.S. is concerned with the financial health of this sector and most politicians see little need in advancing 2rd generation fuels at this time. If gasoline would be $1/gallon higher, you would witness an avalanche of incentives to maximize ethanol production. The battery car suffers equally. GW fears have abated as technology and solutions appear to be able to minimize the concern. There are capable technologies present and waiting for the green flag. One of the largest is Miscanthus feed stock for ethanol. Present day rating of this fuel is negative carbon. Wow! You burn more fuel to improve GW. The grid will never catch up to that rating. The plant has amazing abilities to improve soil carbon and grow feed stock material for cellulosic fuel. So, it would appear farmers will utilize the plantings to rest farm soil and improve fertility for later use. All of the ethanol processing plants are poised to greatly reduce carbon emissions. So, much technology can be utilized by these process centers to achieve negative carbon fuel ratings. Consider the CHP technology, alone, could boost the return on ethanol energy from 3 to one to 427 to one. How, about if the industry adapted anaerobic digester equipment to improve water treatment, gas supplies, and fertilizer production? How about the practice of local farmers dumping off cattle or cow excrement to be treated with the equipment and returning home with the more environmentally friendly fertilizer from the process. Or they could return with wet distillery grains that works to reduce ethanol's carbon rating. Process pants have yet to utilize much solar or wind power within the process. Much of the wind power probably available on site with some investment. Biomass, can easily displace natural gas for an additional 30% improvement in carbon rating. Pure CO2 is a valuable co-product that mainly goes underutilized. Analyst believe this gas stream will supply yet another energy and feed resource per algae farming. Technology is advancing to utilize catalytic cracking of the gas to plastic feed stock. This is gaining much attention as the pure CO2 feed stock will not contaminate the catalysis and make it an economical process. While the battery car has a bright future within extremely light duty metro transportation market, the heavier duty, higher torque market, with maximum range is out of reach. This is a natural market for low carbon ethanol fuel. Maybe one day the fuel cell could add value, but for the foreseeable future ethanol should be the primary driver. Especially, if GW were ever accredited to a threat status, nothing beats cellulosic Miscanthus ethanol. We do know with the tabulation of U.S. biomass alone is enough for the entire fuel market. Factor in the international market, it would be much easier task. Remember all the talk that civilization would implode once we ran out of fossil fuel? What a joke that was!
  21. The headline for the albedo study reads as if scientists have discovered yet anther negative impact of ethanol fuel. You read the article and realize the headline should read something like, " Scientist put ethanol rating under the microscope to find Miscanthus cellulosic a negative carbon fuel." I do believe the carbon rating methodology of ethanol leaves no stone upturned, to arrive at the most accurate rating, whereas the competition is never studied to such length. The assumptions and indirect penalties, mostly go to favor the competition. The CAFE ratings, regulations, and story line only concern themselves with the urgency to improve the grid for transposition needs. It's very popular within our environmental group to skip past the ethanol solution. Not much buzz out there in favor of scientific evaluations, that claim the hybrid vehicle a better choice for environment. Note, in such studies they will never evaluate the most efficient hybrid operating on E85 fuel. They choose to utilize natural gas instead. So, in my book if a natural gas hybrid vehicle is such a intelligent choice wouldn't a high level ethanol vehicle be a home run? If Miscanthus already rated at negative carbon fuel, how could the grid improve upon that? It appears the scientific community is putting ethanol under the microscope to discover some hidden reason not to use the fuel? Meanwhile, proponents of battery car, will quickly dismiss the infrastructure cost of improving the grid as merely as a skip and jump away. While improving the grid is a worthy venture, they want to utilize the improvement for light duty transportation, wherein in reality the conventional vehicle technology is already rapidly improving. Meaning, the grid has enough challenge to improve itself and the rate of improvement best left to improve traditional grid needs.
