Toyota develops Atkinson Cycle engine that delivers 78 mpg

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Atkinson Cycle Engine

Toyota has developed two hyper-fuel-efficient small-displacement gasoline Atkinson cycle engines: a three-cylinder 1.0-liter and four-cylinder 1.3-liter which will be introduced across the range from next year in 14 different variations. The smaller engine will deliver 78 mpg in the Toyota Aygo, an improvement of 30 percent.



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Fort Collins, Colorado aspiring to be the new Motor City

John Deere engine

A graduate student studying the effects of advanced biodiesel fuel on a John Deere engine.

Silicon Valley is recognized as the spawning ground of technology start-ups in the world of computers. Lower Manhattan has long been the place to set up shop for financial institutions.  And of course the epicenter of American automaking is Detroit.  Detroit has been evolving in recent times from a manufacturing center to a headquarters city. Still, there is no guaranty that its dominance is permanent.

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Dutch mandates alcolocks

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Netherlands has a new outlook on alcohol.

Starting December 1st, the Netherlands will be giving their drunk drivers a holiday gift. Drivers who have been pulled over with high blood alcohol content will be given “alcolocks” to install into their cars. The device acts as a breathalyzer that can keep an engine turned off…

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Six strategies to get better gas mileage this summer


The less you have to brake, the better your fuel economy.

With gas at nearly $4 per gallon you don’t need to buy a new car to get better mileage on your road trip this summer. Popular Mechanics put fuel-sipping advice to the test by outfitting an ordinary ten-year-old car with an extremely accurate fuel economy gauge and trying out all the gas-saving driving tactics we could think of. Here are six strategies that work, plus more quick tips for better MPG.


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Shock Wave Engine Could Make Hybrid Cars More Fuel Efficient


Wave rotor motor

Piston engines are big, heavy, dirty, complicated, and expensive pieces of machinery that have been around for a century. It’s about time for something better, and one option could be wave disk engines, which are small, light, clean, simple, and cheap pieces of machinery that aren’t around yet. But they’re close.



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IBM’s Traffic Lights Can Stop Car Engines


IBM developing a system to control your vehicle engine.

Thinking about zipping through that red light? Well, you won’t physically be able to if IBM has anything to say about it. The technology giant’s recent patent application for  “A System and Method for Controlling Vehicle Engine Running State at Busy Intersections for Increased Fuel Consumption Efficiency” prevents cars from running red lights by–get this–remotely stopping vehicle engines.


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Why Can’t Planes Fly Near Volcanic Ash? A (Very) Brief Look At Engine Failure


Ash does not blast.

Nearly a week into the volcanic ash crisis plaguing swaths of Europe, passengers and airlines alike are starting to tire of the restricted airspace. The haunting cloud drifting thousands of feet above Earth’s surface is often invisible to the naked eye both at ground level and high into the reaches of the troposphere, causing many to wonder how this material could impact a flight. Could all of these microscopic particles of ash really be that big of problem?

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Vacuum Cleaner Museum Opens

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What a sucker selection!

Some people collect stamps, but James Brown of Nottingham collects vacuum cleaners. In fact, “Mr. Vacuum Cleaner” has so many of them that he opened a museum:

He was eight, and desperate for a cleaner of his own, when he spotted a red Goblin 800 lying on a rubbish dump. “I took it home, wiped all the muck off it, plugged it in, and it worked,” he sighs.

“That was one of the most fantastic moments of my life…”

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