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Future potential for clean diesel power

Hydrocarbon Engineering,

According to Allen Schaeffer, the Executive Director of the Diesel Technology Forum, the growing acceptance and adoption of clean diesel systems utilizing selective catalytic reduction* systems (SCR) technology is having a positive impact on reducing emissions and increasing fuel efficiency across the board from passenger cards to the latest marine and rail engines.

“SCR based systems are helping manufacturers balance the competing goals of lower emissions and increased fuel efficiency”, Schaeffer said during his presentation at the 7th Integer Emissions Summit USA. “They are a ‘game changer’ that helps ensure that clean diesel power is the technology of choice for the foreseeable future”.

In commenting about the 250 000 new commercial heavy duty trucks sold in 2014, Schaeffer noted that the overwhelming majority, more than 95%, are powered by clean diesel technology utilizing SCR system technology.

In addition, more than one third of all commercial heavy duty trucks currently on the road in the US are using the first generation new clean diesel technology and nearly 16% of all registered commercial trucks are using the latest generation technology featuring SCR technology. AN increasing number of engineers, vehicles and equipment are utilizing SCR, and the systems are performing as designed and helping to slash the diesel fuel costs for truckers and other using the new generation of clean diesel.

“In just five month, the US Environmental Protection Agency and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration will issue what is already a closely watched proposal that will establish higher fuel efficiency requirements from commercial trucks in the years ahead. This will be the main subject of conversation in the months ahead and we look forward to this open dialogue and discussion”, Schaeffer said.

*Selective catalyst reduction (SCR) is an advanced active emissions control technology system that injects a liquid reductant agent through a special catalyst into the exhaust stream of a diesel engine. The reductant source is usually automative grade urea, otherwise known as diesel exhaust fluid (DEF). The DEF sets off a chemical reaction that converts nitrogen oxides into nitrogen, water and tiny amounts of carbon dioxide, which is then expelled through the vehicle tailpipe.

SCR technology is designed to permit nitrogen oxide reduction reactions to take place in an oxidizing atmosphere. It is called ‘selective’ because it reduces levels of NOx using ammonia as a reductant within a catalyst system. The chemical reaction is known as ‘reduction’ where the DEF is the reducing agent that reacts with NOx to convert the pollutants into nitrogen, water and tiny amounts of CO2. The DEF can be rapidly broken down to produce the oxidizing ammonia in the exhaust stream. SCR technology alone can achieve NOx reductions up to 90%.

Adapted from a press release by Emma McAleavey.

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