  22. I've witnessed this phenomenon many times, especially within business or industry experience. It is getting worse. Modern politics have developed a conformance measures that have maximum power to destroy private citizens and business wealth. Nowadays, this revenue stream is a growing and most valuable income to government coffers. They have pushed regs and law to afford an immense latitude to punish wrong doers. This is beyond the original intent to dis sway entities to not act bad. Government alone has coercive force that acts as a deterrent, but I will say the combination is a threat to citizens enjoyment of life within the country. The IRS and EPA probably the two biggest offenders. They act as unelected tyrants sometimes. Some shout hurray when for example Volkswagen or Shell get hammered as that fits within their agenda of dislikes. I'm a little shocked of the gov't control of media and power they sway. One example of dozens, that I have personally experienced. A private company with stellar employment retention and safety record got hammered, that I worked for. Everyone knew what was going on and truthfully. A beloved community preacher of high character (minority) was friends with the owner. He pushed his influence to get his son in law hired by the company. This guy was nice and GQ quality. But it was evident that his narcissism or ego was damaged upon a good pay machine operator job. I think he was influenced to much from typical culture that influences youth and although popular, highly corrosive to themselves and society. Need I say more? Anyways, he devised a scheme to drill his hand per automation of the machine. He immediately sought legal damages to max. He lost, but the federal Health and Human services was unleashed to punish the company. I had to show the recent grad (minority) all around the shop. It was obvious her bias and prejudice. Not even working from regulation manual, she just pointed and demanded costly changes. We didn't argue, just implemented stupid requirements. All who go up against such action must drop to their knees and offer no negative propaganda/complaints of the gov't action. The press will go wild with tabloid news that is carefully screened by fed talent. This is just wrong and a very unattractive development. So, my guess your blaming the wrong person. Toyota is just following company procedure to stay out of gov't trouble zone.
  23. Project Creed reads like a pretty good report on '03 Prius running E85. The check engine light did come on, but only because the engine controller could detect the fuel. The system still maintained proper fuel operation and engine conditions. Meaning the check engine light was meaningless as the owner probably already knew they were burning E85. I think auto companies are forced to do this as it is of paramount concern of the EPA. They do not want the car company or consumer to easily get away with a flex fuel vehicle without their agency getting the certification money. Meaning, it isn't legal unless they say so, and require auto companies to make sure the car doesn't operate on high blend ethanol. I posted a while back that my wife's '09 ford focus suffered E85 fueling because apparently the engine controller put the operation into limp mode. This is a mode to really impress the owner they need garage work. I'm quite sure the EPA regulators required this for the sole purpose of preventing citizens from gaining a flex fueled vehicle without their permission. The '03 Prius operated with much air emission improvements. Only upon cold starts did the fuel emit more, but the operation mode more than offset the entirety. In my book this is excellent results as the engine is designed or engineered for gasoline. If ever they worked to optimize the engine for E85 fuel, that would be a double improvement, even in cold start operation. These gasoline vehicles will always sabotage fuel mileage with E85 operation per the oxygen sensor. Meaning the vehicle is tuned to gas with transmission and operating parameters all the way around. The current fleet of vehicles (as you know) is not designed to maximize ethanol per down speeding and downsizing. They don't exploit the octane boost for more efficient high compression and high boost, nor early ignition advance . I really think the EPA is missing the intent of lawmakers with ethanol. The agency focuses on their control power and conformance without regard to overall reduction in pollution. They never allow open market influence to do the job of regulators, preferring instead to sort out the fly poop from the pepper at maximum control and cost.
  24. The Mahle igniter, should improve cold start emissions. With current spark plug technology, the system has weak power. Meaning the voltage is high, but amperage low. Old coil and point systems had more energy from battery power. This generated more heat at the spark plug, but unfortunately was hard on metal components. The Mahle igniter is multitude more powerful of an ignition device. Also, the small igniter chamber is the only environment that needs rich fuel supply of combustion air. This should drastically cut down on cold start emissions. Ethanol blends will cut down sooting, but must be above E15 for the benefit. This is also good for the direct injection engine as higher ethanol blends will keep the valve carbon buildup at bay. My guess the short trip and especially the cold weather short trip will be addressed within operator and auto control inputs. If the short trip is routine the operator may purchase a plugin in hybrid with proper battery power to get the job done without engine operation. This would be a small percentage of owners concerns, but would be highly prized with the ones that need such operation.
  25. Plugging in for cold weather operation has always been a preferred practice. Tank heaters or block heaters have proved their worth for cold starts. The device lowers engine's emissions, improve the engine's efficiency, and provides for quick cabin heat. So, why hasn't the practice become popular? Modern car technology has improved so much the need is gone. Modern lubricates and engine design make the engine component the most durable section of the car, so the motivation to yet get more longevity is gone. Plugging in will be a negative option for most shoppers looking for the best solution to their day to day car transportation needs. Conversely, the mild hybrid should become popular due to low cost option that will maximize MPG.. But, most importantly, whenever the consumer fuels up they should be offered higher blend ethanol to save money and improve environment. That option will prove out to be the most powerful improvement for environment and will be as natural as shopping for the best deal. The improvement comes with no convenience penalty and actually save the consumer money.
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