Cummins Inc. announced that the B4.5, B6.7 and L9 engine platforms are compatible with 100% renewable diesel fuels meeting the EN 15940 specification (paraffinic diesel fuel from synthesis or hydrotreatment). Both On-Highway and Off-Highway versions of the B6.7 and L9 platforms and all vintages are approved to use paraffinic diesel fuels in North America.
EN 15940 establishes requirements and test methods for marketed and delivered paraffinic diesel fuel containing a level of up to 7% fatty acid methyl ester (FAME) for use in diesel engines. EN 15940 was approved by CEN, the European Committee for Standardization, in April 2016.
Paraffinic diesel fuels are liquid fuels that can be synthetically created from feedstocks such as natural gas (GTL), biomass (BTL) or coal (CTL); or through hydro-treatment of vegetable oils or animal fats (HVO). These high-quality fuels, with virtually no sulfur and aromatics, burn cleaner than conventional crude-oil-based diesel fuels and are thus able to reduce local harmful emissions such as NOx and particulate matter.
Paraffinic diesel can be used as a blend component in conventional diesel or as a 100% finished fuel, which is already the case in several European markets.
Compared with conventional fossil-based diesel, renewable paraffinic diesel fuels offer the potential to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 40% to 90% over the total life cycle of the vehicle, depending upon the feedstock and the process.
Paraffinic diesel fuels can be used as a 100% substitute for standard EN 590 or ASTM D975 Ultra-Low Sulfur Diesel (ULSD) without requiring any change to the Cummins engine. No additional engine maintenance is required when using paraffinic fuels meeting the EN 15940 specification, and the same fuel filters are retained.
Paraffinic diesel can easily be blended with standard diesel at varying percentages, including winter-grade fuels, and has the same stability and cold properties as conventional diesel, which means it can be used and stored in the same ways.
Cummins led an 18-month field trial running 100% paraffinic diesel fuel in order to understand changes in engine performance, aftertreatment effects and fuel system durability. Engine performance remained stable and consistent while using the paraffinic fuel, and customers should not expect to see any differences. Depending on the application and the engine duty cycle, a fuel economy detriment of 0 to 6 percent is expected due to the lower density of paraffinic fuels compared with regular diesel fuel.
A thorough analysis of the aftertreatment system showed that each subsystem—the Diesel Oxidation Catalyst (DOC), Diesel Particulate Filter (DPF) and Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR)—remained stable throughout the test with performance similar to that of regular diesel fuel. The materials in the fuel system equipment (O-rings, injectors and pumps) are all compatible with EN 15940 diesel fuels.
Operators of Cummins-powered trucks and buses are required to source all paraffinic fuels from high-purity suppliers meeting EN 15940, as this ensures that the fuel contains the necessary lubricity additive for use in a diesel engine.
Other light-duty, heavy-duty and high-horsepower platforms are currently undergoing a similar validation plan on 100% paraffinic fuels, and Cummins will be announcing the results of the studies throughout 2017.