Keywords: Kusum oil, preheated oil, vegetable oil, viscosity, energy technology, alternative fuels, emissions, engine performance, heat exchangers, waste heat, diesel engines, biofuel, biodiesel
The performance and emission characteristics of a diesel engine using preheated Kusum oil and Kusum diesel blend
Rapidly depleting conventional petroleum resources have prompted research for alternative fuels. Among various possible options for internal combustion engines, fuels derived from triglycerides (vegetable oils/animal fats) are a promising substitute for diesel fuel. Vegetable oils pose some detrimental characteristics like high viscosity and low volatility compared to diesel fuel. In the present work, experiments were conducted to study the effect of reducing Kusum oil's viscosity by increasing the fuel temperature using exhaust waste heat. A shell and tube heat exchanger was used with the test engine as a retrofit. The acquired data was analysed for engine performance parameters and exhaust emissions. With Kusum oil (preheated and blends), engine performance was found to be close to that of diesel. The preheated oil's slightly poorer performance was due to its low heating value. A voltage drop was marked in the electric generator when engine was running with vegetable oil.