Rocket Ship Superalloy Technology Aids Ford Mondeo EcoBoost Durability

Wed, Apr 8, 2015

  • Modified superalloy used in the Space Shuttle main engine helps performance and durability of the ford Mondeo EcoBoost turbo
  • Material supports upper limit of temperature extremes for commercial turbocharges; used on Mondeo and Focus ST EcoBoost engines
  • Integrated exhaust manifold casting combines cylinder head with exhaust manifold to aid cooling, direct more energy into the turbo faster

MELBOURNE– Enthusiasts may say the all-new Ford Mondeo equipped with the 2.0-litre EcoBoost turbo engine is a rocket ship but Ford engineers will tell you parts of its engine depend on technology from one.

To prolong turbo life and combat thermal fatigue, powertrain engineers for the Ford Mondeo, in conjunction with a team at supplier BorgWarner, went to the upper limits of commercially available turbo materials when deciding on the turbine wheel for the turbocharger fitted to the 2.0-litre EcoBoost engine.

The same material has been tried and tested in outer space, as a version of it was used on the Space Shuttle main engine’s high-pressure fuel turbo pump and the blades of its high-pressure turbo pump.

The upper temperature limit for the turbine wheel used on the 2.0-litre EcoBoost engine in the Mondeo and Focus ST, with the addition of tungsten and cobalt, gives the alloy an upper temperature limit of 1,050 degrees Celsius.

The benefit of using such high-temperature alloy is that the Mondeo drivers can enjoy enthusiastic and spirited driving for the life of the car without degrading turbo reliability or its mechanical integrity.

Mondeo owners can highlight the fact that the BorgWarner K03 turbocharger features both water and oil cooling; when the engine is running, it is primarily oil-cooled, but after the engine is turned off, the water cooling system creates a thermal water siphon to help draw away heat from the turbocharger.

As a bonus, they might explain that their Mondeo 2.0-litre EcoBoost’s performance is further strengthened by an integrated exhaust manifold design that combines the cylinder head and exhaust manifold into one casting; this allows the creation of smaller internal passageways (reduced plenum volumes) that direct more exhaust gas energy into the turbo more quickly than a separate head and manifold assembly.

The Mondeo turbo is also designed to run at speeds up to 190,000 rpm, and is the same turbo as the high-performance Focus ST.

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