The University of Brighton and engineering company Libertine are developing a commercially-viable exhaust heat recovery system for HGVs.

Part-funded by the government through Innovate UK, the heat recovery project uses a pair of Libertine's linear free-piston expanders to convert waste exhaust heat into electrical power.

Dr Rob Morgan (pictured), project lead and reader in the university’s School of Computing, Engineering & Mathematics, said: “The free-piston system offers efficiency and cost benefits over conventional turbine and screw expanders, thereby increasing market uptake of the technology in the commercial vehicle market and reducing CO2 emissions."

He added: “The potential reduction in CO2 emissions from successful commercialisation of the technology would benefit the road haulage industry through reduced operating costs and society as a whole in reducing greenhouse gas emissions.”

The system, which the designers said is “set to revolutionise engines with more efficient and greener technology” is scheduled to complete its first test programme by the end of this year.

It will be on display with a number of other breakthrough projects at the world’s first technology forum for linear power systems technology researchers and application developers: ‘Linear Power 2015’ at the university from 7-8 September.