Ricardo joins JLR and APC’s ‘Latitude’ project

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The Latitude project is researching advanced boosting technology, integrated with an engine combustion system, incorporating leading edge fuel injection equipment and controls, for application in future Jaguar Land Rover products. Allied to an innovative thermally optimized and lightweight design of engine structure – the focus of Ricardo’s involvement in Latitude – the project aims to deliver over 10 percent fuel economy and CO2 emissions improvement, compared with current production vehicles.

The project is supported and part-funded by UK Government through the Advanced Propulsion Centre – with balancing contributions by the participating companies in the project – and will also improve the UK’s development and production capabilities of low-CO2 internal combustion engine technology.

Ricardo is taking overall responsibility for the structural design of two versions of the Latitude engine, based upon Jaguar Land Rover’s Ingenium family: a ‘High Performance’ unit, and a ‘Lower Power’ version aimed at providing an even greater level of fuel efficiency. Focusing on technologies with a short lead time to production readiness, Ricardo will explore aspects of engine design including reduction of overall mass, the lubrication system and insulation. The Low Power variant will have reduced peak cylinder pressure and will thus be able to benefit from an aggressive review of mass reduction for reciprocating components and the main structure. The latest optimization tools from GRM will allow weight, structural optimization and NVH to be combined by Ricardo with considerations of thermal management and friction. This will enable faster engine warm-up and through reduced thermal inertia, with slower cool-down achieved through encapsulation. These innovations will enable the engine to achieve its desired operating temperature more quickly which, together with the reduced engine mass, will contribute towards improving fuel economy and lowering CO2 emissions.

As with all aspects of the Latitude project, the innovations that Ricardo will apply to the engine structural design, will have been chosen to meet the challenges of providing the best possible fuel economy with improved refinement, while also achieving a competitive target piece cost-to-benefit ratio.

“The Ricardo engineering team is enthusiastic to be working in collaboration with Jaguar Land Rover, BorgWarner, Robert Bosch and GRM Consulting on this important project,” commented Andy Morris, Latitude project leader for Ricardo. “Latitude is an important initiative in pushing forward engine innovation and consolidating the UK supply chain, and our contribution to it will, I believe, help to improve the state of the art in lightweight, high quality and high performance engine design.”

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About Author

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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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