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2005-01-1139

SAE TECHNICAL
PAPER SERIES

Performance and Benefits of Zero


Maintenance Air Induction Systems
Neville J. Bugli and Gregory S. Green
Visteon Corporation

Reprinted From: New SI Engine and Component Design 2005


(SP-1966)

2005 SAE World Congress


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Printed in USA

2005-01-1139

Performance and Benefits of Zero Maintenance Air Induction


Systems
Neville J. Bugli and Gregory S. Green
Visteon Corporation

Copyright 2005 SAE International

ABSTRACT
Engine air filtration technologies currently used in air
induction systems typically utilize pleated paper or felt
type air filters. These air filter designs have been used
for many years in panels, cylindrical or round (pancake
type) type air cleaners. Pleated air filters are specifically
designed to be serviceable and hence their performance
is inherently limited by vehicle under-hood packaging
and manufacturing constraints. Due to these constraints,
majority of air cleaner designs are not optimized for
engine filtration and air flow management under the
hood.
Studies show that use of low performing serviceable
aftermarket air filters significantly affect the performance
and durability of engine air cleaners [9]. High mileage
studies confirm that engine durability, service issues,
warranty field returns and customer satisfaction was
affected by use of aftermarket filter brands.
Innovative air cleaner designs are required to maximize
filtration performance, improve flow management,
extend air cleaner service life and improve engine
durability. Filtration characteristics of reticulated porous
foams were studied and evaluated as a potential
solution. Reticulated foam media has a very open
structure, which allows it to have a relatively high dust
holding capacity (DHC) and capture efficiency. The
potential benefits of reticulated foam filters are longer
life, competitive cost and flexibility in packaging. A foam
filter model was also developed to predict performances
of multi-layer reticulated foam filters. Model predictions
for a four layer foam filter design have been presented
and discussed.
A new Long Life Filtration System was developed for
OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) applications
(2003/2004 Ford Focus Vehicle) and requirements. This
new technology uses a unique multi-layered reticulated
foam media which does not need servicing or
maintenance for the life of the vehicle [150K+ miles].
This technology also provides some unique advantages
over the traditional serviceable air induction filters.

Accelerated field evaluations are also presented to


support the new Visteon technology using Long Life
Filtration System. These studies show the viability and
flexibility of multi-layer foam designs.
Keywords: Long Life Filters, Long Life Air Cleaners,
Reticulated Foams, Multi-layered Foams, nonserviceable, zero maintenance.

NOMENCLATURE
AIF = Air Induction Filters
AIS = Air Induction Systems
CARB = California Air Resource Board
DHC = Dust Holding capacity
EAC = Engine Air Cleaners
EIS = Engine Induction Systems
ISO = International Standards Organization
LLF = Long Life Filtration
MAFS = Mass Air Flow Sensor
NA = North America
NVH = Noise Vibration and Harshness
OEM = Original Equipment Manufacturer
PPI = Pores Per Inch
PZEV = Partial Zero Emission Vehicle

INTRODUCTION
Foam filters have been used in the aftermarket for
motorcycle and high performance vehicle air intake
systems with limited success. Most foam filter designs
are super-saturated with viscous oils or tackifiers to
improve their filtration performance levels. This is further
evidenced by the oil puddle that collects in the plastic

bag used to package these foam filters. Most of the


foam aftermarket filters exhibit high oil migration,
contamination of downstream sensors, contamination of
moving parts, poor service life and poor engine
protection. However, the successful use of OEM foam
filters for engine intake has been reported previously
[1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 8].
This paper describes a new Long Life Filtration (LLF)
System technology developed for OEM applications
using a unique multi-layered reticulated foam media and
air cleaner design. Filtration characteristics of reticulated
porous foams were studied and evaluated. Multilayered
reticulated foam media were designed having high
filtration performance levels.
The multi-layered
reticulated foam maximizes the dust holding capacity
and efficiency due to its depth/deep-bed filtration
properties. This technology also provides some unique
advantages over the traditional serviceable air induction
filters. A filter model was developed to predict
performances of multi-layer reticulated foam filters. The
model can accommodate multiple foam layers in various
thicknesses. The model also allows for the foam layers
to be dry or treated to improve performance.
Comparisons of experimental data to foam predictions
show good correlation [1].
Based on the LLF technology, an innovative Zero
Maintenance Long Life engine air cleaner system was
developed for 2003 and 2004 Ford Focus Vehicle.
Previous papers [1, 2] discuss details of the Ford Focus
long life air cleaner development that meets all OEM
requirements. This new system is completely sealed and
does not require any service for 150K+ miles. This paper
presents further performance enhancements to the
original design [1, 2].
With the long life system, OEM's will enjoy substantially
reduced warranty costs associated with air filter service.
Consumers will no longer need to worry about using
sub-standard replacement filters and additional
installation problems that can damage engines [9, 10].
This new technology can save consumers between $100
and $300 over the life of the vehicle. Higher cost savings
may be realized for dedicated fleets and rental
companies.

ENGINE AIR INDUCTION SYSTEMS


Engine air induction systems are designed to meet
engine protection requirements, engine durability
requirements, air flow management, horse-power
targets, achieve desired torque tuning, water/snow
ingestion management, NVH targets, vehicle sound
tuning and more recently managing evaporative
emissions. Tradeoffs in performance requirements are
often made in designing air induction systems based on
OEM customer requirements [10, 11, 12, 13].

