If Missouri is the “Show Me” state, then trucking is surely the “Show Me” industry. In this business, things new are generally handled with cautious reluctance, as though picking up a rattlesnake with the end of a stick, and skepticism is worn like a Medal of Honor. We doubt; therefore we survive.
Clint Capurro, owner and president of Capurro Trucking, Elko, NV, is no exception. So when Emissions Technology, Inc. (www.emissions tech. com) came to him with a new combustion catalyst device for diesel engines that they said could reduce engine wear, lower exhaust emissions and perhaps even improve fuel efficiency, he said, “You have to prove to me that it will really work.”
“I have fifty trucks in this fleet,” says Capurro. “We haul huge loads, including gold ore and other aggregates, with dumps, triple transfers and flatbeds. We gross 109,000 lb., and we pull those loads up steep grades, some 20%. As a test, we installed Emissions Technology's Diesel Catalyst-100 system (DC-100) on ten of our new Peterbilt 379s.
“The Pete's all have 500 horsepower Caterpillar 3406 engines,” he explains. “We put them on a CAT dynamometer before and after 300-plus hours of testing and we saw some impressive data. The drop in smoke opacity was very significant and so was the increase in miles per gallon. As a result, I've ordered DC-100s for every truck in the fleet. We are going to test the system for a year to validate what we are seeing now. I really think this technology is the wave of the future.”
Dan Shearer, transportation director for the Scottsdale Unified School District, has a similar story to tell. “We put the DC-100 system on seven of our International school buses about 18 months ago,” he says. “We have a dynamometer and a four-gas analyzer, so we've been doing our own testing. Our particulate emissions have dropped 40% and the buses are using an average of 9.6% less diesel fuel. At idle, we went from 1.4 gal./hr. to 0.95-0.91 gal./hr.
“There have been absolutely no engine wear or maintenance issues during the test; I expect to see less wear not more,” he continues. “We're testing the unit on two more buses now and have applied for an EPA grant on the basis of this technology. I'm a real skeptic, but these results are too compelling to ignore.”
Oddly enough, people at Emissions Technology would be the last to rave about their DC-100 device, preferring instead to talk about the technology and let the results speak for themselves. “Rather than treating the symptoms of pollution at the exhaust stage, the DC-100 is designed to address the core problem of unburned fuel at the combustion stage,” says Troy Bohlke, a company founder. “Basically, it works by introducing a diesel catalyst as an aerosol into the air intake system of the engine, resulting in a more efficient fuel burn.”
The device is designed to also work on stationary diesel engines, just ask Erich Barmann, owner of Southwest Laser, a custom crushing business headquartered in New Mexico. “One of our crushers is powered by a 750 kW generator with a CAT 3412 engine,” he says. “We were already using an aftermarket oil and fuel filtration system when we added the DC-100 — both sourced through OMO Equipment in Albuquerque. Our engine data show that particulate emissions have dropped 23%, hydrocarbons 60% ,oxides of nitrogen 20%, and fuel usage 28%. The DC-100 paid for itself in six weeks.”
Based on reports like these, the “Show Me” industry may really have something new to watch. Of course, you will have to judge for yourself.