Wednesday, October 13, 2010

US Patent 7810314 - Vehicle emission control with carbon nanosensor

Soot sensors are include in automotive emission control systems to determine the regeneration of filters. Aluminum oxide ceramics have commonly been employed as the material for these sensors but this patent from Ford Global teaches that carbon nanomaterials can provide improved sensitivity and response time. Claim 1 reads:  

1. In a vehicle comprising a diesel engine and an emissions control system comprising a diesel particulate filter, a method for operating the diesel engine and emission control system, the method comprising:

correlating a measured property associated with a carbon nanostructure layer to an amount of particulate matter from an exhaust stream of the engine, wherein the carbon nanostructure includes a plurality of carbon nanostructures; and

adjusting engine operation based on the amount of particulate matter.