International Journal of Applied Science and Technology

ISSN 2221-0997 (Print), 2221-1004 (Online) 10.30845/ijast


Well-to-Wheels Analysis of Energy Use and Greenhouse Gas Emissions for Alternative Fuels
Lin Gao

Concerns with petroleum oil supplies and greenhouse gas emissions have stimulated research into new alternative fuels, including natural gas, ethanol, methanol, biodiesel, electricity and hydrogen. Instead of only considering petroleum energy consumption and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in vehicle operation stages, it is important to analyze the energy use and emissions throughout the whole fuel cycle from well-to-wheels (WTW). In certain cases, energy consumption and/or greenhouse gases can be much larger in the well-to-pump (WTP) stage than in the energy use and emissions produced to propel the vehicle. This paper reviews these fuels, the fuel production pathways and their applications in vehicles. An analysis based on software simulations was performed on each fuel to calculate the total energy use and emissions throughout the entire energy cycle. Results were compared to a conventional gasoline engine vehicle and showed the potential advantages and disadvantages of each alternative fuel.

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