UltraClean Diesel Fuel in Mining
Over recent years the mining industry has gradually witnessed the introduction of diesel engines equipped with advanced High Pressure Common Rail (HPCR) fuel injection systems. The introduction of these new designs is primarily the result of new emission regulations, which now requires these engines to improve their overall performance and reduce harmful pollutants with the culmination of these requirements being 2015 when all new diesel engines shall be rated to Tier 4.
Advanced HPCR injection systems operate at pressures in excess of 30’000psi. These advanced systems are capable of multiple injection events per cycle and involve clearances between moving parts in the order of 1-4mm. For these reasons, HPCR systems are far less tolerant to contamination than previous Electronic Unit Injector (EUI) designs. This increased demand on diesel fuel cleanliness presents new challenges to both bulk diesel fuel contamination control and the on-board engine fuel filters that are intended to protect the injector and high pressure pump from damage or failure.
To protect HPCR components, much lower concentrations of contamination need to be maintained within the fuel system than were previously accepted. Making this even more challenging are the lagging practices in the design of fuel handling and storage facilities within the mining industry due to the significant capital costs that are typically involved to make such improvements. This paper will discuss the challenges that are faced within the industry and will provide guidelines to achieving Ultra-Clean Diesel (UCD).
Diesel Filter Dirt Holding Capacity
The diesel fuel filter business is a multi-billion dollar industry with hundreds of manufacturers around the world producing a wide variety of products for contamination control in diesel engines and for bulk storage and dispensing applications. Competition to produce these filters and gain a slice of this lucrative market is extremely high and as such, manufacturers are continually striving to gain a competitive edge; be it through product innovation or sales and marketing strategies.
One of the more popular strategies of recent times is to advertise the dirt-holding capacity of the filter element, simply represented as total weight in grams or ounces. This paper is intended to provide an insight into this widely used reference factor and will explore the reasons why the average consumer should avoid using such information as a standalone determining factor for filter selection or as a predictor of actual filter service life.