Engine Air cleaners [EAC] are designed to effectively


remove airborne contaminants in order to protect the
engine throughout its service life [12]. The engine
requires that the ingested air meet a minimum level of
cleanliness to reduce engine wear, improve engine
efficiency and protect electronic sensors [12]. However,
in actual service when aftermarket components
(especially air filters) are used the OEM design integrity
is generally compromised. The majority of the air filters
available in the aftermarket exhibit poor performance
levels [9]. Use of low performing aftermarket filters may
lead to excessive engine wear and system
contamination [6, 9, 10]. A robust engine air cleaner
should meet and exceed the following parameters.
1. Maximize the available package space
2. Improve filtration performances;
a. Higher fine dust efficiency &
b. Higher fine dust capacity
3. Accommodate higher engine flow rates and
media face velocities
4. Reduce overall engine wear
5. Improve engine power/torque
6. Improve MAFS performance
7. Allow competitive costs
8. Meet evaporative emissions over 150K miles
9. Improve sealing to meet LEVII, ULEV & PZEV
10. Withstand higher under-hood temperatures
11. Extend filter service life
12. Improve engine durability to 150K+ miles
13. Reduce parts complexities
14. Improve Recyclability

ENGINE AIR INDUCTION SYSTEMS AND


AFTERMARKET AIR FILTERS
OEM (original equipment manufacturers) air induction
designs are optimized to meet required levels of
performances using a systems approach and synergy
for the vehicle. Invariably, when aftermarket components
are used the design integrity and durability of the OEM
system is compromised. Use of aftermarket air filters in
OEM air cleaners presents a very challenging dilemma.
High mileage studies conducted by Ford Motor
Company in 2000 - 2002 clearly indicated that; a)
aftermarket air filters and b) mis-assembly of the air
cleaner parts significantly contributed to field returns and
higher warranty issues. Their high mileage studies
yielded the following issues;
- OEM air cleaner design integrity could be
compromised
- Broken and cracked air cleaners were observed
- Air cleaners had severe leakage issues
- Aftermarket air filters were very difficult to service
- Mis-assembly of parts during service was highly
probable even when no tools were required.
- Majority of the air filters were pre-maturely
serviced.
- Engines exhibited stalling and starting issues.
- Mass Air Flow Sensor contamination was high.

Figure 1 shows pictures of OEM engine air cleaners


from high mileage fleet evaluations. The air cleaners
exhibited filter seal tear and filter collapse into the tray.
Figure 2 shows typical aftermarket air filter for a light
truck application. These aftermarket filters exhibited filter
warpage and loss of performance. Additional information
on performance of aftermarket filters can be found in
reference [9, 10]. The filters could exhibit pleat collapse,
pleat separation, torn seals and permanent compression
set on seals.

loss, allows the filter to achieve its highest efficiency


thus providing maximum engine protection. Frequently
servicing the air filter, especially within the first 30% of
its service life can significantly increase engine wear [7].

Figure 2: Typical examples of warped aftermarket


filters.

Figure 1: Typical examples of air cleaner field returns


from high mileage study using aftermarket filter brands.

ENGINE AIR INDUCTION SYSTEMS AND FILTER


SERVICE LIFE
Estimating service life for a particular engine size or
vehicle can be complex. However, understanding
service life requirements is crucial for optimum engine
protection. Engine air cleaners should be serviced after
they have reached or surpassed an allowable restriction
rise due to contaminant loading [11]. Further, the point at
which the engine air cleaners are serviced affects both,
filtration performance and overall vehicle performance.
Engine air cleaners having excessive restriction values
can significantly degrade overall engine performance. It
has been well demonstrated that the filtration efficiency
of the AIF improves with contaminant loading [7, 12].
With an increase in efficiency, the engine wear
significantly decreases [7]. Servicing air filters at the
recommended (design intent) restriction rise or pressure

In reality, engine air cleaners are pre-maturely serviced


by the end customer. As a result the customer never
utilizes the full value of the air filter. This is due to the
fact that the engine air filter never achieves its highest
efficiency levels, thus reducing overall engine protection
by increasing the rate of engine wear [7, 11, 12]. Figure
3 shows the efficiency of a typical engine air cleaner
using a pleated paper filter design. Data for figure 3 was
generated from benchmark studies on air induction
systems. Figure 3 shows that the air filter never reaches
its full efficiency (illustrated by dash line). The customer
is also throwing away a perfectly good filter, which
increases the cost of vehicle ownership.
SERVICE LIFE CRITERIA - Service life expectations for
light, medium & heavy-duty vehicles are different.
Typical service interval for light/medium duty vehicles
under normal driving conditions is about 30K miles.
Engine performance for light and medium vehicles
generally requires that most EAC should be serviced,
once the restriction rise has reached or exceeded about
2.5 kPa beyond initial restriction [10, 11].
Service life expectations are generally recommended for
normal driving conditions. Typically, that includes the

97th percentile customer profile. Service life


expectations for severe/dusty driving conditions are
significantly shorter compared to normal conditions [10,
11].

representative of the typical field environment


[10, 11,12]. Using ISO Coarse test dust yield higher dust
capacities, but have very little correlation to real world
environment. Table 1 below shows the summary of the
extensive field evaluations performed on various
customer fleets and on proving grounds.

Cumulative Gravimetric Efficiency vs. Dust Fed For a


Serviceable Filter Using Traditional Designs

C umulative Eff., % using


ISO Fine Test D ust

100.0
Design Intent
Service Interval

Vehicle

99.5

99.0

98.5

98.0
0

100

200

300
400
Dust Fed, Gms

500

600

Figure 3: Efficiency performance of a typical pleated


engine air filter challenged with standard ISO fine test
dust. The dotted line indicates the performance
benefits not realized by the OEM customer.

