“You Cannot Violate the Laws of Physics”

Why Hydrogen Assist by Means of On-Board Electrolysis Works

There are many different opinions about Hydrogen on demand systems.  Some say they “Can’t work” or that it violates the first law of thermodynamics which states that “you can’t get something from nothing” – conservation of energy.

The BoostBox H2 System is different than what’s been done in the past.  We don’t make grandiose claims of the achieved savings, but instead state, from field and 3rd party testing that you will usually experience between 5-10% savings in fuel consumption, depending on driving habits and displacement.  Emission reductions range from 10-35% for greenhouse gasses (CO, CO2, NOx) and 65% or more for particulates.

Let’s dispel the myths around Hydrogen On-Demand (HOD) Systems with some facts:

  1.  The BoostBox H2 produces, at peak power, 6L/m of gasses, 4L/m of hydrogen and 2 of oxygen. It should be noted that ambient air contains approximately 21% oxygen, the balance being nitrogen (78%) and argon (1%).
  1.  Nascent (atomic) Hydrogen (H2) and Oxygen (O2) are produced through the electrolysis of very pure distilled water. The hydrogen and oxygen are completely separated and not allowed to mix to form Browns gas (HHO).
  1.  Our system draws a max of 65A on a 12VDC diesel engine, so our power consumption for electrolysis is 780 Watts. One Horsepower = 745.7 Watts so our system requires 1.05 HP to function at its maximum output.  The typical Diesel engine application for the BoostBox H2 is between 150-450HP, so we would use from 0.7% down to 0.23% of the available horsepower.
  1.  The comment that we are “getting something for free” or “something from nothing” is not a valid comment. We ARE adding a catalyst to the system – Hydrogen.  Just like the addition diesel fuel, engines require external fuels to function.  We use a very small percentage of the available energy from the engine to split the molecular bonds creating the nascent hydrogen and oxygen.  This is an exothermic reaction and produces heat and non-processed water.  Our system is around 72% efficient.
  1.  It takes very little energy to ignite hydrogen-air mixtures. It requires less than one-tenth the energy to ignite hydrogen-air as it does to ignite diesel-air mixtures. (Enrico Conte, et.al. – ETH Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Zurich)
  1.  Engine efficiency is measured as the maximum temperature less the minimum temperature divided by the minimum temp. In other words, if an engine combusts at a higher temperature and exhausts at a lower temperature, it’s more efficient.  (Enrico Conte, et.al. – ETH Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Zurich)
  1.  Under little to no pressure, the flame speed of hydrogen in oxygen is ~390 cm/s, while petroleum in oxygen is ~30 cm/s. This 10x plus increased flame speed allows a chain reaction to be initiated between the nascent hydrogen atoms and the existing diesel to simultaneous ignite all of the existing fuel in the chamber.  (Combustion Science and Technology:  Fast Flame Propagation in Hydrogen/Oxygen Mixture – Aoyama Gakuin University, Japan)
  1.  Evidence suggests the presence of nascent hydrogen and oxygen decreases the burn time of the entire air/fuel mix by a factor of ten (10). If ignition typically occurs at around -4 degrees rotation, the entire burn would be complete at around 13 degrees.  The burn would have been completed within less than 10% of its complete 180 degree stroke cycle.
  1.  Due to the very small percentage of hydrogen in the air mix, the hydrogen produced from the BoostBox H2 system is not intended to replace/displace the fuel in the engine but is designed to act as a catalyst to increase the burn rate and efficiency of the combustion cycle.
  1.  What is a catalyst? Catalysts speed up a chemical reaction by lowering the amount of energy you need to get one going…. In most cases, you need just a tiny amount of catalyst to make a difference…. At its heart, a catalyst is a way to save energy. (Louise Lerner – Argonne National Laboratory, 2011)

Based on the above facts:

Normally, fuel is ignited several degrees before the beginning of the combustion/power stroke and is still burning when the piston reaches the bottom of the power stoke.  The remaining, unburnt fuel is jettisoned through the exhaust system (ETH Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Zurich) in the form of hydrocarbon emissions.

The injection of the higher flame rate hydrogen acts as a combustion catalyst, to more completely combust the available diesel fuel faster, hotter and earlier in the power stroke.  What this translates into is multi-fold:

