A study of new and unconventional materials for use in engine construction highlighted several interesting developments. One which stood out as providing useful physical properties at low cost was the cement-based material known as NIMS. A design study for a cylinder block molded from this material was undertaken and a novel construction method devised. In order to gain practical experience with the material, a valve cover for a four-cylinder gasoline engine has been designed and manufactured. The cover is being developed on an engine in a test vehicle and shows potential for noise reduction with little or no increase in cost or weight.

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