Finland-based forestry-industry company UPM, VTT and VV-Auto Group will start fleet tests of renewable diesel produced mainly from crude tall oil, which is a residue of chemical pulp production, UPM BioVerno. (Earlier post.) The biofuel will be produced by UPM, fleet tests will be coordinated by VTT, and cars will be supplied by VV-Auto Group, an importer and marketer of Volkswagen Group cars in Finland. Fleet tests with UPM BioVerno will start in May, lasting several months.
UPM BioVerno diesel has previously been studied in engine and vehicle tests conducted by VTT and others. The fleet tests will focus on investigating UPM renewable diesel in terms of fuel functionality in engine, emissions and fuel consumption.
The fleet tests are a part of a larger project coordinated by VTT. The goal of this project is to encourage companies to commercialise renewable energy solutions in traffic.
Advanced, sustainable biofuels are a great opportunity for Finland. The Commission will most likely restrict the use of biofuel made from food crops, meaning that the value of the forest industry residues will increase. VTT has wide expertise on engines and fuels, which complements UPM's key competence in this project.—Research Professor Nils-Olof Nylund at VTT
Experienced test drivers from VTT will drive UPM BioVerno cars within the Helsinki metropolitan area and collect data for analysis during the 20,000-kilometer (12,000-mile) drive.
The model chosen for the test drive is the Volkswagen Golf 1.6 TDI equipped with DSG automatic transmission.
UPM BioVerno will reduce greenhouse gas emissions caused by traffic by up to 80% when compared with fossil fuels. This high-quality biofuel is produced from residues of the forest industry, with no edible materials being used.
In 2012, UPM began the construction of a biorefinery producing wood-based renewable diesel. This refinery, located in Lappeenranta, Finland, will be completed in 2014. Its production capacity will be 100,000 tonnes equating to 120 million liters (32 million gallons) of renewable diesel a year.