FACTORS AFFECTING SERVICE LIFE Service life


primarily depends on the application and end use.
Factors affecting service life can be complex and
multivariate in nature. Some key factors are listed below;
-

Air cleaner housing design


Inlet (dirty) tube location
Outlet (clean) tube location
Air Filter design
Filter media type
Filter media area
Filter dust holding capacity
Filter dust loading characteristics
Driving conditions
Type of contaminant
Contaminant Shape/Size/Concentration
Environmental conditions
Customer awareness
Cost of ownership

Various studies have been performed to predict or


estimate Air Cleaner Service Life with limited success
[6, 10, 11, 12]. Generally lab or bench studies are
conducted to measure the performance (DHC,
gravimetric efficiency, restriction, fractional efficiency
etc.) of the air filter. These studies are performed using
standard test procedures and standard test dust,
providing limited information regarding filter service life.
Analysis of extensive Real World field evaluations
indicated that using ISO Fine Test dust is most

Small /
Medium
Passenger
Cars & SUVs
Large/Full
Size
Passenger
Cars, SUVs,
Minivans &
Lt. Trucks
Medium/
Large Trucks

Contaminant
Loading
g/1000 miles

Expected
Min. Dust
Capacity**
at 30K miles
service, g

Expected
Min. Dust
Capacity**
at 150K miles
Service, g

60

300

3.5

105

525

150

750

** Dust capacity expectations based on ISO Fine


Test Dust
Table 1: Estimated Minimum ISO Fine Dust Capacity
Required for Vehicle Segments. Data derived from
extensive field studies [10, 11, 12].

ZERO MAINTENANCE LONG LIFE ENGINE AIR


INDUCTION SYSTEM FOR ENGINE INTAKE
Engine air induction systems (AIS) typically use paper or
felt type air filters [10, 11,12]. The filtration
characteristics for these media are well understood and
modeled. However the model applications are fairly
limited. These designs have limitations as discussed in
previous sections above. Due to these constraints,
majority of the air cleaner designs frequently do not
provide optimal filtration and flow management underhood. However, the current OEM air cleaners are
designed and suited for serviceability.
OEM automakers are constantly striving to provide
more product value to the end customer. OEM
manufacturers are constantly improving their products
and systems to reduce both development time &
manufacturing process time, and also warranty and
maintenance costs. The zero maintenance Long Life
Filtration (LLF) System makes it possible for the vehicles
to operate using the same air cleaner for at least 150K
miles or more without requiring any maintenance or
service, under normal driving conditions.
Use of porous foam filters for engine intake and related
air filter applications have been reported previously

[1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6]. For developing Visteons zero


maintenance Long Life Filtration System, reticulated
(open cell) foam structures were studied ranging from 20
ppi (pores per inch) up to 110 ppi (pores per inch). By
designing multi-layered reticulated foams using the
appropriate pore sizes, the usage of viscous treatments
(oils) can be significantly reduced.
The reduction of viscous treatment usage was one of the
key goals of the development team. Experience and
analysis of field failures have demonstrated that the
migration of viscous treatments from a filter element can
lead to contamination and subsequent failures of the
Mass Air Flow Sensor, and other critical engine sensors.
The use of multiple layers in the filter allowed the
development of a control for migration of the viscous
treatments out of the filter element. New control methods
for applying viscous treatments were utilized in the
Visteon Long Life Filtration system. Specific amounts of
oils are added to the foam, and additional processing
was utilized to distribute the oils into the center of the
foam matrix. The multi-layer construction allows the
arrangement of the layers to provide a barrier to oil
migration into the air stream.
An additional benefit afforded from the use of multi-layer
foam construction is that reticulated foam can be coated
with activated carbon. The resulting structure functions
as both a collector of dust particles and an adsorber of
hydrocarbon vapors. A filter that contains such an
adsorbing layer, and designed with DHC to exceed 150K
miles, provides an OEM with an integrated solution to air
filtration and under hood evaporative emission control.
The new sealed zero maintenance LLF air cleaner
design can provide an attractive package as a standalone or a complementary system to support a full PZEV
solution. PZEV development as it relates to AIS is
discussed in a separate technical paper [13]. The next
generation of engine air induction systems will have to
support and meet United States Tier 2, California LEV-II
(low emission vehicle) and PZEV vehicle emission
requirements. The California Air Resources Board
(CARB) is mandating the LEVII and PZEV requirements
for 15 years/150K miles. It has already been established
that hydrocarbon vapors flowing and/or diffusing out
from the inlet manifold and engine will have to be
reduced or removed to meet the new LEV-II and PZEV
requirements. For PZEV designated vehicles, OEM
automakers have determined that the use of aftermarket
components may seriously compromise the design and
functional integrity of the air cleaner system.
MULTILAYERED FOAM MEDIA - Open cell
polyurethane foams are engineered in various pore
sizes ranging from 20 to 100 ppi (pores per inch). The
pore sizes are defined based on a pressure drop method
(MIL-PRF-87260A {UASF} 1998). Polyurethane foams
have a very unique 12-sided three-dimensional structure
also known as a Pentagonal Dodecahedron structure.
Each of the 12 cell sides is pentagon in shape [1,3,4,5].

The pentagon is formed by struts or strands. A whole


matrix of these cells make up the foam giving it a very
high permeability and surface area, ideal for depth or
deep bed filter design. Porous foam media have been
used in various filtration applications to remove airborne
particles for low efficiency filtration applications. Porous
foams when used in a multi-layered configuration can
effectively be used for medium to high efficiency filtration
applications [1, 2, 3]. All known filtration mechanisms are
present within the foam structure to collect particles. The
reticulated foam filter media provides the following
benefits:

Reticulated 'open cell' foam is about 96%-98%


porous.
High surface area for contaminant collection.
Foams can be accommodated in multiple shapes
and sizes.
Foams are durable materials resistant to water
and snow and solvents.
Available in multiple pore sizes.
Fairly uniform pore size distribution.
Selective layers can be treated with viscous oils
to improve filtration performances.
High dust capacities and efficiencies are
possible.
Cost effective

