Caterpillar Inc.’s Jim Weber and Scott Leman today were named National Inventors of the Year for 2004 by the Intellectual Property Owners Association. Weber and Leman were team members of the extended group of Cat employees who created the company's breakthrough ACERT Technology, which significantly reduces Caterpillar diesel engine emissions.
The company has reduced on-highway diesel emissions in trucks and buses by nearly 90 percent since 1988 and will reduce those emissions another 90 percent by 2007 with ACERT Technology.
Weber and Leman invented a new air management system combined with precise valve control to reduce emissions at the point of combustion rather than downstream in the exhaust. An advanced air system with series turbochargers and a novel variable valve actuation device precisely provides the optimal quantity of cool, clean air into the combustion chamber at various engine speeds and loads thereby enabling more complete combustion and superior fuel economy.
This invention combined with advanced fuel systems, engine electronics and effective aftertreatment make up ACERT technology, cost-effectively reducing emissions.
Rich Thompson, recently retired group president who manned the helm during the creation of ACERT, says the award highlights Caterpillar's leadership in technology.
"We are more than yellow iron today. We are a high-tech company with brilliant engineers and scientists on the job creating new products and increasing value for our customers," Thompson said.