|Demand regulated fuel pump with integrated electronic reduces fuel consumption. Click to enlarge.|
Continental will begin series production of its demand-regulated fuel pump technology with integrated electronics. From 2013, a major European vehicle manufacturer will be installing this technology, which helps reduce both fuel consumption and CO2 emissions, in its models.
The new pump generation is controlled by an electronic control unit, housed inside the flange of the supply module. Because the pump will only supply the engine with as much fuel—whether gasoline or diesel—as its operating status requires at any given moment, much of the electrical energy usually needed can be saved. Intelligent control saves between 60 and 70% of electrical energy compared with traditional constant fuel supply systems. In a 1.8-liter engine, this can mean a CO2 saving of 1.5 to 2 grams per kilometer, a notable contribution when one considers the strict limits where every gram counts and expensive tax penalties can be imposed.
By introducing this product to the market, the Fuel Supply Business Unit can claim to be the pioneer of demand-regulated electronically-controlled pumps. The potential savings of two thirds of the pump’s electrical energy shows just how much a sophisticated, demand-regulated fuel feed system can contribute.—Dr. Markus Distelhoff, head of Continental Powertrain’s Fuel Supply Business Unit
The electronic control unit offers vehicle manufacturers and drivers further potential advantages, according to Continental. Low-wear brushless motors can, for example, be used in the pump to extend their service life still further. Contact-free sensors for measuring fuel levels in the tank, self-diagnosis by the pump and an economical solution for detecting leaks can also be incorporated into the electronics.
To date, electronic control units have been separate modules located outside the fuel tank. The innovative feature of the next-generation of supply units is that their electronics are integrated in the flange of the supply unit which is itself fitted as a self-contained module inside the fuel tank. This produces both economic and technical benefits. Integrating the unit reduces both assembly time and the space required in the vehicle. The time and cost of system integration is also reduced because the design of the pump and the electronics supplied by Continental are already matched to each other, thus shortening total development time.
In addition, less logistical effort is involved in procuring a single assembly, resulting in considerable overall cost benefits for the vehicle manufacturer. The short electrical connection between fuel pump and electronics within a single component inside the fuel tank safety area results in considerably better electromagnetic compatibility (EMC). Since there is no need for a cable with two plug connections, the system is more reliable, reducing overall costs still further.