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ORNL Assists Licensee Da Vinci Emissions Services with New Product Testing


ORNL and Da Vinci team members look over the new Da Vinci DAFIOTM Fuel in Oil analysis system. The underlying technology was developed by ORNL scientists Jim Parks and Bill Partridge of the Fuels, Engines, and Emissions Research Group in ORNL's Energy and Transportation Science Division. From left to right: Bill Partridge (ORNL), Martin McIntosh(Da Vinci), Kent Froeland (Da Vinci), and Jim Parks (ORNL).

Just 24 months after licensing ORNL technology for determining the amount of fuel dilution in engine oil, Da Vinci Emissions Services CEO Kent Froelund and his colleagues brought their first generation commercial product back to ORNL for final validation. In addition to being an important milestone in Da Vinci’s commercial development of this technology, this test session in late September was also the first use of ORNL’s new Technology Assistance Program (TAP).

The Da Vinci Fuel-In-Oil (DAFIOTM) measurements system is based on technology developed by Jim Parks and Bill Partridge of the Fuels, Engines, and Emissions Research Group in ORNL’s Energy and Transportation Science Division and uses fluorescence spectroscopy to measure the amount of fuel leaking into the engine’s oil reserve. The mixing occurs as fuel-efficient engines are operated in advanced combustion modes to meet increasingly lower emissions regulations, resulting in thinner oil, higher engine wear, and potentially engine failure. The DAFIOTM is marketed to engine testing labs to accelerate engine evaluations and reduce design cycle times.

Upon completion of the ORNL tests, Da Vinci plans to begin the DAFIO commercial launch with appearances at the upcoming conferences including the 2011 ASME ICE Conference in Morgantown, WV, the 2011 DEER Conference in Detroit, MI, and the 2011 Automotive Testing Expo in Novi, MI.

The TAP is designed specifically for this type of effort, where ORNL’s unique expertise and facilities can be leveraged to accelerate the deployment of licensed technologies. The program is available to small business licensees of ORNL technologies who would like to leverage ORNL’s expertise and capabilities to accelerate the commercialization of licensed technologies. The Technology Assistance Program (TAP) provides funds for ORNL S&T staff members to consult with licensees, performing work on the company’s behalf that may include such activities as information exchange, training in the use of licensed technologies, assistance resolving technical problems associated with licensed technology, analysis of data, production of sample materials for evaluation, preparation of documentation to facilitate adoption of a technology, product testing and other consulting.

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