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Effects of FAME biodiesel and HVORD on emissions from an older-technology diesel engine

Mining Engineering , 2017, Vol. 69, No. 12, pp. 43-49

Bugarski, A.D.; Hummer, J.A.; Vanderslice, S.E.



The results of laboratory evaluations were used to compare the potential of two alternative, biomass-derived fuels as a control strategy to reduce the exposure of underground miners to aerosols and gases emitted by diesel-powered equipment. The effects of fatty acid methyl ester (FAME) biodiesel and hydrotreated vegetable oil renewable diesel (HVORD) on criteria aerosol and gaseous emissions from an older-technology, naturally aspirated, mechanically controlled engine equipped with a diesel oxidation catalytic converter were compared with those of widely used petroleum-derived, ultralow-sulfur diesels (ULSDs). The emissions were characterized for four selected steady-state conditions. When fueled with FAME biodiesel and HVORD, the engine emitted less aerosols by total particulate mass, total carbon mass, elemental carbon mass and total number than when it was fueled with ULSDs. Compared with ULSDs, FAME biodiesel and HVORD produced aerosols that were characterized by single modal distributions, smaller count median diameters, and lower total and peak concentrations. For the majority of test cases, FAME biodiesel and HVORD favorably affected nitric oxide (NO) and adversely affected nitrogen dioxide (NO2) generation. Therefore, the use of these alternative fuels appears to be a viable tool for the underground mining industry to address the issues related to emissions from diesel engines, and to transition toward more universal solutions provided by advanced engines with integrated exhaust aftertreatment technologies.