BMW has won an ÖkoGlobe award for the second straight year. The award was presented to the Bavarian automaker for its work on a thermoelectric generator. Um, what's that? Basically, using a process known as the Seebeck effect, electricity can be generated by a difference in temperatures. All right, fine... who cares? Under the hood of every car ever sold that has an internal combustion engine, a huge amount of heat is generated while the engine creates power to drive the vehicle. In fact, only about a quarter of all the energy released by the fuel's combustion is utilized in even the most efficient engines. Therefore, there is a great source of untapped energy already in each car on the road. BMW's researchers and engineers would love to tap into that unused energy with a thermoelectric generator, which could help capture some of that potential energy in the form of electricity that could then help power either the car directly or at least some of its peripheral systems. Very cool, and we hope something good comes from the research.

[Source: BMW]

PRESS RELEASE:

BMW Group Wins Award For Thermoelectric Generator

MUNICH – September 23, 2008: The BMW Group has received the prestigious ÖkoGlobe 2008 award for its development work on a thermoelectric generator.

The award was presented by the DEVK insurance group, the Automobil-Club Verkehr and the Center Automotive Research, Gelsenkirchen University of Applied Sciences.

It marks the second consecutive year in which the BMW Group has won this coveted distinction.

Dr. Klaus Draeger, BMW's Director of Development, accepted the ÖkoGlobe 2008 on behalf of the BMW Group, in the category "Development of the Combustion Engine",

It was awarded in recognition of research on implementing the Thermoelectric Generator in the car. This enables the utilisation of energy from waste heat from the combustion engine and is an example of how the BMW Group is exploiting new potentials for energy generation.

Prof. Ferdinand Dudenhöffer, Director Center Automotive Research, said at the award presentation: "The BMW Group's EfficientDynamics measures for raising the efficiency of series production vehicles point the way ahead for the automotive industry. The Thermoelectric Generator shows how this efficiency enhancement can be further developed in the future. Thanks to EfficientDynamics, the BMW Group has succeeded in maintaining driving pleasure while at the same time contributing to the lowering of emissions."

In his response, Dr. Klaus Draeger said: "We feel extremely honoured by what is now our third ÖkoGlobe, which we have been awarded this time for our Thermoelectric Generator. It strengthens our resolve to continue developing BMW EfficientDynamics for the benefit of our customers and of the environment."

Up to September 2008, the BMW Group had already delivered more than 1million vehicles with BMW EfficientDynamics technology to customers. 28 BMW Group models already have CO2 emissions of 140g CO2/km or lower. Until the end of this year 150 million litres of fuel will be saved in comparison to 2006 and the environment will be disburdened of 370,000 tons CO2.

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