For reticulated foams the pore size and strand (fiber)


diameter are important parameters to control filtration
performance levels. Figure 4 shows an example of a
clean reticulated and dust loaded ( light and heavy)
foam. The dust loading clearly shows the dendrite
formation of the dust around the strands within the pore.
FOAM FILTER MODEL - A semi-empirical model has
been developed to predict pressure drop, collection
efficiency, dust loading behavior of foam filters and
estimate service life. Model can be applied to any Pore
count between 20 and 110 pores per inch using multiple
layers. The model is suited for reticulated foam having a
basis weight in the range of 24 32 kg/m3 (1.5 2.0
lb/ft3). The pressure drop model applies to face
velocities in the range of 75 to 300 m/min. Overall
accuracy of model predictions is about 20% for
collection efficiencies, pressure drop and dust holding
capacities. The model predictions are based on uniform
flow conditions.
The model can accommodate up to 12 layers of foam,
dry or selectively treated to capture dust. The model
predicts pressure drop, dust capacity, initial and overall
gravimetric efficiencies at selectable pressure drop rises
of up to 5 kPa beyond initial restriction.
In addition, the model also predicts performance of
individual layers in terms of restriction rise, dust loading
and cumulative gravimetric efficiency. The performance
predictions of individual layers are critical in designing
the multi-layer foam filter. The model also predicts the
fractional size efficiency of the multi-layer foam. Model
input/output parameters are briefly listed below.

pressure drop, kPa

dust under normal driving conditions. Efficiency curves


show that the design optimal face velocity for the 4 layer
foam design is in the range of 100 to 200 m/min..

2.0
1.8
1.6
1.4
1.2
1.0
0.8
0.6
0.4
0.2
0.0

Example of Multilayer (4-layer) LLF Model Predictions


Face Velocity vs. Pressure drop

y = 0.0003x1.6003

Input Parameters
i Number of layers
i Thickness of each layer
i Dry or Treated
i Face velocity through media
i ISO coarse or fine test dust
i Terminal pressure drop rise
i Assumes uniform flow distribution
Output Parameters
o Initial clean pressure drop
o Initial mass efficiency
o Differential dust distribution on each layer
o Cumulative dust distribution on each layer
o Total Dust mass loading
o Fractional size efficiency
o Service life prediction

50

100
150
200
Face Velocity, m/min.

250

300

Figure 5: Pressure drop vs. Face Velocity prediction for


a 4 layer long life filter.

700
dust capacity, g w/ISO
Fine test dust

Figure 4: Example of a clean and dust loaded foam


filter.

Example of Multilayer (4-layer) LLF Model Predictions


Face Velocity vs. Dust Capacity

650
600
550
500
450
y = -1.5795x + 833.8

400
350
300
0

100
200
Face Velocity, m/min.

300

The model was used to predict the performance of a


high capacity 4 layer zero maintenance long life foam
filter. The 4 layer foam design would meet or exceed
performance levels typical of current filtration
technologies used on engine air cleaners [2, 9, 10, 12].
The foam media was about 63.5 mm in thickness with a
footprint of about 600mm2. The prediction curves that
follow illustrate the modeling capabilities of foam filters.
Figure 5 shows the predicted pressure drop vs. face
velocity of the 4 layer foam. The pressure drop
increases can be approximated by a power function.
When the face velocity is doubled the pressure drop
increases by about a factor of three. Figure 6 shows the
predicted dust holding capacity vs. face velocity. In the
range of 100 to 250 m/min., the dust DHC can be
linearly approximated. For example the dust holding
capacity dropped by about 30% when face velocity was
doubled.

Figure 6: Predicted Dust Holding Capacity vs. Face


Velocity for a 4 layer long life filter.

Figure 7 shows the predicted initial and overall efficiency


of the 4 layer media. Figure 7 also shows the target
minimum efficiencies required when using ISO fine test

Figure 7: Predicted Gravimetric Efficiency vs. Face


Velocity for a 4layer long life filter.

dust capacity, g w/ISO


Fine test dust

100.0

Example of Multilayer (4-layer) LLF Model Predictions


Face Velocity vs. Gravimetric Efficiency
overall
efficiency

initial
efficiency

99.5
99.0
98.5
98.0
97.5

targets

97.0
0

50

100
150
200
Face Velocity, m/min.

250

300

Figure 8 shows the estimated service life of the 4 layer


foam for a large passenger car application. The service
life varies almost linearly with face velocity. Based on
the optimal design face velocity of 100 200 m/min., the
service life can range from 148K to 190K miles.

Example of Multilayer (4-layer) LLF Model Predictions


Media Depth vs. Pressure drop
0.2234

y = 0.3232x

0.9
0.8
0.7

Initial Gravimetric Eff.= 99.11%


Overall Gravimetric Eff. = 99.84%
Face Vel = 150 m/min

0.6
0.5
0

50
100
Media Depth, mm

175000.0
150000.0

Example of Multilayer (4-layer) LLF Model Predictions


Media Depth vs. Dust Capacity

1200

y = -431.77x + 234677

1100
1000

125000.0
100000.0
0

50

100
150
200
Face Velocity, m/min.

150

Figure 9: Predicted Restriction Rise vs. Media Depth for


a 4 layer long life filter.

Dust Capacity, g w/ISO


Fine test Dust

Service Life, miles

Example of Multilayer (4-layer) LLF Model Predictions


Face Velocity vs. Service Life
200000.0

pressure drop, kPa

As expected the efficiency increases with increasing


face velocity, as the dominant particle capture
mechanism is by interception and inertia [8]. The
efficiency drop off at higher face velocities may be
attributed to particle bounce and re-entrainment.
Multilayer foam filters can be designed for a range of
velocities. Depending on the number, type and size of
multilayer foam filters the optimal face velocity range
may be different.

