APYRON TECHNOLOGIES WORKING TO IMPROVE AIR QUALITY AND ENABLE COST SAVINGS FOR THE AUTOMOTIVE INDUSTRY
Company's Sulfur Trap Technology for Diesel Engine Emissions Reduction Attracts Attention of Navistar International and Wins Grant from Department of Energy
ATLANTA - October 15, 2001 - Apyron Technologies Inc., a leading developer of advanced materials, today announced it will develop and commercialize a proprietary sulfur trap for light-duty diesel engines. Apyron will work with International Truck and Engine Corporation, the principal subsidiary of Navistar International (NYSE: NAV) and a worldwide leader in the manufacture of diesel engines. Apyron's proposal for the sulfur trap project was recognized with a $1.38 million grant from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE).
"The sulfur trap project will enable the transportation industry to better control harmful automotive emissions," says Rom Papadopoulos, chairman of the board of directors and CEO of Apyron. "Apyron continues to focus on creating solutions for a more efficient, less expensive, and most importantly, a healthier tomorrow."
The sulfur trap project is Apyron's latest endeavor focused on developing advanced solutions for the energy, transportation and chemical industries. The company's innovations also include an improved SCR catalyst for power plant emissions reduction, as well as products and solutions under development - such as high-performance three-way catalysts for the automotive industry, an improved catalyst for methanol production and a hydrogen reformation catalyst for fuel cell applications.
The key component of Apyron's solutions is the company's patented Advanced Material Synthesis Technology (AMST). AMST is a pioneering methodology that allows better control of physical and chemical properties down to the nano-scale level, yielding custom-designed materials with superior performance characteristics.
Diesel Engine Sulfur Trap - Taking a Step Toward Cleaner Air
After an intense technical review, the DOE selected Apyron as the sole grant recipient to develop a sulfur trap for diesel engines in light-duty vehicles. The program will commence this month and will take 2 years to complete.
Apyron will work closely with International Truck and Engine Corporation to test the sulfur trap at International's facility in Melrose Park, Illinois.
As a product of the combustion process, sulfur, as SO2, enters the exhaust gas and poisons conventional emission control devices, rendering them ineffective. Apyron's sulfur trap will enable existing emission control devices in diesel engines to work more effectively to reduce existing nitrogen oxide (NOX) emissions. NOX is a precursor for ozone formation. Today, millions of Americans reside in areas where ozone levels exceed national air quality standards, and are therefore at increased risk of respiratory problems, including asthma.
Heavy-duty diesel vehicles and non-road equipment are recognized as large contributors to NOX formation. However, light-duty diesel vehicles - sports utility vehicles, mini-vans and pick-up trucks - are also predicted to become significant contributors. Due to the diesel engine's efficiency and the affordability of diesel fuel, several manufacturers plan to introduce new diesel-powered light-duty vehicles.
Recent regulations have been proposed to reduce sulfur levels in diesel fuel, but they will be costly and will not address the sulfur in the lubricating oil. Alternatively, the DOE is promoting the development of an exhaust system that employs a sulfur trap to remove sulfur from the exhaust to protect the treatment device.
Apyron will work to develop the sulfur trap using a proprietary material, based on the company's Advanced Material Synthesis Technology (AMST) and customized for superior sulfur adsorption.
DOE Grant is the Second for Apyron
This achievement marks Apyron's second DOE grant within the last two months. The company also won a Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) award from the DOE, including a Phase I grant of $100,000, for its proposal to develop an improved catalyst for the production of methanol. Six months after project initiation, Apyron will be eligible for a Phase II grant, which will help the company commercialize its technology. In total, the work performed under the two phases of the SBIR project would be worth $1 million.
The DOE created the SBIR award program in 1982 in order to obtain high quality scientific and technological research from innovative businesses across the United States. Since 1982, the program has awarded more than $10 billion to technology companies in various industry sectors.
Apyron's specialized catalyst will convert carbon monoxide into methanol at a much lower temperature than required with existing commercial catalysts. This feature will enable companies to produce methanol with less energy and at a lower cost. Methanol has traditionally been used as a building block for many chemicals. It also has been used as an energy source for many applications, including fuel cells.
About Apyron Technologies
Apyron develops, markets and licenses technology-based materials that enable customers to achieve breakthroughs in product innovation, create new market opportunities and improve the quality of life worldwide. Applications of Apyron's proprietary technologies include solutions in the energy, transportation, chemical, medical and water industries. Founded in 1994, the Atlanta-based private company has more than 50 employees, including internationally respected chemists and scientists that manage projects in multiple countries.
About International Truck and Engine Corporation
International Truck and Engine Corporation is the operating company of Navistar International Corporation (NYSE: NAV), which is headquartered in Warrenville, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago, and had year 2000 sales and revenues of $8.5 billion. International Truck and Engine is a leading producer of mid-range diesel engines, medium trucks, school buses, heavy trucks, severe service vehicles, and parts and service sold under the International brand by the industry's broadest dealer and distribution organization. The company also is a private label designer and manufacturer of diesel engines for the pickup truck, van and SUV markets. Additional information can be found on the company's web site at www.InternationalDelivers.com
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