05-20-2009 09:36 PM
Hello to everybody in the CAT world.
My company which is in marine port service wishes to conduct an assessment of the use of Biofuel (Soy).I have chosen a vessel which has twin 3046E TA engines. One will run 20% biofuel (Soy) while the other will use the currant Diesel fuel. Has anyone used 20% Biofuel in there engines for any length of time i.e. at least 1 year, if so has there been any problems or improvements with injectors / fuel lines / filters / fuel tanks Etc. Also has there been any improvements in the length of time between engine services. If there is anyone that can assist it will be appreacited
06-09-2009 08:46 AM
In response to the question of using B20, we provide our customers with guidelines, information and specifications (including SEBU documents such as those that can be accessed at the link attached below) to allow them to use fuels, including biodiesel fuels successfully. We are not always aware of the experiences as the customers work directly with our dealers, or on their own. Internally, we validate our engines on the fuels that are per specifications (ASTM, EU, EPA designated, etc..), which includes validating our engines using biodiesel fuels.
Link to Cat SEBU documents (Cat Fluids Recommendations; viewable format ): http://www.cat.com/parts/oils/oil-specifications
The latest field trial that Caterpillar was involved in was the 2 Million Mile Haul using B20 biodiesel in on-highway trucks. The trial ran a set of 10 over-the-road long haul trucks on B20 biodiesel from soy resource and compared the maintenance and performance to a set of 10 control trucks using Ultra Low Sulfur petroleum diesel for a total of 2 million miles. All trucks use Cat C13 engines. The interim reports are available on the following website:
We conducted engine tear-down and are currently evaluating the components of engines from the two sets of this trial and comparing hardware characteristics. As the interim report states, this trial was a success and we expect to release our findings soon.
In addition, we are working with another application to try biodiesel on a model year 2007 EPA certified engine. The application is a transport bus that runs long hours daily. The plan is to progress from B5 to B20 then to higher blends. This trial is closely monitored by Caterpillar and the customer. The planned outcome is determining the ability of the engine to run on B100 and in the process to better understand the impact of various biodiesel blend levels on maintenance, engine hardware and emissions reduction devices.
One more source may be beneficial, the Alberta Renewable Diesel Demonstration, which can be found on the Climate Change Central website. This test ran B2 and B5 in Alberta, Canada, to determine viability of running biodiesel in cold climates. The trucks involved in the trial included some that were powered by Cat.
Also, we can provide guidelines for an action plan if customers are conducting a trial of biodiesel. The plan provides information related to the testing and monitoring needed and we can provide general support for some aspects of the tests such as fuel quality, engine oil testing and recommendations, additives, etc (depending on the level of cooperation).
In general, customers who adhere to the guidelines and recommendations we provide should not experience problems when they use the fuels as directed.
Customers who are planning to run alternative/renewable fuels are strongly recommended to consult with the OMM of their engine/machine and with the SEBU document relevant to their engine or machine. We provide specifications, information and guidelines in the SEBU documents that would allow customers to run the recommended fuels successfully. Also, we recommend the following document related to the handling practices that would allow successful maintenance of the fuel:
06-16-2009 04:05 AM
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07-13-2009 01:29 AM
According to your statements, CAT is mainly doing research study on on-highway truck while i heard that CAT has decided to exit on-highway market (north america). Is there any particular consideration why the test still be conducted on this application (on-highway)?
A question of my own interest, only. Thanks!
01-15-2010 04:52 PM
I'm sure there's a good chance you already have your answer by now, but just in case...
Caterpillar did announce they were exiting the on-highway truck engine business due to stricter emission standards coming in 2010. There exit however is going to be only temporary and brief while they partner up with Navistar to create an entire vocational truck and engine that can meet governmental regulations. The truck and engine will be a joint partnership venture but both will be cat branded and distributed by caterpillar dealers. The idea of the agreement is to share knowledge and compete in the expotentially growing competitive on-highway truck market in North America and beyond. Check out the link below. There is a ton of other info online as well.
01-20-2010 11:35 PM
I was involved a couple of years ago with a biofuel trial on a small supply boat, I also know of a dive operator in So Cal that is using B20 with competative engines (John Deere) and a dive boat in Hawaii (Maui) that has been using B20 for about 2 years. Mechanically none I know have had any engine issues, and it appears the engnes run quite well on the B20. However, in the tria I was involved in and in talking to the people operating the dive boats, the biggest problem is that the biodiesel tends to have a cleaning effect on the fuel storage tnaks and fuel supply plumbing. I also know this has been a problem with several users of on hiway engines. The Maui dive boat operator replaced his fuel tanks and fuel piping, and since then appears to be operating very well. The supply boat I worked with stopped using biofuel, but still had filter plugging issues for a couple months afterwards. The biodiesle really didn't cause any engne problems, but the operator had problems with a steady supply of fuel and storage issues.
This topic was discussed in the power forum and I provide some fuel consumption and emissions data from some of my old notes, if you want to look there.
Hope that helps.