250

300

Figure 8: Estimated service life for a 4 layer foam


designed large passenger car.

Figures 9 and 10 show the effect of increasing thickness


of multilayer layer foam filter. The foam filter was
designed to operate at a face velocity of 150 m/min. For
each increasing thickness the foam layers were
designed to maintain the same initial and overall
removal efficiencies. The end effect was to offer the
same engine protection with increasing dust capacities
and service life. Figure 9 shows the effect of increasing
thickness on restriction rise. The pressure drop can be
approximated by a power function. However in the range
of interest, the pressure drop increase was almost linear
with increasing thickness.
Figure 10 shows the effect of thickness on dust holding
capacity. The dust capacity can also be closely
represented by a liner function. It is interesting to note
that doubling the thickness only increased the restriction
rise by about 20%. However doubling the thickness
increased the dust capacity by about 90% (almost
double).

y = 9.8175x

900
800
700
600

Initial Gravimetric Eff.= 99.11%


Overall Gravimetric Eff. = 99.84%
Face Vel = 150 m/min

500
400
300
0

50
100
Media Depth, mm

150

Figure 10: Predicted Dust Capacity vs. Media Depth for


a 4 layer long life filter.

LONG LIFE
STUDIES

FILTER

REAL

WORLD

FIELD

A production prototype air cleaner was developed for a


large passenger car application equipped with a 4.6L 2valve engine at a rated flow of 9.91m3/min. Figure 11
shows the location of the Long Life filtration System in
fleet vehicles. The Long Life filtration System was
packaged outside the engine compartment and behind
the front bumper below the driver side headlight. Figure
12 shows a cut-away view of the air cleaner showing the
foam multilayered filters.

Total Mileage and Restriction Rise For All Vehicles


4.0

250000

Miles

Restriction Rise

3.5
3.0
2.5

150000

2.0
100000

1.5

R e s trictio n , k P a

D is ta n ce , m ile s

200000

1.0

50000

0.5

Figure 11: Long Life AIS used in Fleet Study. The


system was packaged outside the engine compartment.

0.0
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38

Vehicles

Figure 13: Miles accumulated and restriction rise on


fleet study.

The data for contaminant loading and restriction rise was


also plotted in Figure 14. There is an increasing trend of
restriction rise with contaminant loading. On average we
can expect about 500g of contaminant collected at a
2.5kPa restriction rise.

Extensive field evaluations were performed on the above


Long Life filtration System using multi-layer foams over a
2- 3 year period at four different locations in North
America (NA). Field evaluations were performed at; 1)
New York City, 2) Orlando, 3) Las Vegas and 4) Phoenix
- Maricopa County [1,2]. Additional information can be
found on the fleet studies in ref. 1 and 2.
All fleet vehicles operated on a single long life filtration
system for 2 to 3 years without any customer complaints
or engine performance degradation. These systems did
not require any maintenance or service actions during
the entire study period. Customer satisfaction with
engine and filter performance was high [1, 2].
Figure 13 shows the mileage accumulated and the
restriction rise for all fleet vehicles (38 vehicles). The
restriction rise was measured on a bench test before
and after the fleet tests were concluded (2 to 3
years).The restriction rise does not show a continuous
increasing trend with mileage. This was expected as the
vehicles were operating in four different environments
and driving conditions. The dash line shows the
restriction rise trend.
On average the vehicles
accumulated about 109K miles with a restriction rise of
0.94kPa.

Dust spot efficiency was also measured on random LLF


air cleaners returned from the field. The spot efficiency is
measured after feeding 20g of ISO fine test dust on the
filtration stand using maximum rated flow conditions.
Figures 15, 16 and 17 all show increasing efficiency
levels with contaminant loading, miles accumulated and
restriction rise. These increasing trends are desirable as
it demonstrates the reliability of the LLF filter after
contaminant loading and with time. On average the dust
spot efficiency increased from about 98.85% to 99.3%
with contaminant loading.

8.0
Restriction Rise, kPa

Figure 12: Cut Away View of the Long Life Air Cleaner
used in Fleet Study.

Overall Contaminant Loading vs. Restriction Rise


All Fleet Data

7.0
6.0
5.0
4.0
3.0
2.0
1.0
0.0
100

Contaminant Loading, g

1000

Figure 14: Contaminant loading and restriction rise for


fleet study.

Dust (gravim etric) S pot


E fficiency, %

D u s t (g ra v im e tric )
S p o t E ffic ie n c y , %

100.0
99.8
99.6
99.4
99.2
99.0
98.8
98.6
98.4
98.2
98.0

Restriction Rise vs. Measured Dust Spot


Efficiency - All Fleet Data

Contaminant Loading vs. Measured Dust Spot


Efficiency - All Fleet Data

100

200 300 400


contaminant loading, g

500

100.0
99.8
99.6
99.4
99.2
99.0
98.8
98.6
98.4
98.2

600

Restriction rise. kPa

Figure 15: Contaminant loading vs. dust spot efficiency.

Mileage Accumulated vs. Measured Dust Spot


Efficiency - All Fleet Data

100.0
99.8
99.6
99.4
99.2
99.0
98.8
98.6
98.4
98.2
0

50000 100000 150000 200000 250000 300000


Vehicle Miles

Figure 16: Vehicle miles accumulated vs. Dust spot


efficiency

Figure 18 shows the overall normalized contaminant


loading based on data from all fleet vehicles. On
average we can expect about 2.1g/1000 miles. Based
on confidence limits we can expect about 3.5g/1000
miles of contaminant loading at 99% confidence. Hence,
at a service life of 150K miles we can expect about 525g
of total contaminant to be ingested.
Table 2 below compares the lab bench measurements
to model predictions for the Long Life Filtration systems
used in the taxicab fleet study. The dust capacity
measurements based on model predictions were within
20%. The efficiency predictions were within 0.5%.
Based on these measurements the LLF for the taxicab
fleet may not require any service for 95K miles.

contaminant collected, g/1000 miles

Dust (gravim etric) Spot


Efficiency, %

Figure 17: Restriction rise vs. Dust spot efficiency

4.0

Overall Contaminant Loading Data Including


All Fleet Vehicles

3.5
3.0
2.5
2.0
1.5
1.0
0.5
0.0
avg

95% confidence

99% confidence

Figure 18: Normalized Contaminant loading.

