Biodiesel the alternative fuel of the future?

Alternative fuels - biodiesel service California

What is Biodiesel? Is it sustainable? And is it cost efficient? These are all very common questions fleet managers, and company owners should be asking when considering the use of biodiesel for their trucks. Renewable and alternative fuel are all the rage these days. Lowering our carbon footprint, and contributing to the longevity of the earth is definitely a great and righteous deed, however the real pursuit of alternative fuels for businesses is to combat the ever-rising prices of fuel and oil. Today we will look into biodiesel and biofuels. We will find out how they are created, their functionality, their accessibility, and help you decide whether biodiesel is the alternative fuel source that your company could best utilize.

Biodiesel is an alternative fuel that is similar in structure and use to standard diesel. Biodiesel is created from animal fat, or vegetable oil through a process called transesterification to separate the glycerin from the base compound. Transesterification leaves behind 2 products, Methyl Esters (which is the chemical name for biodiesel) and glycerin which is a valuable substance, but is not used in the production of fuel. Biofuel is completely non-toxic and 100% biodegradable. Typically, biodiesel produces 60% less net carbon output than standard diesel. The stigma with biodiesel is that it does not carry the same power or fuel efficiency as standard diesel, but studies have shown that the efficiency loss for using biofuel is less than 5%!

 

  Diesel Cooking oil B100 B5
EMISSIONS
Unburned hydrocarbons, ppm 3 14 9 3
Carbon monoxide, % 0 0.01 0 0
NOx, ppm 237 214 248 240
Particulates (opacity %) 2.9 1.6 1.1 2.4
FUEL ECONOMY
City, mpg 20.1 20.8 22.3 22.6
Highway, mpg 44.9 42.1 44.2 48.5
ACCELERATION
0-30 mph, sec. 4.5 4.5 4.5 4.5
0-60 mph, sec. 15 14.9 14.5 14.2
1/4-mile, mph 69.9 70.3 71.3 72.2

Table and data are taken from consumerreports.org

While still in its infancy stages, biodiesel is growing to become one of the top alternative fuel options available today. Finding the best alternative fuel source has become the new search for El Dorado, and as such Europe seems to have doubled down on biofuel. Biodiesel is used by millions of car owners in Europe, particularly in Germany. With a market share of nearly 3% of the German diesel fuel market, biodiesel has become the number one alternative fuel – and its use will certainly continue to grow.

Alternative fuels - biodiesel service California

 

The process of creating these alternative fuels is through a chemical reaction that involves the following

Vegetable Oil + alcohol → biodiesel + Glycerin (Glycerol)

We spoke about it briefly in our opening, but the process of converting vegetable oils into biodiesel is called “Transesterification”. This process is a simple process of combining a chemical compound called an “ester” and an alcohol in order to make another ester, and another alcohol. The vegetable oil used in the process can be substituted with animal fats or any organic compound that are rich in Triglycerides, as they for the reactive base of biodiesel

Did you learn anything useful about alternate fuel or biodiesel? If you would like to learn more about other alternative fuel, the fuel industry, or general topics, then considers subscribing for new content! Or learn more about us at www.scfuels.com

 

Sincerely

-The SC Fuels Team

Tank Monitoring Systems and You.

What are some of the things that you do to make your everyday life easier? Do you set an alarm to wake you up at an early time? Do you have notifications turned on for an app that you use frequently? Do you have a bill set to automatically pay each month, rather than manually paying it? These are all things we do to simplify our modern day human experience. When keeping your workplace running efficiently, having a tool to simplify a task or responsibility is paramount to the success of your project. Fuel Management systems are a tool used help manage the cost, use, and volume of fuel at a workplace.

With the installation of a Fuel Management system, automatic updates and notifications will be uploaded and sent to you and your fuel supplier to ensure that you have fuel when you need, no matter the time. Many companies have not yet made the move to install these devices and service. A good inventory management strategy improves the accuracy of inventory orders, this helps alleviate the stress of inventory management on fleet managers and business owners when making informed purchasing decisions on fuel, ensuring that you are not over, or under spending on your fuel stock.

inventory management systems, tank monitoring system

A good Inventory Management strategy increases efficiency and productivity. The software provided with fuel monitoring systems are created to decrease the amount of time spent on your logistics. Tank management systems can cut down the time you spend on inventory by up to 1/3 by making information very easy to find, and prevent “overfilling” and “Run-outs” all together.

Some of the benefits to installing fuel tank monitoring systems are:

  • Reduced Operating Costs (Hard & Soft Costs)
  • Inventory Management & Fuel Transaction Tracking Services
  • Customized reports (usage, inventory, leak alarm, etc)
  • Prevent “Run Outs” and “Over Fills” – Low inventory alerts
  • Alarm histories/polling reports – Track the course of action to be taken
  • Optimized Fuel purchases – Buying at the right time!
  • Coordination with third party environmental compliance providers & regulators

 

Are you using Fuel tank monitoring systems? Are they working out for you? Let us know in the comments below what your experience has been. If you are interested in knowing more about what fuel tank monitoring systems SC Fuels has available let us know at www.scfuels.com/home/contact/

 

 

Sincerely,

 

-The SC Fuels Team.