UC Riverside

Center for Environmental Research and Technology (CE-CERT)

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Vehicles, Mobility and Pollution — Tying them Together

Southern California is known for both being environmentally conscious and for having the worst air pollution in the nation. At UC Riverside, the Bourns College of Engineering - Center for Environmental Research and Technology (CE-CERT), is working to solve the state’s continuing environmental challenges.

The center is a vital source of research into how pollution interacts with the atmosphere, and how vehicles and transportation systems can work more efficiently while doing minimal damage to the environment.

The Bio-Diesel Solution

Two Professors

Drs. Wayne Miller and Thomas Durbin

UC Riverside researchers Thomas Durbin and J. Wayne Miller, members of CE-CERT’s Emissions and Fuels Group, are principal investigators on a research project with the California Department of Transportation (CalTrans) to determine the feasibility of converting the 14,000 CalTrans vehicle fleet to biodiesel fuel. They received a grant of over $1.6 million from the California Air Resources Board (CARB) to fund the fuel research.

The program will start with a 20-vehicle pilot test. If the test is successful, the change-over could save the state up to 600,000 gallons of petroleum annually.

The project is just the latest for the Emissions and Fuels Group, which investigates emissions from various engine types in the lab and field, under both controlled and real-world conditions. The group’s leadership in emissions measurement research, as well as in unique technologies and novel methods, has attracted partnerships with not only California agencies, but also with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), engine manufacturers and commercial engine users.

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