Ford's Transit vans run on green fuel made from cooking oil

Monday, Feb 24, 2020 18:51

US automaker Ford has recently approved the use of hydro-treated vegetable oil (HVO) in its Transit vans.

This renewable diesel fuel is based on waste oils, including used cooking oil that can be sourced from restaurants, takeaways, and even kitchens at home, the company said.

The use of HVO, or renewable diesel, in place of conventional fossil fuels can contribute to improvements in air quality.

Greenhouse gases can be reduced by up to 90 per cent compared with regular diesel. Vehicles run on HVO emit less NOx and particulates than other diesel vehicles because the fuel contains no sulphur or oxygen, the company said.

Commercial companies across Europe collect used cooking oil from restaurants, caterers and schools.

“Enabling our vans to run on fuel made from waste, including used cooking oil, may sound far-fetched but using HVO is, in fact, a very real way in which Transit drivers and fleet operators will soon be able to help everyone enjoy improved air quality,” said Hans Schep, general manager for Commercial Vehicles for Ford in Europe.

Additionally, HVO, which also incorporates waste animal fats and fish oil, helps diesel engines start more easily in low temperatures. The creation process, using hydrogen as a catalyst, means HVO is both cleaner-burning than conventional biodiesels and has a longer shelf life.

Ford thoroughly tested HVO in its 2.0-litre EcoBlue engine to make sure no modifications would be needed, and servicing would not be affected. No further development of the fuel was needed before it could be used in Ford’s latest Transit vans.

HVO is on sale at selected fuel stations in Europe, mainly in Scandinavia and the Baltic states, where it can be offered in a pure form, or as a blend with regular diesel. — VNS

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