333g

Long life
filtration system
Model
Predictions
287 g

98.41%

98.47%

98.83%

99.35%

Long life filtration


system
Experimental Data
Dust Capacity, g
Initial Gravimetric
Efficiency, %
Overall
Gravimetric
Efficiency, %

Flow rate= 8.0 m3/min. constant


Test Dust = ISO fine

Table 2: Experimental data compared to model


predictions for Long life filtration used in Taxicab Fleet
Study.

BENEFITS OF ZERO MAINTENANCE LONG LIFE AIR


INDUCTION SYSTEMS - The zero maintenance LLF air
cleaner design offers some unique and significant
advantages to OEM automakers and end usage
customers. Some of the performance benefits have
been discussed above. Additional key design benefits
include the following;
1. Increases air filter service intervals over 150K
miles.
2. Improves robustness and durability of air
induction systems.
3. Provides OEMs and end customers a complete
solution hassle free design.
4. Allows a variety of geometric shapes to be
packaged.
5. Allows increased packaging flexibility.
6. Reduces vehicle lifetime service cost.
7. Reduces the impact of serviceable filters
occupying landfills.
8. Minimizes the possibility of using substandard
aftermarket filters during the warranty period.
9. Allows manufacturing complex geometries
compared to traditional paper and felt type
filters.
10. Allows ease of filter design tuning to local
market requirements.
11. Enables incorporation of evaporative emission
controls to meet PZEV and LEVII vehicle
requirements for the sealed air cleaner design
12. Allows use of a proprietary filtration to quickly
design LLF system performances.

A PRODUCTION ZERO MAINTENANCE LONG


LIFE ENGINE AIR INDUCTION SYSTEM FOR
SMALL PASSENGER CAR ENGINE

contaminants. The use of multi-layer reticulated foam


accommodates complex geometries, which further aids
the LLF in packaging flexibility, freeing up valuable real
estate under the hood and around the engine. The
performance of the LLF can be tuned to meet normal
driving conditions using proprietary CAE models.
Figure 20 shows the complete Long Life Air Induction
system removed from the vehicle. This system was
initially developed for the 2003 Ford Focus PZEV
vehicles. For the 2004 MY all Ford Focus have adapted
this system across the board.

Figure 19: Zero Maintenance Sealed Long Life Air


Cleaner System for 2003/4 Ford Focus. The Long Life
Filtration System is covered by one or more Visteon
Patents. Additional patents are currently in progress.

A sealed production Long Life Filtration System was


designed and developed for a small passenger car
application [2003/2004 Ford Focus]. Additional
information on the Long Life Filtration System design
and performance can be found in Bugli N et. al [1,2]. The
Long Life Filtration System requires zero maintenance
and service for 150K miles under normal driving
conditions. The Long Life Filtration System is packaged
outside the engine compartment. Figure 19 shows the
LLF design as installed in the vehicle. The air cleaner is
completely sealed and packaged outside the engine
compartment behind the front bumper on the driver side.
The inlet tube was packaged in the fender area for
improved water protection and lower restriction as
shown in Figure 19. The outlet tube uses a slot-in MAFS
design for improved performance. The large plenum
downstream of the air cleaner includes a sound
attenuating resonator and a hydrocarbon emissions
arrestor for vehicles requiring PZEV compliance [1, 13].
The new Visteon Long Life Filtration System uses a
unique multi-layered reticulated foam media and
construction for OEM applications to trap and remove

Figure 20: Production Long Life Air Induction System


shown from inlet tube to throttle body inlet.

D ust C apacity, Gms

Figure 21 shows a cross-section of the sealed LLF


design. The cross-section shows the multi-layered
reticulated foam used for achieving higher filtration
performance. Selective layers of the reticulated foam are
treated with commercially available chemicals, to
enhance the contaminant trapping efficiency of the LLF.
The foam layers are also trapped and held rigidly
between two plastic screens. The plastic screens are
designed to be part of the air cleaner cover and tray
assembly and are necessary to achieve the desired
filtration performance levels.

1100
1000
900
800
700
600
500
400
300
200
100
0

Average Dust Capacity Measured Using ISO Fine Test Dust @


2.5 kPa Restriction Rise

Target capacity for Ford Focus = 300 g

Dry Paper
Technology

Treated Synthetic Felt 2003/4 Ford Long Life


Paper
Technology Focus Long Technology
Capability
Technology
Life
Technology

Figure 22: Dust Holding Capacity Performance of Long


Life Technology compared to Traditional designs.

