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ABSTRACT

Cryogens are effective thermal storage media which, when used for automotive purposes, offer significant advantages over current and proposed electrochemical battery technologies, both in performance and economy. An automotive propulsion concept is presented which utilizes liquid nitrogen as the working fluid for an open Rankine cycle. The principle of operation is like that of a steam engine, except there is no combustion involved. Liquid nitrogen is pressurized and then vaporized in a heat exchanger by the ambient temperature of the surrounding air. The resulting high pressure nitrogen gas is fed to the engine converting pressure into mechanical power. The only exhaust is nitrogen. The usage of cryogenic fuels has significant advantage over other fuel. Also, factors such as production and storage of nitrogen and pollutants in the exhaust give advantage for the cryogenic fuels.

CONTENTS

Chapter 1
1.1 Introduction5 1.2 History6 1.3 Description.7

Chapter 2
2.1 Factors8 2.2 Working12

Chapter 3
3.1 Advantages....14 3.2 Disadvantages....15

References

CHAPTER 1
1.1 INTRODUCTION The importance of cars in the present world is increasing day by day. There are various factors that influence the choice of the car. These include performance, fuel, pollution etc. As the prices for fuels are increasing and the availability is decreasing we have to go for alternative choice. Here an automotive propulsion concept is presented which utilizes liquid nitrogen as the working fluid for an open Rankine cycle. When the only heat input to the engine is supplied by ambient heat exchangers, an automobile can readily be propelled while satisfying stringent tailpipe emission standards. Nitrogen propulsive systems can provide automotive ranges of nearly 400 kilometers in the zero emission modes, with lower operating costs than those of the electric vehicles currently being considered for mass production. In geographical regions that allow ultra low emission vehicles, the range and performance of the liquid nitrogen automobile can be significantly extended by the addition of a small efficient burner. Some of the advantages of a transportation infrastructure based on liquid nitrogen are that recharging the energy storage system only requires minutes and there are minimal environmental hazards associated with the manufacture and utilization of the cryogenic "fuel". The basic idea of nitrogen propulsion system is to utilize the atmosphere as the heat source. This is in contrast to the typical heat engine where the atmosphere is used as the heat sink. 1.2 HISTORY The LN2000 is an operating proof-of-concept test vehicle, a converted 1984 GrummanOlson Kubvan mail delivery van. Applying LN2 as a portable thermal storage medium to propel both commuter and fleet vehicles appears to be an attractive means to meeting the ZEV regulations soon to be implemented. Pressurizing the working fluid while it is at cryogenic temperatures, heating it up with ambient air, and expanding it in reciprocating engines is a straightforward approach for powering pollution free vehicles. Ambient heat exchangers that will not suffer extreme icing will have to be developed to enable wide utility of this propulsion system. Since the expansion engine operates at sub-ambient temperatures, the potential for attaining quasi-isothermal operation appears promising. The engine, a radial five-cylinder 15-hp air motor, drives the front wheels through a five-speed manual Volkswagen transmission. The liquid nitrogen is stored in a thermos-like stainless steel tank. At present the tank is pressurized with gaseous nitrogen to develop system pressure but a cryogenic liquid pump will be used for this purpose in the future. A preheater, called an economizer, uses leftover heat in the engine's exhaust to preheat the liquid nitrogen before it enters the heat exchanger. The specific energy densities of LN2 are 54 and 87 Wh/kg-LN2 for the adiabatic and isothermal expansion processes, respectively, and the corresponding amounts of cryogen to provide a 300 km driving range would be 450 kg and 280 kg. Many details of the application of LN2 thermal storage to ground transportation remain to be investigated; however, to date no fundamental technological hurdles have yet been discovered that might stand in the way of fully realizing the potential offered by this revolutionary propulsion concept. 1.3 DESCRIPTION

Liquid nitrogen is generated by cryogenic or Sterling engine coolers that liquefy the main component of air, nitrogen (N2). The cooler can be powered by electricity or through direct mechanical work from hydro or wind turbines. Liquid nitrogen is distributed and stored in insulated containers. The insulation reduces heat flow into the stored nitrogen; this is necessary because heat from the surrounding environment boils the liquid, which then transitions to a gaseous state. Reducing inflowing heat reduces the loss of liquid nitrogen in storage. The requirements of storage prevent the use of pipelines as a means of transport. Since long-distance pipelines would be costly due to the insulation requirements, it would be costly to use distant energy sources for production of liquid nitrogen. Petroleum reserves are typically a vast distance from consumption but can be transferred at ambient temperatures. Liquid nitrogen consumption is in essence production in reverse. The Sterling engine or cryogenic heat engine offers a way to power vehicles and a means to generate electricity. Liquid nitrogen can also serve as a direct coolant for refrigerators, electrical equipment and air conditioning units. The consumption of liquid nitrogen is in effect boiling and returning the nitrogen to the atmosphere.

