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Oxygen Enriching Membranes for Advanced Marine Internal Combustion Engines

Award Information

Department of Defense
Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
1995 / SBIR
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Compact Membrane Systems, Inc.
335 Water Street Newport, DE 19804-2410
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Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Phase 2
Fiscal Year: 1995
Title: Oxygen Enriching Membranes for Advanced Marine Internal Combustion Engines
Agency / Branch: DOD / DARPA
Contract: N/A
Award Amount: $370,000.00


Computer and engine studies demonstrated a 100% increase in diesel engine power with the use of 31% oxygen enriched air (OEA) versus standard 21% oxygen air. Additional benefits from OEA include: (1) improved fuel efficiency, (2) compatible with lower grade (volatility) fuels, (3) reduced CO and hydrocarbon emissions, (4) enhanced lean burn capability, (5) smoother less noisy operation, (6) better and cleaner cold starts, and (7) reduced particulate emissions. The major limitation in using OEA for enhanced (diesel) engine performance is no compact OEA supply system exists today. Our high oxygen permeability perfluoropolymer membrances dramatically improve oxygen flux capability and will supply compact OEA membrane systems to support enhanced (diesel) engine performance. Engineering studies indicate our perflouromembrane system productivity is 30 times better than existing competition and membrane devices smaller than 0.25 cubic feet will supply all OEA (diesel) engine needs at full throttle. Phase I focuses on proof of proudct concept by developing the needed thin film composite membrane structure to demonstrate high flux. Phase II will focus on developing expanded area prototype membrane modules and running both actual engine tests and associated computer modeling studies. Anticipated Benefits: This project introduces compact OEA membranes for improved power, fuel efficiency and pollution control of engines. Although engines are our focus, other applications will follow. These include (1) OEA for health care, (2) OEA for improved burner efficiency, (3) VOC abatement, (4) nitrogen enriching air for inerting operations and (5) industrial oxygen and nitrogen uses.

Principal Investigator:

Stuart Nemser

Business Contact:

Small Business Information at Submission:

Compact Membrane Systems,
325 Hampton Road Wilmington, DE 19803

Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No