Figure 21: Details of Multilayer Foam For Zero


Maintenance Sealed Long Life Air Cleaner System

Figure 23 compares the average initial gravimetric


efficiencies measured on traditional technologies to a
clean LLF using ISO fine test dust [10]. The initial
gravimetric efficiency target was set at 98% min. using
ISO fine test dust. The target efficiency was calculated
based on OEM benchmark data covering over 150
vehicle types [10]. On average the LLF achieved an
initial efficiency of 99.5%. Compared to traditional
technologies the Long Life filter initially allows about 4
times lower dust penetration to the engine. This can be
significant for engine wear, protection and durability [7].
Average Initial Gravimetric Efficiency Measured @ 20 Gms of
ISO Fine Test Dust

Figure 22 compares the average dust capacity


measured on traditional technologies and a clean Long
Life filter using ISO fine test dust [10]. The target dust
capacity was set at 300g using ISO fine test dust [2].
The target capacity was calculated based on field
evaluations and specific engine size for this application
[2, 10, 11]. On average the LLF holds about 500g of ISO
fine dust at a 2.5 kPa restriction rise. This target
capacity represents a service interval of 150K miles for
the Ford Focus application based on normal driving
conditions [Table 1]. Compared to traditional
technologies the Long Life filter achieves about 2.5 to 5
times higher dust capacity.

100.0
In itia l G ra vm e tric E ff., %

ZERO MAINTENANCE LONG LIFE FOAM FILTER


PERFORMANCE Long Life air cleaners were
extensively tested in the lab and in real world field
environments. ISO fine test dust was used for all
evaluations to more closely represent actual field loading
[11]. The production LLF air cleaner design meets or
exceeds
known
customer
OEM
engineering
specifications as applied to conventional air cleaners.
More details on air filter testing and specifications are
covered in reference [14].

99.5
99.0

Target capacity for Ford Focus


= 98% minimum

98.5
98.0
97.5
97.0
96.5
96.0
Dry Paper
Technology

Treated Synthetic Felt 2003/4 Ford Long Life


Technology Focus Long Technology
Paper
Capability
Life
Technology
Technology

Figure 23: Initial Efficiency Performance of Long Life


Technology compared to Traditional designs.
Similarly Figure 24 compares the average overall
gravimetric efficiencies measured on traditional
technologies and a clean LLF using ISO fine test dust
[10]. The overall gravimetric efficiencies were measured
at a 2.5kPa restriction rise. The overall gravimetric

efficiency target was set at 98.5% min. using ISO fine


test dust. The target efficiency was calculated based on
OEM benchmark data covering over 150 vehicle types
[10]. On average the LLF achieved a high overall
efficiency of 99.5. Compared to traditional technologies
the Long Life filter allows about 1.5 to 3 times lower dust
penetration to the engine. Again, this can be significant
for engine wear, protection and durability [7].

Figure 26 shows the restriction rise of the Ford Focus


Long Life Filter with dust loading. The restriction rise rate
was very linear with dust loading and is predictable. This
trend is significantly different when compared to
traditional filter designs where a prominent change over
point is present when dust cake formation takes over.
This was expected as the foam filter behaves like a
depth media.

Average Overall Gravimetric Efficiency Measured @ 2.5 kPa


Terminal Restriction Rise Using ISO Fine Test Dust

Restriction Rise vs. Dust Fed


Ford Focus Long Life Filter

Target capacity for Ford Focus


= 98.5% minimum

99.5

R e striction R ise, kP a

O v e ra ll G ra v im e tric E ff.,%

100.0

99.0

98.5

98.0
Dry Paper
Technology

Treated Synthetic Felt 2003/4 Ford


Technology Focus Long
Paper
Life
Technology
Technology

Long Life
Technology
Capability

4.0
3.5
3.0
2.5
2.0
1.5
1.0
0.5
0.0
0

100

200 300 400 500

600 700 800

Dust Fed, g

Figure 24: Overall Efficiency Performance of Long Life


Technology compared to Traditional designs.

Figure 26: Pressure drop rise vs. dust loading for the
Ford Focus Long Life Filter.

Figure 25 shows one of the primary advantages of using


the Long Life Filter Technology. Figure 25 compares the
high efficiency level of the Long Life filter to traditional
serviceable filters [Figure 3]. Clearly, the Long Life
technology offers better engine protection throughout the
vehicle life.

The measured performance of the Ford Focus Long Life


Filter was also compared to model predictions. Table 3
shows the comparisons. The model predictions compare
fairly well. The capacity predictions are within 20%. The
efficiency predictions were within 0.5%. The restriction
predictions were within 25%.

Cumulative Eff., % using


ISO Fine Test Dust

100.0

Cumulative Gravimetric Efficiency vs. Dust Fed comparing


Serviceable Filters and Long Life Technology
Design Intent
Service Interval

Dust Capacity, g
Initial Gravimetric
Efficiency, %
Overall Gravimetric
Efficiency, %
Filter Restriction,
kPa

99.5
Ford Focus Long
Life Technology

99.0

98.5

98.0
0

100

200

300
400
Dust Fed, Gms

500

600

Figure 25: Efficiency increase of Long Life Filter


compared to traditional pleated filter. The dashed
line indicates the performance benefits not realized
by the OEM customer.

LLF
Experimental
Data (average)
Ford Focus AIS
499g

LLF Model
Predictions
Ford Focus AIS
609g 130g

99.52%

98.9%

99.48%

99.51%

1.13.315

0.94 0.125

Flow rate= 6.4 m3/min. variable


Test Dust = ISO fine
Table 3: Experimental Long Life filter performance
compared to model simulations

SUMMARY

CONCLUSIONS

Field evaluations and laboratory analysis successfully


demonstrates the viability and flexibility of Long Life
Filtration System designs.

OEMs and vehicle owners can realize numerous


benefits from the elimination of maintenance to the
vehicle, as has been demonstrated with 100,000 mile
spark plugs, long life coolants, and electronic ignition
systems. The Long Life Filtration technology developed
by Visteon Corporation provides a method for minimizing
the requirements to replace or clean engine air filters.
Zero maintenance filtration for engine air cleaners have
been modeled, tested and validated in vehicle fleets for
durability and robustness. The multilayer foam filtration
technology is a cost effective method to eliminate engine
air filter maintenance while improving engine durability,
reducing evaporative emissions, and reducing overall
material usage.

