SLIDE: Savings at Lubricated Interfaces Deliver Efficiency


Caterpillar UK Engines Company Ltd, in partnership with Ford Motor Company Ltd, BP, Oxford Lasers Inc. and Nottingham University, will launch a 2-year program of research in which the basic principles of friction will be re-examined using a novel test rig which will replicate conditions in conventional powertrains, specifically, between the piston rings and the cylinder liner walls. The consortium aims to extend the capabilities of this novel, but practical, test rig to fully validate the new friction models that will be derived. Further, the outcome of this work will include the development of a lubricant formulated to interact with the topography and material of the cylinder and piston rings. In the long term, if all powertrain bearing surfaces are considered, it is believed that a significant improvement in fuel economy is possible by the reductions in friction that will be demonstrated in this project. This research programme, scheduled to start in late 2013, is enabled by an £812,000 grant from the UK government’s Technology Strategy Board (TSB), and builds on an earlier programme, led by Ford, which was also co-funded by the TSB. The programme of research will be performed across the consortium members' facilites in Peterborough, Basildon, Reading, Oxford and Nottingham.

Lead Participant

Project Cost

Grant Offer

Perkins Engines Company Limited, PETERBOROUGH £349,975 £ 174,988


Lubricants UK Limited, MIDDLESEX £220,080 £ 110,000
Ford Motor Company Limited, Brentwood, United Kingdom £190,001 £ 95,001
Oxford Lasers Limited, Didcot £155,726 £ 93,436
University of Nottingham £338,783 £ 338,783


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