WSF Biodiesel Demonstration Project Final Report

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In 2004, WSF canceled a biodiesel fuel test because of “product quality issues” that caused the fuel purifiers to clog. The cancelation of this test and the poor results negatively impacted the use of biodiesel in marine application in the Pacific Northwest. In 2006, The U.S. Department of Energy awarded the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency a grant to manage a scientific study investigating appropriate fuel specifications for biodiesel, fuel handling procedures and to conduct a fuel test using biodiesel fuels in WSF operations. The Agency put together a project team comprised of experts in fields of biodiesel research and ... continued below

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University, Washington State; Idaho, University of; The Glosten Associates, Inc. & Imperium Renewables, Inc. April 30, 2009.

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Description

In 2004, WSF canceled a biodiesel fuel test because of “product quality issues” that caused the fuel purifiers to clog. The cancelation of this test and the poor results negatively impacted the use of biodiesel in marine application in the Pacific Northwest. In 2006, The U.S. Department of Energy awarded the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency a grant to manage a scientific study investigating appropriate fuel specifications for biodiesel, fuel handling procedures and to conduct a fuel test using biodiesel fuels in WSF operations. The Agency put together a project team comprised of experts in fields of biodiesel research and analysis, biodiesel production, marine engineering and WSF personnel. The team reviewed biodiesel technical papers, reviewed the 2004 fuel test results, designed a fuel test plan and provided technical assistance during the test. The research reviewed the available information on the 2004 fuel test and conducted mock laboratory experiments, but was not able to determine why the fuel filters clogged. The team then conducted a literature review and designed a fuel test plan. The team implemented a controlled introduction of biodiesel fuels to the test vessels while monitoring the environmental conditions on the vessels and checking fuel quality throughout the fuel distribution system. The fuel test was conducted on the same three vessels that participated in the canceled 2004 test using the same ferry routes. Each vessel used biodiesel produced from a different feedstock (i.e. soy, canola and yellow grease). The vessels all ran on ultra low sulfur diesel blended with biodiesel. The percentage of biodiesel was incrementally raised form from 5 to 20 percent. Once the vessels reached the 20 percent level, they continued at this blend ratio for the remainder of the test. Fuel samples were taken from the fuel manufacturer, during fueling operations and at several points onboard each vessel. WSF Engineers monitored the performance of the fuel systems and engines. Each test vessel did experience a microbial growth bloom that produced a build up of material in the fuel purifiers similar to material witnessed in the 2004 fuel test. A biocide was added with each fuel shipment and the problem subsided. In January of 2009, the WSF successfully completed an eleven month biodiesel fuel test using approximately 1,395,000 gallons of biodiesel blended fuels. The project demonstrated that biodiesel can be used successfully in marine vessels and that current ASTM specifications are satisfactory for marine vessels. Microbial growth in biodiesel diesel interface should be monitored. An inspection of the engines showed no signs of being negatively impacted by the test.

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  • Report No.: DOEGO86032
  • Grant Number: FG36-06GO86032
  • DOI: 10.2172/960292 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 960292
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc928725

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  • April 30, 2009

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Nov. 13, 2016, 7:26 p.m.

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University, Washington State; Idaho, University of; The Glosten Associates, Inc. & Imperium Renewables, Inc. WSF Biodiesel Demonstration Project Final Report, report, April 30, 2009; United States. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc928725/: accessed October 18, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.