To prolong turbo life and combat thermal fatigue, powertrain engineers for the new Ford Fusion, 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 2.0-liter EcoBoost variants.
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 oxidizer turbo pump.
The upper temperature limit for the turbine wheel used on the 2.0-liter EcoBoost engine in Edge and Explorer is 970 degrees Celsius (1,778 degrees Fahrenheit). But in the sporty 2.0-liter EcoBoost for Fusion and Focus ST, the addition of tungsten and cobalt gives the alloy an upper temperature limit of 1,050 degrees Celsius (1,922 degrees Fahrenheit).
The benefit of using such high-temperature alloy is that Fusion 2.0-liter drivers can enjoy enthusiastic and spirited driving for the life of the car without degrading turbo reliability or its mechanical integrity.
Fusion 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 heat away from the turbocharger.
As a bonus, they might explain their Fusion 2.0-liter turbo’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 Fusion turbo, they also can claim, is designed to run safely at speeds up to 190,000 rpm, and is the same turbo used in the new, high-performance Ford Focus ST.
More information regarding the Fusion 2.0-liter can be found at http://www.ford.com/cars/fusion/2013/.
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