Ethanol is considered as a potential biofuel for blending with gasoline and, in India, it is planned to increase the ethanol content to 20 percent in gasoline by year 2025 from present allowable limit of maximum 10 percent. It is important to evaluate the impact of E20 fuel on the materials used in fuel-system components. An evaluation of 8 metals, 6 elastomers and 4 plastics used in various fuel-system components was conducted through systematic exercise of laboratory immersion following standard methods like SAE J1747 and SAE J 1748 with all the quality and quality assurance measures. The study was conducted with E20 as test fuel and commercial gasoline (BS IV) as a baseline fuel for comparative assessment. Impact of E20 on metals was evaluated through calculation of corrosion rates in mm/year based on data obtained for change in mass post-immersion in above fuels. Similarly, impact of elastomers and plastics was evaluated through observed changes in properties like mass, volume, tensile strength, elongation, impact strength and hardness.
Impact of E20 on metals tested was found to be insignificant based on the corrosion rates. Polychloroprene, SBR, HNBR and Fluoroelastomer were found to perform similar or better in most of the properties with E20. Impact of E20 on NBR-PVC and Epichlorohydrin was more as compared to commercial gasoline. Similar changes in properties of PA12, PBT and Acetal were observed in both the fuels. Impact of E20 on tensile strength and volume change properties of PA66 was found to be more than commercial gasoline. The vital information generated can be utilised by design engineers for selection, modification of materials for various components of fuel-system of vehicles
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