Zero emissions liquid air engine undergoes tests at new R&D facility

UK liquid-nitrogen engine pioneer Dearman has begun full testing of its zero-emission engine technology at its new liquid air R&D facility.

Dearman engine
Dearman engine

Claimed to be the first dedicated liquid air engine facility of its kind, the Dearman Technology Centre, located near Croydon, houses a range of custom-built test cells, in which the firm’s technologies will undergo extended durability testing and new applications will be developed.

The firm’s technology is based on a new kind of engine, developed by founder Peter Dearman, which runs on liquid nitrogen

According to the company, the Centre will become a hub of liquid air engine design, engineering, test and development.

When fully operational it will enable the testing of four engines simultaneously, along with full system testing, supported by low-volume manufacturing and build capabilities.

Commenting on the new facility, Dearman’s Deputy Chief Executive, Michael Ayres, said:  “Having a bespoke facility means that we can accelerate our rate of development and testing, enabling us to bring zero-emission cold and power technologies to market even quicker.

Ayres added that having four test cells means that the company is able to work on several projects in parallel. “Already we are placed to commence work work on the high-efficiency auxiliary power unit for use on buses and heavy-duty vehicles next week,” he said.

Meanwhile, Dearman’s zero-emission transport refrigeration system is currently in extended on-vehicle testing at MIRA, and will be commencing commercial on-road trials later this year.

The company has recently been awarded funding from Innovate UK to develop its auxiliary power unit, and work on customising the transport refrigeration system for different vehicle types.

Dearman is one of a number of small technology firms working with the Proving Factory , an initiative set up to help bolster the UK’s automotive supply chain.