The first fleet tests of UPM’s BioVerno renewable diesel have shown that the fuel works in cars just as well as any conventional petroleum diesel. The fleet tests, conducted by the VTT Technical Research Center of Finland, were started in May last year and ran until early 2014. (Earlier post.)
The UPM BioVerno diesel fleet tests focused on investigating UPM’s renewable diesel in terms of fuel functionality in engine and fuel consumption. The tests were conducted with a fuel blend including 20% UPM BioVerno and 80% fossil diesel. With this blend fuel consumption matched the consumption of fossil diesel.
The fleet tests showed the same as the previous engine and vehicle tests—renewable diesel UPM BioVerno is working exactly like any regular diesel. The results were according to our expectations, because our renewable diesel echoes fossil diesel also in its chemical structure, unlike first generation biodiesels.—Petri Kukkonen, Vice President, UPM Biofuels
Experienced test drivers from VTT drove new Volkswagen Golf 1.6 TDI cars, provided by the VV-Auto Group, and gathered data for analysis during an altogether 80,000-kilometer (50,000-mile) test drive with four cars.
The study included measurements in the laboratory at the beginning of the test and after 20,000 kilometers (12,400 miles) of driving. The approximately 20,000-kilometer test drive length was chosen based on the fact that, in Finland, the average yearly distance driven with cars is 17,000 kilometers (10,600 miles). Analysis work at VTT was headed by Principal Scientist Juhani Laurikko.
We studied UPM BioVerno diesel in various conditions: summer and winter weathers as well as on city roads and longer drives. The length of the drives varied from a few kilometres to several hundreds of kilometers on the road, just like real life situations. The engines of the test cars were working excellently in all conditions during the full length of the fleet testing.—Juhani Laurikko
Fleet testing of UPM BioVerno diesel will continue, together with VTT, using buses in the Helsinki metropolitan area in late 2014.
UPM’s renewable diesel BioVerno is produced from residues of the forest industry, with no food materials being used. In 2012, UPM began the construction of the first biorefinery producing wood-based renewable diesel. This refinery, located in Lappeenranta, Finland, will be completed this year. Its production capacity will be 100,000 tonne—120 million liters (31.7 millions gallons US) of renewable diesel a year.