Biomaterials Discovery

Applied Materials and Interfaces


Depth profiling & chemical imaging: fuel injector deposits

Faculty of Engineering paper of the year

Every year the Faculty of Engineering judges published papers from a selected short-list based on their overall quality.   This year, for papers published in 2020, the award went to Max Edney for the following publication:

Spatially Resolved Molecular Compositions of Insoluble Multilayer Deposits Responsible for Increased Pollution from Internal Combustion Engines
Max K. Edney, Joseph S. Lamb, Matteo Spanu, Emily F. Smith, Elisabeth Steer, Edward Wilmot, Jacqueline Reid, Jim Barker, Morgan R. Alexander, Colin E. Snape, and David J. Scurr
ACS Appl. Mater. Interfaces 2020, 12, 45, 51026–51035,

The paper describes how internal combustion engines are heavily used in diverse applications worldwide and achieving the most efficient operation is key to improving air quality as society moves to a decarbonized energy system.

Insoluble deposits that form within internal combustion engine components including fuel injectors and filters negatively impact CO2 and pollutant emissions. Understanding the composition, origins, and formation mechanisms of these complex materials will be key to their mitigation. In the paper the research team uncover the identity and spatial distribution of molecular species from a gasoline direct injector, diesel injector, and filter deposits using the state-of-the-art Orbitrap mass analyzer (3D OrbiSIMS) and secondary ion mass spectrometry equipment based at the University of Nottingham. The findings afforded from the 3D OrbiSIMS technique will help to reduce the effect that deposits have in vehicles, leading to reduced emissions and improved global air quality.

The full article can be read in the journal Applied Materials and Interfaces.

Posted on Wednesday 12th May 2021

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