Vegetable oil as a fuel in the agriculture

Retrofitting of tractors for multi fuel application


11 October 2017 – In the agriculture the widening of the application of vegetable oil as a fuel in tractors could be a contribution to more sustainability. However, the compatibility fuel-leading components with vegetable oil fuel must be checked, so that the operational safety and lifetime duration of tractors and other agricultural machinery can be guaranteed. To utilise vegetable oil from rape as a part of a Multi-Fuel application strategy, a research project investigates in particular the interaction between fuels and diesel injectors.

In particular in modern injectors with high injection pressure and small gap sizes internal and external depositions can occur by the application of biogenic fuels. Under certain circumstances this can lead to malfunctions and shutdown times of agricultural machinery. For both deposition types critical operating points (driving cycles) are to be identified which can lead to forced deposition. Part of the investigation will be fuel blends of vegetable oil and conventional diesel fuel which appear in the real operation in different refuelings. In addition, the behaviour of injectors used in different agricultural machinery is examined.

On the basis of the investigation results “keep clean” strategies for the avoidance of deposition formation are to be developed on the one hand. On the other hand, a tailored injector regeneration during operation is to be developed against appearing depositions. The "clean-up" strategies already recognised in predecessor's projects are to be led to the application maturity. For the successful application of a regeneration an early indication is to be developed on the base of characteristic values of the formation of internal and external depositions. Research partners are the Oel Waerme Institute OWI, the Technology and Support Centre (TFZ), the regineering GmbH, the ERC Additiv GmbH and the TEC4FUELS GmbH.

This project was supported by the Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture with the funding code 22402417.

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About OWI Oel-Waerme-Institut GmbH

The OWI Oel-Waerme-Institut GmbH is an independent and non-profit research institution that researches and develops concepts and technologies in the areas of heat and power generation in cooperation with partners from the industry and research. The focus is on an energy-efficient and low-emission utilization of fossil and regenerative liquid fuels. The aim is to develop new marketable products. OWI is an affiliated institute to RWTH Aachen University and sees itself as a mediator between fundamental research and application. Within the framework of technology transfer OWI works on projects which are financed from public funds as well as on industrial research agreements. Clients range from manufacturers of domestic heating systems to companies of the automotive supply industry, the petroleum industry and the industrial furnace engineering to several other industries.