CHAPTER 2

2.1 FACTORS EFFECTING CRYOCARS COST OF PRODUCTION Liquid nitrogen production is an energy-intensive process. Currently practical refrigeration plants producing a few tons/day of liquid nitrogen operate at about 50% of Carnot efficiency. ENERGY DENSITY OF LIQUID NITROGEN Any process that relies on a phase-change of a substance will have much lower energy densities than processes involving a chemical reaction in a substance, which in turn have lower energy densities than nuclear reactions. Liquid nitrogen as an energy store has a low energy density. Liquid hydrocarbon fuels by comparison have a high energy density. A high energy density makes the logistics of transport and storage more convenient. Convenience is an important factor in consumer acceptance. The convenient storage of petroleum fuels combined with its low cost has led to an unrivaled success. In addition, a petroleum fuel is a primary energy source, not just an energy storage and transport medium. The energy density derived from nitrogen's isobaric heat of vaporization and specific heat in gaseous state that can be realized from liquid nitrogen at atmospheric pressure and zero degrees Celsius ambient temperature is about 97 watt-hours per kilogram (W-hr/kg). This compares with about 3,000 W-hr/kg for a gasoline combustion engine running at 28% thermal efficiency, 30 times the density of liquid nitrogen used at the Carnot efficiency. For an isothermal expansion engine to have a range comparable to an internal combustion engine, an 350-litre (92 US gal) insulated onboard storage vessel is required [2]. A practical volume, but a noticeable increase over the typical 50-litre (13 US gal) gasoline tank. The addition of more complex power cycles would reduce this requirement and help enable frost free operation. However, no commercially practical instances of liquid nitrogen use for vehicle propulsion exist. FROST FORMATION Unlike internal combustion engines, using a cryogenic working fluid requires heat exchangers to warm and cool the working fluid. In a humid environment, frost formation will prevent heat flow and thus represents an engineering challenge. To prevent frost build up, multiple working fluids can be used. This adds topping cycles to ensure the heat exchanger does not fall below freezing. Additional heat exchangers, weight, complexity, efficiency loss, and expense, would be required to enable frost free operation.

SAFETY However efficient the insulation on the nitrogen fuel tank, there will inevitably be losses by evaporation to the atmosphere. If a vehicle is stored in a poorly ventilated space, there is some risk that leaking nitrogen could reduce the oxygen concentration in the air and cause asphyxiation.
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Since nitrogen is a colorless and odourless gas that already makes up 78 % of air, such a change would be difficult to detect. Cryogenic liquids are hazardous if spilled. Liquid nitrogen can cause frostbite and can make some materials extremely brittle. As liquid N2 is colder than 90.2K, oxygen from the atmosphere can condense. Liquid oxygen can spontaneously and violently react with organic chemicals, including petroleum products like asphalt Since the liquid to gas expansion ratio of this substance is 1:694, a tremendous amount of force can be generated if liquid nitrogen is rapidly vaporized. In an incident in 2006 at Texas A&M University, the pressure-relief devices of a tank of liquid nitrogen were sealed with brass plugs. As a result, the tank failed catastrophically, and exploded.

TANKS The tanks must be designed to safety standards appropriate for a pressure vessel, such as ISO 11439. The storage tank may be made of: Steel, Aluminium, Carbon fiber, Kevlar, Other materials or combinations of the above. The fiber materials are considerably lighter than metals but generally more expensive. Metal tanks can withstand a large number of pressure cycles, but must be checked for corrosion periodically.

