British startup gets cash injection for zero-emission project

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UK-based engineering company Dearman has announced it has received investment that it says will enable it to bring the first application of its clean cold and power technology to market.

Park Vale Capital has invested US$23.5m, bringing Dearman’s total funds raised for 2015 to US$28.5m, which means that the company will be able to accomplish international commercial deployment of its new clean fuel motor as well as investing in further R&D.

Dearman chief executive Toby Peters said, “To have [a]partnership of this scale, from a company as respected as Park Vale, is a recognition of the potential of our technology, the quality of our team and the rapid progress we have made to date.

“We have a vision to utilize innovative clean cold and power technology to address global environmental challenges, while delivering economic returns for our shareholders and growth in the communities where we operate.”

Dearman’s engine concept does away with fossil fuels in favour of eco-friendly liquid nitrogen, pumping heat exchange fluid (a mix of water and glycol) into the engine until the cylinder is almost full.

Cryogenic nitrogen is then added, and when it comes into contact with the heat exchange fluid, it begins to expand. Heat from the exchange fluid is then absorbed by the expanding gas, causing near-isothermal expansion. The piston is forced down, the exhaust valve opens, and a mixture of gas and heat exchange fluid is exhausted from the engine.

Finally, the heat exchange fluid is reclaimed, reheated and reused, and the nitrogen or air is released back into the atmosphere.

The first application of the technology is a zero-emission transport refrigeration unit, which the company says offers a “commercially attractive and operationally superior alternative to the polluting diesel powered units that keep refrigerated cargo cool on the road today”.

Dearman says there is a rapidly growing market for its technology and aims to begin trials of its zero-emission refrigeration unit early in 2016.

Subsequent applications of Dearman technology, already under development, include an auxiliary cold and power unit for buses and HGVs, a back-up cold and power system for the built environment, and a waste heat hybrid drive system for trucks and buses.

January 11, 2016

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Dean has been with UKi Media & Events for over a decade, having previously cut his journalistic teeth writing and editing for various automotive and engineering titles. He combines extensive knowledge of all things automotive with a passion for driving, and experience testing countless new vehicles, engines and technologies around the world. As well as his role as editor-in-chief across a range of UKi's media titles, he is also co-chair of the judging panel of the International Engine of the Year Awards.

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