  • When you burn the available fuel faster at the top of the power stroke, you generate more heat in less time. More heat in less time means more pressure due to the Law of Ideal Gasses:  PV = nRT where P is pressure, V is volume, nR are constants and T is temperature.  If the temperature rapidly increases, either the pressure, or volume must increase to compensate.  Volume (mechanical piston stroke), cannot compensate for the increased temperature as fast as the pressure.  Increased pressure pushes harder on the piston head, therefore there’s an increase in TORQUE, or work executed by the piston.  An increase (shift) in the TORQUE curve means you get the same work out of the engine with less RPM.  Therefore, to get the same work, you use less RPM, which means less fuel.  Additionally with each gallon of diesel not combusted, you do not release 22.4 pounds of CO2 into the atmosphere (U.S. Environmental Protection Agency)
  • With the HIGHER COMBUSTION temperature, you will more completely consume the hydrocarbons in the fuel, reducing overall hydrocarbon emissions (particulates).
  • It is essential to have time and high temperatures to form NOx gasses. With the FASTER COMBUSTION process, the essential element of time is reduced.  The extreme combustion temperatures are of such short duration that through the remainder of the power stroke and the entire exhaust stroke the engine, will, on average, be much cooler.  This means less NOx gasses.
  • With a COOLER ENGINE, the definition of engine efficiency can be evoked: max temp minus min divided by min temp.  Therefore with a very high combustion temperature for a very short period leading to a cooler exhaust, the efficiency of the whole combustion process is increased.

The conclusions above are supported by a number of very reputable bodies starting with NASA and JPL in the early years, and dozens of studies since.  Below is just a small sample of noted works:

  • “The JPL Concept has unquestionably demonstrated that the addition of small quantities of gaseous hydrogen to the primary gasoline significantly reduces CO and NOx exhaust emissions while improving engine thermal efficiency” – California Institute of Technology, Jet Propulsion Lab, Pasadena
  • “The additional of some hydrogen to the methane, speeds up the rates of initiation and subsequent propagation of flames over the whole combustible mixture range, including very fast flowing mixture, This enhancement of flame initiation and subsequent flame propagation, reduces the ignition delay and combustion period in both spark ignition and compression ignition engines should lead to noticeable improvements in the combustion process and performance” – G.A. Karim, University of Calgary
  • “As hydrogen has a flame spread rate over 10 times faster than that of diesel, when it is injected into the combustion sequence, it ignites the fuel from all sides as opposed to the point of initial ignition. This increases the flame speed of combustion and extracts more energy from the fuel” – ETH Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Zurich
  • “Mixing hydrogen with hydrocarbon fuels provides combustion stimulation by increasing the rate of the molecular-cracking processes in which large hydrocarbons are broken into smaller fragments. Expediting production of smaller molecular fragments is beneficial in increasing the surface-to-volume ration and consequent exposure to oxygen for completion of the combustion process.  Relatively small amount of hydrogen can dramatically increase torque and reduce emissions of atmospheric pollutants” – American Hydrogen Association Newsletter
  • “When the engine runs with hydrogen addition heat utilization efficiency improvement was observed. The hydrogen addition influences the power improvement not only quantitatively but qualitatively by the means of combustion improvement” – Fisita World Automotive Congress, Barcelona
  • “Guidelines for Use of Hydrogen Fuel in Commercial Vehicles” – U.S. Department of Transportation, Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration
  • “Average Carbon Dioxide Emissions Resulting from Gasoline and Diesel Fuel” – U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Transportation and Air Quality
  • Peer Reviewed Paper: “Fuel Economy Improvement by On Board Electrolytic Hydrogen Production” – Dulger/Ozcelik
  • Peer Reviewed Paper: “Effect of H2/O2 Addition in Increasing the Thermal Efficiency of a Diesel Engine” – Sustainable Energy Centre, University of South Australia
  • Peer Reviewed Paper: “Hydrogen Aspiration in a Direction Injection Type Diesel Engine – Its Effects on Smoke and Other Engine Performance Parameters” – University of Michigan – Dearborn
  • Peer Reviewed Paper: “Investigation of the Influence of Hydrogen Used in Internal Combustion Engines on Exhaust Emission” – Journal of Maintenance and Reliability 2013
  • 3rd Party Field Testing: “SAE J1321 Type II Fuel Consumption Test for Partial Hydrogen Injection product” – Program for Advanced Vehicle Evaluation, Auburn University
  • 3rd Party Field Testing: “Emissions Evaluation of Hydrogen on Demand “BoostBox” system” – Damon Atkinson – Dixie State University, St. George UT
  • US Patented: #8186315
  • EU Patent pending: WO 2014/007802 A1
  • Tested to SAE J1455: Environmental Practices for Electronic Equipment Design
  • Temperature cycled from -40C to +50C while shaking 3-4 on 3 axis for 3 days
  • Tested to MIL-STD-810 method 516.5 for Shock
  • 40g shock on 6 axis
  • RoHS-II compliant for worldwide shipment
  • E-Tick Certified (industrial version of CE Mark) to EU Regulation 10 for automotive products
  • All interior components are designed to SAE (Society of Automotive Engineering) standards
  • Custom electronics control module (ECM) regulates and monitors all functions of the system
  • Assembled to ISO 9000 quality standard at $300M Contract Manufacturer
  • EMI/EMC certified by Testing house TÜV SÜD America

Email:  sales@BoostBoxH2.com

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