EMISSION OUTPUT Like other non-combustion energy storage technologies, a liquid nitrogen vehicle displaces the emission source from the vehicle's tail pipe to the central electrical generating plant. Where emissions-free sources are available, net production of pollutants can be reduced.Emission control measures at a central generating plant may be more effective and less costly than treating the emissions of widely dispersed vehicles. GAS FLOW DIAGRAM FOR NITROGEN POWERED CAR

2.2 WORKING The more cars are driven, the cleaner the air becomes. Sound crazy? It's possible by using a C-H ("cryogenic heat") engine to power cars. A C-H engine is a radically new energy concept being investigated by Drs. Carlos A. Ordonez, Mitty C. Plummer, and Richard F. Reidy at the University of North Texas with support from the Texas Advanced Technology Program. The most intriguing aspect of the concept is that the fuel used by a C-H engine to power a vehicle can be either liquefied air or liquid nitrogen. Liquid nitrogen is produced by taking nitrogen gas from the atmosphere and cooling and compressing it. Because air consists of 78% nitrogen gas, liquid nitrogen have similar properties. In order to run a C-H engine using liquid nitrogen, liquid nitrogen is heated and expanded in much the same way that water is heated and expanded when used to run a steam engine. However, an important difference is that pollution-emitting combustion is not necessary for the heating process. Instead, heat already existing in the atmosphere is used. As a result, the exhaust consists solely of pure, clean, breathable air. As an environmental benefit, liquid nitrogen production systems remove undesirable airborne pollutants from the air. As a result, the more those cars powered by C-H engines are driven, the cleaner the air becomes.

Schematic of Liquid Nitrogen Car LN2000

Liquid Nitrogen Propulsion Cycle Diagram

In the LN2000 liquid nitrogen powered concept car, being developed at the University of Washington, the liquid fuel is let out of a pressurized tank, preheated by an economizer which takes heat from the exhaust before it quickly vaporizes, expanding rapidly in an endothermic reaction. This expanding gas is converted into energy that moves the wheels of the converted mail truck by a 15 hp radial air motor. The main problem that developers of N2 powered cars had to overcome was that when the nitrogen was expanding, it absorbed so much heat, that the pipes that carried the gas would freeze up. This problem has been solved in the LN2000 by preheating the liquid nitrogen in such a way that ice is less likely to form and insulate the pipes and nitrogen from the ambient heat.

CHAPTER 3
3.1 ADVANTAGES Liquid nitrogen vehicles are comparable in many ways to electric vehicles, but use liquid nitrogen to store the energy instead of batteries. Their potential advantages over other vehicles include: Much like electrical vehicles, liquid nitrogen vehicles would ultimately be powered through the electrical grid. Which makes it easier to focus on reducing pollution from one source, as opposed to the millions of vehicles on the road? Transportation of the fuel would not be required due to drawing power off the electrical grid. This presents significant cost benefits. Pollution created during fuel transportation would be eliminated. Lower maintenance costs Liquid nitrogen tanks can be disposed of or recycled with less pollution than batteries. Liquid nitrogen vehicles are unconstrained by the degradation problems associated with current battery systems.

The tank may be able to be refilled more often and in less time than batteries can be recharged, with re-fueling rates comparable to liquid fuels.

3.2 DISADVANTAGES

The principal disadvantage is the inefficient use of primary energy. Energy is used to liquify nitrogen, which in turn provides the energy to run the motor. Any conversion of energy between forms results in loss. For liquid nitrogen cars, energy is lost when electrical energy is converted to liquid nitrogen.

Liquid nitrogen is not yet available in public refueling stations.

REFERENCE
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J. Franz, C. A. Ordonez, A. Carlos, Cryogenic Heat Engines Made Using Electro caloric Capacitors, American Physical Society, Texas Section Fall Meeting, October 46, 2001 Fort Worth, Texas Meeting ID: TSF01, abstract #EC.009, 10/2001. C. Knowlen, A.T. Mattick, A.P. Bruckner and A. Hertzberg, "High Efficiency Conversion Systems for Liquid Nitrogen Automobiles", Society of Automotive Engineers Inc, 1988. Werley, Barry L. (Edtr.) (1991). "Fire Hazards in Oxygen Systems". ASTM Technical Professional training. Philadelphia: ASTM International Subcommittee G-4.05. Brent S. Mattox. "Investigative Report on Chemistry 301A Cylinder Explosion" (reprint). Texas A&M University. http://ucih.ucdavis.edu/docs/chemistry_301a.pdf. Gas cylinders -- High pressure cylinders for the on-board storage of natural gas as a fuel for automotive vehicles

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