The catalytic converters that reduce nitrogen oxides and other harmful emissions help keep the air clean, but rely on rare and expensive minerals such as platinum and palladium, which increases the overall cost of vehicles. But an alternative, that does not rely on these expensive materials, offers better performance and at a lower cost.
Using a synthetic version of a material called mullite, researchers found that the pollution levels from diesel engines were up to 45% lower than those using conventional platinum catalysts. Although it is a synthetically created material, it is still less expensive than the rare minerals which are currently used.
One unanswered question is whether the same materials can also be usefully applied to conventional gasoline engines, to provide cleaner exhausts from those vehicles at a lower cost, as well.
via: R&D Mag