• Environmental Power Solutions
  • Environmental Power Solutions
  • Environmental Power Solutions
  • Environmental Power Solutions

Generators Going Green! Ultra Low Sulfur Diesel Fuels, Particulate Filters & More

For large scale power generation, particularly mobile remote, emergency or standby power production are dependent on the diesel prime mover to power the unit. Stationary units, like those in electrical power substations can benefit from the availability of natural gas, allowing for very clean running power generation.

Ultra Low Sulfur Diesel Fuels

The modern diesel uses electronic controls that monitor engine performance while balancing the fuel and injection systems. These controls allow for very clean burning of the fuel and load management. Modern diesel fuels contain less sulfur, a major pollutant, at 15 parts per million (ppm) versus the older standards of about 550 ppm. One of the byproducts of diesel with high sulfur content is sulfur dioxide and sulfur trioxide that readily convert to sulfuric acid. Lower sulfur means lower lubricity, biodiesel blends are becoming popular because of the high lubricating qualities of biodiesel. The US gobbled 50 billion US gallons of diesel in 2006. Another problem is the production of NOx (pronounced NOX), mono-nitrogen oxides, NO and NO2, that reacts with ammonia and moisture to form nitric acid. In Europe, the standard safeguard is to inject urea, causing the formation of N2, gaseous nitrogen already in the air and water.

Diesel Particulate Filters

Any smoke, engine or camp fire is composed of solid particulates. These fall to the ground, but while airborne they invade the lungs causing disease and cancers. Diesels have particulate filter traps to capture smoke particles. Earlier the diesel engines, even those in good running order would belch smoke going up a hill, but modern electronic engine controls have neutralized most of the heavy load smoking.

Diesel Fuel Types #1 & #2

Diesel can be had in two primary grades in the D-1 and D-2 and is graded by its cetane number (diesel equivalent of the octane rating of gasoline fuels.) D-2 is the standard, it is less volatile (low evaporation rate, evaporation rate controls the burning rate of any fuel.) and tends to gel at lower temperatures, while D-1 is less viscous and flows better in low temperature conditions. Like gasoline blends, in colder weather alcohol is added for cleaner low temperature operations. Most diesel fuels are a blend of D-1 and D-2 and are mixed to cope with local temperature conditions. Modern electronics, emission controls and fuels standards have eliminated most of negative environmental aspects of diesels. So much for bad and ugly of diesels.

Turbochargers in Diesel Engines

The good news is that most diesels are turbocharged utilizing the heat and kinetic energy of the exhaust gases, normally wasted, to pack a denser charge of air into the engine. As it uses the normally wasted exhaust gases to turn the turbocharger, it increases the efficiency of the engine. A turbocharger will allow an engine to operate efficiently at altitude, Pike’s Peak, down to the sea level California beaches.

Clean Diesel Generators for Sale, Lease or Rent

Another plus. Liquid fuel is sold by volume, gallons in the US and liters abroad. Diesel is denser than gasoline, and thus provides higher energy content per volume than other fuels, extending run times based on a per volume basis. More bang for the buck, so to speak. This is the reason diesel provides better fuel mileage than gasoline engines. Modern engines are the green choice for mobile power generation. Environmental Power Solutions is the leader in mobile large scale, environmentally friendly, electrical power generation, and offers power generation equipment for sale, lease or rent. Contact us today!