Model predictions correlate with experimental data for


filter performance levels. Capacity and Restriction
predictions using the model are within 20% and the
efficiency predictions are within 0.5%.
The multi-layer foam technology provides superior
filtration, and therefore engine protection, as compared
to standard OEM filters designed for regular
replacement. The multi-layer foam filter technology also
provides improved performance when compared to filter
media that are serviced by cleaning at regular intervals.
The greatest areas of improvement are in filter efficiency
and the elimination of filter oil migration.
The Long Life Filtration System challenges the customer
and after-market perceptions that the air filter needs to
be replaced every 5K to 30K miles, especially under
normal driving conditions. The LLF design minimizes the
possibility of using substandard aftermarket filters during
the warranty period.
Zero Maintenance Long Life Filters can be very
effectively designed to meet and exceed customer
requirements for the life of the vehicle (150K miles)

REFERENCES
1. Bugli N. J and Green G. S, " Air Induction Systems
Using Long Life Reticulated foam Media", Technical
Paper Presented at the World Filtration Congress
and Exposition, New Orleans, , Louisiana, April 19 22, 2004.
2. Bugli N. J and Dixon C. J, " Long Life Engine Air
Cleaner Technology For Automotive Passenger
Cars, SUVs and Light Trucks", Technical Paper
Presented at the American Filtration and
Separations Society, 16th Annual Conference and
Exposition, Reno, Nevada, June 17-20, 2003.

Long Life Filtration System designs offer the OEM


customer some very unique advantages and value over
the life of the vehicle.

3. Pizzirusso J. F., "The Unique Properties of


Polyurethane foam for small engine filters", SAE
technical paper 951811.

a. Improved system reliability and robustness over the


life of the vehicle

4. Curti C. M," Reticulated Polyurethane Foam",


Technical
paper,
Automotive
Engineering
International Publication, Vol. 109 No. 6, June 2001,
pages 88 92.

b. Reduced operating, design and warranty costs.


c. Improved packaging benefits.
d. Improved tuning filter design to local market
requirements using the proprietary filtration model.
e. Reduced landfill waste. The VLLF is constructed
from 100% polymers, easy to recycle. There are no
used filters to be disposed to landfills.
f. 'Sealed for life' to provide the required resistance to
consumer tampering with emission controls in the
AIS.
g. Added hydrocarbon trapping layer to achieve
reduced evaporative emissions for LEV II Tier2
compliance, or to achieve 'zero' evaporative
emissions for PZEV certification.
h. Low cost of ownership compared to more traditional
air cleaner designs, saving consumers $100 to
$300 over the life of the vehicle (Higher cost
savings may be realized for dedicated fleets and
rental companies).

5. Rucker J.," reticulated Polyurethane Foam For the


Filtration Industry", Technical Paper presented at
INDA Filtration 2001 Conference.
6. Nouis R., (1993), " Predicting the Ninety-Fifth
Percentile Dust Environment for Passenger Vehicles
in the Continental United States," SAE technical
paper 930018, presented at the SAE International
Congress and Exposition, Detroit, March 1-5, 1993.
7. Barris M., (1995), "Total Filtration: The Influence of
Filter Selection on Engine Wear, Emissions, and
Performance," SAE technical paper 952557, Fuels &
Lubricants meeting and exposition, Toronto, October
16-19, 1995.
8. Poon W. S., Liu B. Y. H and Bugli N. J, (1997),
"Fractional Efficiency and Particle Mass Loading
Characteristics of Engine Air Filters", SAE technical
paper 970673, also in SAE special publication SP1252 pp. 103 - 112, presented at the SAE
International Congress and Exposition, Detroit, Feb.Mar 1997.

9. Bugli N. J and Leffel J. (2001), "Engine Air Induction


Filtration Systems- Design challenges for the Next
Generation", Advances in Filtration and Separation
Technology, Volume 15, American Filtration and
Separations Society Annual Conference, Tampa,
Florida, 2001.
10. Bugli N. J, (2001), "Automotive Engine Air Cleaners
Performance Trends", SAE technical paper, 200101-1356, presented at the SAE International
Congress and Exposition, Detroit, March 5 8, 2001.
11. Bugli N. J, (1998), " Service Life Requirements For
Engine Air Induction Filters", Advances in Filtration
and Separation Technology, American Filtration and
Separations Society, 1998 AFS annual conference,
Vol. 12, pp. 38 - 49.
12. Bugli N. J, (1997), " Filter Performance
Requirements for Engine Air Induction Systems ",
SAE technical paper 970556, also in SAE special
publication SP-1252 pp. 55-69, presented at the
SAE International Congress and Exposition, Detroit,
Feb.-Mar 1997.
13. Leffel J. and Green G. S., Development of
Evaporative Emissions Filter for Automotive
Applications, Technical Paper Presented at the
American Filtration and Separations Society, 16th
Annual Conference and Exposition, Reno, Nevada,
June 17-20, 2003.
14. Bugli N. J, Puckett R., and Lanier V., Filtration
Challenges and Conical Filter Development for
Engine Air Induction Systems, SAE technical paper
950941, presented at the SAE International
Congress and Exposition, Detroit, February 27 March 2, 1995.

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
The authors would like to sincerely thank Mr. Brian
Condron, Mr. Michael Adams, Ms. Celine Jee Dixon, Mr.
Ryan Grimes, Mr. Jeffrey Leffel, Mr. Scott Flora, Ms
Grace Alent and Mr. Scott Dobert of Visteon Corporation
for their help and support in developing the zero
maintenance Long Life Air Cleaner.

CONTACT
Neville Bugli
Technical Fellow
Visteon corporation
734-710-4751
734-736-5600 fax