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India receives its first ethanol-powered, flex fuel-capable hybrid vehicle

Flex-fuel vehicles are an environmentally friendly option because they use ethanol, which is manufactured sustainably.

In New Delhi: Toyota has started a first-of-its-kind pilot project for a flex fuel-strong hybrid electric vehicle (FFV-SHEV) in India as the globe debates what should be the next alternative energy to power automobiles. The brand-new car can run on only ethanol.

A flex-fuel engine and an electric drivetrain are features of an FFV-SHEV. This configuration increases both the amount of ethanol used and the fuel economy because it can operate in its EV mode for a significant amount of time while the engine is off.

This appears to be addressing the frequently raised issue of locating a long-term alternate fuel source for autos.

Even though India has been implementing programmes in practically all other alternative energy technologies, lowering vehicle emissions has recently emerged as one of the nation’s most pressing goals. Thus, the promotion of hydrogen and electric vehicles has come into emphasis.

Nitin Gadkari, an Indian minister, unveiled Toyota’s pioneering flex fuel-capable hybrid electric car pilot project (FFV-SHEV). The brand-new car can run on only ethanol.

The most widely used alternative biofuel and a material that is produced locally is ethanol, which has found its way into people’s petrol tanks. Environmentally friendly and compliant with more stringent emission standards.

Flex-fuel, also known as flexible fuel, is an alternative, environmentally friendly fuel that can be used to reduce both pollution and growing fuel prices.

These blends of ordinary gasoline and methanol/ethanol are regarded as alternative fuels. The flex-fuel combination is stored in a single fuel tank and used by the engine as a blended fuel, in contrast to CNG fuel systems that store gasoline and CNG in separate tanks and use them separately.

Flex fuel engines are already well-liked in several countries, including China, the United States, the European Union, and Brazil.

Following the United States, Brazil, the European Union, and China, India is the fifth-largest producer of ethanol.

Over 21 million flex-fuel vehicles were on the road in the United States as of 2018, according to IHS Markit, although Brazil is the biggest market and a leader in this industry. The primary differences between standard petrol-only automobiles and flex-fuel vehicles are an ethanol-compatible fuel system and a unique powertrain calibration.

Although the proportion of ethanol to gasoline in flex fuels can be changed, the most often used flex fuel uses 85% ethanol and 15% petrol. Ethanol is not a byproduct of crude oil, unlike gasoline. It is actually a complicated derivative of the biomass left over from agricultural feedstocks including corn, sugarcane, hemp (bhang), potato, and rice, among many other things.

Sugarcane juice and molasses, the dark, viscous byproduct of sugarcane processing, are the two sources of ethanol. Due to the abundance of these agricultural goods in India, the country’s government has made a concentrated effort to promote ethanol as an alternative fuel source.

Due to ethanol’s ability to burn cleaner than gasoline, flex-fuel vehicles simply emit fewer harmful gases into the atmosphere. Flex-fuel engines are created using cutting-edge technology, which also involves the use of electronic sensors. The vehicle can now identify the fuel blend and make any necessary modifications thanks to these developments.

Flex-fuel vehicles are an environmentally friendly option because they use ethanol, which is manufactured sustainably.

According to an article in Indian Express, flex-fuel cars feature a single fuel system and the most of their parts are identical to those of a typical petrol-only car. To adapt to the unique chemical characteristics and energy content of ethanol or methanol, several specialised ethanol-compatible components, such as adjustments to the fuel pump and fuel injection system, are necessary. Additionally, the ECM has been adjusted to account for the greater oxygen concentration of ethanol.

The most significant advantage is that using ethanol in blends significantly reduces dangerous emissions including carbon monoxide, sulphur, carbon and nitrogen oxides. Blending will also obviously assist reduce the amount of oil that is imported to fuel automobiles.

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