Researchers explore low carbon technologies in performance cars

Drayson Racing Lola Coupe with Judd V10 Power
Drayson Racing and Aston University have announced a collaboration to develop and demonstrate low carbon automotive technologies. The partnership will investigate 'second generation' biofuels produced from waste biomass such as straw, wood and sewage sludge to create high performance cars with reduced CO2 emissions.

The collaboration is also aimed at improving the stability and reliability of these biofuels, enhancing the ability of high performance engines to optimise performance and developing materials for use in fuel pumps which are capable of surviving a highly aggressive biofuel environment.

"Reducing vehicle emissions is one of the critical challenges of the next 20 years," said Lord Drayson, former UK Minister for Science and Innovation and managing partner of Drayson Racing. "Road transport accounts for 25 to 35% of CO2 emissions in developed countries and the major source of these emissions is private cars. We are keen to apply what we have learnt on the track to novel products that will improve the performance of future vehicles while reducing their carbon impact."

Lord Drayson formed Drayson Racing in 2009 to pioneer the development of green technologies and remove reliance on fossil fuels in motor racing. Last year, it achieved the first ever international pole and win for a bioethanol fuelled race car in the American Le Mans Series endurance race at Road America. The Flex-Fuel race car, capable of more than 200mph, produced approximately 40% less carbon impact than the petrol fuelled cars that it beat.

Laura Hopperton

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