ALEXANDRIA, Va. – As new high pressure common rail diesel engines have increased their share of the U.S. market, there has been an increase in reports of engine breakdowns and failures presumably related to diesel fuel quality. While some assert a causal versus a coincidental relationship between the two, there has yet to exist a conclusive answer as to why diesel fuel injectors, filters and other engine parts are breaking down with seemingly greater frequency. The Fuel Institute today announced the formation of the Fuel Quality Council (FQC), a non-biased, cross-industry collaborative initiative aimed at better understanding the issue and evaluating potential solutions. Details can be found at www.fuelsinstitute.org/fqc.
“The Fuels Institute is designed to facilitate cross-industry collaboration to better understand what is happening in the fuels and vehicles market,” said Fuels Institute Executive Director John Eichberger. “The concerns relating to engine performance and diesel fuel quality represent an opportunity for the industries—on the fuels, vehicles and engines sides—to come together to share knowledge, evaluate available data and seek greater understanding of the existing challenges and possible solutions available in the heavy-duty market. The Fuel Quality Council provides the mechanism for such collaboration to be successful.”
The FQC will engage in engine maintenance data collection, fuel sampling analysis and research initiatives as directed by the General Council and Steering Committee, to better understand the scope and nature of issues. The founding members of the FQC include:
- Afton Chemical Company
- Center for Quality Assurance
- Detroit Diesel Corporation
- Donaldson Company
- Innospec Fuel Specialties
- Kum & Go
- Loves Travel Stops
- Mansfield Oil Company
- Pilot Flying J
- Seneca Companies
- Vulcan Materials Company
- National Biodiesel Board
- Steel Tank Institute
FQC’s core mission includes:
- Eliminating silos by bringing together diverse stakeholders in the diesel fuel and engine supply chain and facilitating collaboration among these entities;
- Reviewing current research and literature to identify gaps in knowledge and develop a plan to contribute value to the knowledge base;
- Benchmarking fuel quality by working with engine manufacturers to understand the optimum specifications for diesel fuel and develop a model to compare diesel fuel quality in North America to that in other countries;
- Mapping the relationship between fuel quality and engine problems by comparing maintenance data with the fuel quality benchmark;
- Evaluating the entire fuel supply and distribution system from nozzle to refiner to identify potential sources of the problem; and
- Determining whether potential solutions to any diesel engine-fuel problems will yield a return on investment and the value of taking such steps to address the problem(s).
General Council members are responsible for developing the research objectives of the FQC, serving on working groups, guiding and reviewing all findings and reports, and contributing market data for analysis in research projects. As the governing body of the FQC, the Steering Committee manages the budget, oversees all operations, contracts with outside research entities and grants final approval to release findings and reports.
The Fuel Quality Council is currently seeking new members for both the General Council and Steering Committee. The goals of the FQC cannot be achieved without diverse input from all stakeholders in the industry. To get involved, or for more information, please contact Amanda Appelbaum, director of research, at 703-518-7974 or firstname.lastname@example.org.