Electrorheology is a pretty complicated looking word. It doesn’t even look like it’s spelled correctly, although it is. I checked. It’s equally difficult to define, even after I looked it up online. But I’ll attempt: Electrorheology is a phenomenon whereby particles of a liquid become more or less viscous upon the application of an electric field of very low current.
A Temple University physics professor has developed a simple device which could improve automotive fuel efficiency by 20 percent using electrorheology. The device creates an electric field that thins fuel, so that smaller droplets are injected into the engine. That leads to more efficient and cleaner combustion.
Six months of road testing in a diesel-powered Mercedes-Benz showed the device improved mileage from 32 mpg to 38 mpg. The device can apparently be used with diesel, regular gasoline, kerosene, and even biodiesel.
If this kind of technology is used in the trucking industry, it could save tens of billions of dollars and have a major impact on the economy by lowering the costs to deliver goods and services.