Converting a Vehicle to run on Ammonia (NH3)
How does an ammonia dual fueled vehicle work?
The simplest implementation of the dual fueled ammonia vehicle conversion is physically similar to a compressed natural gas vehicle conversion. A new on-board tank holds liquid ammonia at only about 150 PSI. Regulators, valves and an electronic control system meter the flow of ammonia to the engine as needed after the engine is started and warmed up on gasoline, ethanol etc. A small amount of gasoline is used to idle the engine, then as the load is increased the additional energy is provided by adding ammonia. This is all handled automatically by the engine control electronic module.
Can I buy a conversion kit for my private car today?
No. Not at this time. Conversion work is currently concentrated with fleet vehicles and other large market applications. Although, with increasing gasoline prices, conversions for private vehicles are coming.
How much will private vehicle conversion cost?
Conversion to operate substantially on ammonia is similar to the process of converting a vehicle to operate on compressed natural gas or propane. The parts and labor are expected to be a couple of thousand dollars for private cars.
Of course if the vehicles were built to use ammonia (NH3) new at the factory it would cost much less. We contacted all the auto companies in previous years but none have responded yet.
When is it cost effective to convert my car and operate on ammonia?
Cost savings depend on the price of both gasoline and ammonia. During the NH3 car’s trip across America, gasoline was more than $2.25/gallon and ammonia was approximately $450/ton. This scenario represented a cost savings over operating on straight gasoline. Currently gas prices are fluctuating wildly, but one thing is for sure, in the future we can all expect increasing petroleum prices.
Can my converted car still be operated on just gasoline?
Yes, with the flip a switch the vehicle can run on 100% gasoline as normal. Something not possible with many natural gas vehicles.
How big is the ammonia tank?
Ammonia when liquefied contains roughly half of the energy of gasoline by volume. This means that an ammonia tank the size of your current gas tank will cary you more than 2/3rds of the distance of operating on gasoline alone, between fill ups when the contribution of the gasoline’s energy is considered.