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CARB Low NOX Stage 3 Program - Final Results and Summary

Journal Article
ISSN: 2641-9645, e-ISSN: 2641-9645
Published April 06, 2021 by SAE International in United States
CARB Low NOX Stage 3 Program - Final Results and Summary
Citation: Sharp, C., Neely, G., Zavala, B., and Rao, S., "CARB Low NOX Stage 3 Program - Final Results and Summary," SAE Int. J. Adv. & Curr. Prac. in Mobility 3(4):1508-1525, 2021,
Language: English


Despite considerable progress over the last several decades, California continues to face some of the most significant air quality problems in the United States. These continued issues highlight the need for further mobile source NOX reductions to help California and other areas meet ambient air quality targets mandated by the U.S. EPA. Beginning in 2014, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) launched a program aimed at demonstrating technologies that could enable heavy-duty on-highway engines to reach tailpipe NOX levels up to 90% below the current standards, which were implemented in 2010. At the same time, mandated improvements to greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) require that these NOX reductions be achieved without sacrificing fuel consumption and increasing GHG emissions. The CARB demonstration program has progressed through several stages since it was initiated, and the Stage 3 Low NOX program completed in 2020 represents the culmination of these technology demonstration efforts. This effort, using a 2017 production diesel engine as a baseline, demonstrated a combination of technologies that enabled Low NOX emission levels near the 90% reduction target, while at the same time maintaining GHG emission rates at the same levels as the base engine.
Previous publications have gone into detail regarding individual elements of the Stage 3 technology package. This paper will present a summary of the final configuration and final results of the Stage 3 program, including results for the fully aged aftertreatment system after the equivalent of 435,000 miles of operation. The performance of the final test article will be shown over a variety of both regulatory duty cycles and other off-cycle operations. The final fuel consumption and GHG performance of the system will also be described based on the benchmarking methods specified by EPA in the Phase 2 GHG standards.