Biodiesel from recycled cooking oil takes to the race-track

The FIA (Federation Internationale De L’Automobile) has announced that biodiesel used in a blend of mineral and biodiesel is now a legitimate fuel for use in Motorsport.

This means that diesel fuels are finally coming of age as a serious alternative for use in motor racing. As technology improves and diesel engines become more powerful racing teams may switch to diesel power benefiting from lower fuel weight as a result of better fuel efficiency.

Biodiesel apparently acts as an oxygenator and (especially when used in a blend) can increase performance and fuel efficiency. The new rules will allow the use of upto 5 per cent biodiesel in a blend with ordinary mineral diesel. At this percentage it is possible to achieve up to 5 per cent better efficiency, which is a significant step forward in motor racing terms.

As a result of the FIA decision Rix BioDiesel Ltd are now able to confirm a sponsorship deal with Redline Truck Racing. The team are currently competing in the British and European Championships and will use Rix Bio Blend 5 for all remaining races this year and in the teams fleet of support vehicles.

Rory Clarke, MD of Rix Biodiesel said: “The use of diesel in road going cars is also growing and with big players such as Peugeot and Vauxhall exploring the possibility of producing diesel sports cars, the future for biodiesel looks rosy.”

The FIA believes that a substantial contribution can be made to the emissions performance of all cars – both new and old – by using cleaner fuels. They state that reductions are necessary in levels of sulphur and poly-aromatics for diesel fuels. Oxides of sulphur emissions from biodiesel are at least 80 per cent lower than those of low sulphur fossil diesel and are comparable or lower than those of ULSD.

Biodiesel is the only ‘drop-in fuel’ replacement for existing fuel types and has many benefits for the user. It can be used alone as 100 per cent biodiesel, or in a 95 per cent mineral diesel / 5 per cent biodiesel blend.

This has the added benefit of improving the lubrication of the engine and in turn boosting the fuel economy of the vehicle by up to 5 per cent.

Environmentally, Rix Biodiesel also has benefits. Manufactured from used cooking oils, Rix BioDiesel is one of only a few fuels produced from a completely renewable source which means that used oils can be recycled as biodiesel rather than being put into landfill sites. Emissions are also cut drastically whether drivers use pure biodiesel or a blend of mineral and biodiesel.

Available at almost 100 forecourt locations throughout England and Scotland, Rix Biodiesel is currently sold as a blended diesel product known as Bio Blend 5. Offering significantly lower exhaust gas emissions and up to 5 per cent increase in fuel efficiency the fuel is growing in popularity with diesel motorists.

Life-cycle emissions of greenhouse gases from biodiesel are 55 per cent lower than those of fossil diesel and emissions of Carbon Monoxide from biodiesel are, on average, 40 per cent lower than CO emissions from mineral diesel. Nitrogen Oxides emissions from biodiesel are comparable to those from ULSD and can be reduced further by adjustment to the engine’s timing.

Volatile Organic Compounds emissions from biodiesel are 55 per cent lower than low sulphur fossil diesel. It is claimed to be less toxic than table salt, less irritating to the skin than soap and the flash point is approximately 151 Celsius – around 100 degrees higher than that of ordinary fossil diesel. It biodegrades by 91 per cent in the first 21 days – the same rate as dextrose and four to five times faster than mineral diesel. It can also be used as a solvent to clean up mineral diesel spills and will not harm sensitive areas such as agricultural land and inland waterways.


Ano da Publicação: 2003
Fonte: WARMER BULLETIN ENEWS #26-2003: August 29, 2003
Autor: Kit Strange, Warmer Bulletin
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