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A hybrid turbocharger is an electric turbocharger consisting of an ultra high speed turbine-generator and an ultra high speed electric air compressor. The turbine and compressor are high-speed aeromachines, as in a conventional turbocharger. The electrical motors run at speeds in excess of 120,000 rpm and when used as generators, generate electricity at up to 98.5% electrical efficiency. High electrical efficiency is paramount, because there is no mechanical link between the turbine and compressor. In other words, hybrid turbocharger refers to a series hybrid setup, in which compressor speed and power are independent from turbine speed and power. This design flexibility leads to further improvements in turbine and compressor efficiency, beyond a conventional turbocharger.
The designers claim that hybrid turbocharger technology (HTT) virtually eliminates turbo lag and enables engine downsizing without compromising engine performance. This means that a HTT equipped engine can save up to 30% on CO2 emissions and fuel economy compared to an equivalent naturally aspirated engine.
HTT has currently been developed and tested to proof of concept stage by UK based company, Aeristech Ltd who also hold the patents for the design.