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Direct-injection Engine Research Consortium (DERC)

An international Direct-injection Engine Research Consortium founded in 2004 and coordinated by the Engine Research Center (ERC) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.



To assist engine manufacturers and related industries to meet future engine requirements for improved fuel efficiency and reduced costs.



Approximately 30 companies/institutes from industries related to diesel and gasoline engines currently are members. DERC is based on highly leveraged ERC government/industry sponsorship for basic research likely to impact a significant number of sponsors. The membership fee ($15k/year) is low to attract participation from a wide range of sponsors. Members also supply additional hardware and research support, if they feel it would be beneficial to a project. Companies can also choose more than one sponsorship unit, or they can pursue separate research contracts with ERC faculty to meet their company's research needs. Contract research with defined deliverables is the largest funding source for ERC research projects. However, DERC contributions are considered to be gifts to the University of Wisconsin and no specific deliverables are specified.



At its inception in 2004, DERC focused on emission reduction research. Post-2010, the focus shifted towards basic Diesel research and we changed the acronym DERC from "Diesel Emissions Reduction Consortium" to "Diesel Engine Research Consortium". Recently, to recognize the fact that gasoline DI is becoming competitive with diesel, we have again refocused DERC to include more than just diesel, and the revised name is "Direct-injection Engine Research Consortium".

With 60 years of comprehensive research experience in engine physics, the Engine Research Center has unique capabilities for improving fundamental understanding and control of engines through:


•Advanced experimental diagnostics and theoretical advancements

•Advanced model development for practical application to engines

•Integration and validation of simulation with experiments

•Combustion & emissions optimization using advanced technologies

•Development and application of advanced diagnostics to engines


In summary, ERC research integrates advanced experimental diagnostics and theoretical advancements to produce validated engine simulation codes for practical applications. Coupling of these technologies allows development of high fidelity tools for more comprehensive engine design. ERC goals for the 2006-2020 periods are the application of high fidelity models and analysis techniques for the optimization of low emission diesel combustion concepts, and the use of modeling for the development of advanced model-based control technologies.



Participation in the Consortium provides significant leveraging of funds to members. Current ERC funding from government and industry is approximately $3.5 M, and involves six faculty, five research staff, and over 80 graduate students and post-docs. Access to these resources can be applied pre-competitively by Consortium member companies, for solving specific engineering problems within their own business portfolio, such as to achieve future engine fuel economy and emission regulations.


The Consortium provides a forum for sharing information and research findings to engine manufacturers and related industries via,


•Focused Consortium-directed student research projects

•Annual membership meetings with electronic recordings

•Complimentary attendance at the ERC symposium every other year

•Quarterly e-newsletter report of Consortium activities

•Secured internet site for progress/communications and exchange (

•Access to meeting discussion summaries

•Public ERC research advances (theses, papers)

•Access to literature reviews / advance ERC publications

•Contact with ERC faculty/students including teleconferences


Industrial input and recommendations from participants complement on-going research at UW-ERC and research in Consortium member internal R&D labs. Informal benefits include:


•Industry and ERC student contacts

•Summer graduate student internships

•Exposure to ERC research for future products

•Sponsor ERC seminars introduce their company to students

•Sponsor company engineers as distant grad students (MEES)

•Licensing benefits of ERC-based intellectual property (Intellectual property handled by Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation)



Input from Consortium members is used to direct Consortium research projects under the auspices of Consortium research funding. The Consortium coordinator consolidates discussion and recommendations with Consortium members to influence the planning of research projects.

Financial Member contribution of $15,000 to the Consortium grants a year of membership. In-kind contributions will be accepted from companies also providing significant other monetary funding to ERC and must not exceed 25% of total contributions for research funding.


•Sponsorship funding is less than 10% of total ERC funding

•Significant leveraging against government and other funding

•Separate research contracts with sponsors (largest ERC funding source)

•Companies can choose more than 1 sponsorship unit, or can pursue research contracts with ERC faculty

•Members can evaluate the option of having specific research contracts with ERC faculty to meet their company's research needs

Contributions are considered gifts to the University of Wisconsin and are handled by WARF.

Intellectual property developed under the consortium is handled under the University of Wisconsin-Madison standard research agreement.

For more information, please email the consortium coordinator at:

Click here to learn how to become a sponsor!




The DERC Consortium receives project support from ERC faculty and staff and is managed by:


Consortium Director, Professor Jaal Ghandhi,

(608) 263-1684,

1500 Engineering Drive,

Madison, WI 53706.


Program Manager Michael J. Andrie,

(608) 263-1615,

120 Engineering Research Building,

1500 Engineering Drive,

Madison, WI 53706.

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