EXCLUSIVE: Sainsburys’ fleet of ‘cold power’ air-driven automotive engines harness energy storage potential – and cut emissions

A Dearman air-driven automotive engine being assembled
A Dearman air-driven automotive engine being assembled

EXCLUSIVE by Scottish Energy News

It sounds like another ‘base metal to gold’ Faustian bargain to manufacture automotive engines that run on nothing more than air.

But that achievement was detailed at Heriot Watt University’s Energy Academy conference yesterday by David Sanders, commercial director of the Dearman engine company.

Speaking in Edinburgh, Sanders spelt out how his company is now powering a fleet of delivery trucks for the Sainsbury grocery chain driven by Dearman engines which use (cooled) liquid nitrogen.

When warmed up, this heat-expansion back to normal air temperature drives traditional piston-heads and cylinders in the truck automotive engines, which otherwise use standard auto-mechanical parts.

And these engines are produce zero-emissions (at point of use on the road) and they are cost-competitive with traditional and compliant Euro-6 diesel engines, said Sanders.

He also highlighted the contrast with the cold air-driven Dearman engines with diesel-driven refrigeration units which frequently sit atop cold-store produce trucks.

He said: “These on-truck refrigeration units produce six times as much N0X as a diesel Euro-6 engine – yet they are entirely unregulated and run on red diesel at 40p a litre!

“At Dearman, we have developed a patented zero-emission engine, currently undergoing advanced road trials, which would significantly cut emissions compared to polluting diesel engines.

“The impact of adopting zero-emission TRUs would be huge. If Britain’s 84,000 TRUs became zero-emission, that would equate to taking 5.5 million Euro6 diesel cars off our roads, or 505,000 Euro-6 trucks.”

  • With more than 200 academic staff and researchers, there are also more than 2,500 post-graduate students at Heriot Watt University’s Energy Academy.

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