Imperial College London

Imperial engineers working on technology to measure car emissions in real time


Air.Car app in use

Researchers from Civil and Mechanical Engineering are working on a project that could change the way car emissions are taxed.

The initiative is funded through Innovate UK and led by Tantalum, a company that develops smart devices for monitoring vehicle emissions in real time. Engineers from Imperial College London are providing emission models and measurements for the project using the College's unique facilities.

Imperial’s Civil Engineering team (Marc Stettler, Panagiotis Angeloudis, Mino Woo and Clémence Le Cornec) are developing computer models to assess real-time NOx emissions from cars, while Yannis Hardalupas and Dimitris Touloupis from Mechanical Engineering are working on measuring emissions from Diesel engines for model evaluation.

The new technology could be used to implement varying road charges based on estimations of actual emissions instead of the current flat-rate tax. The current focus of the project are diesel cars, but petrol vehicles can also be monitored.

Test engine facilities in the Department of Mechanical Engineering
Test engine facilities in the Department of Mechanical Engineering

Dr Marc Stettler, who leads the Imperial team, talked about the project in a recent episode of BBC Click, which aired on 3 February. The interview was filmed in the diesel engine test cell belonging to the Department of Mechanical Engineering.

The facilities used for the project have the ability to simulate engine conditions for current and future Diesel cars, and to measure the exhaust emissions, including Carbon Dioxide, Nitrogen Oxide and particulate emissions.


Nadia Barbu

Nadia Barbu
Department of Mechanical Engineering

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