Since Keystone Automotive Operations, a Pennsylvania-based aftermarket auto parts distributor, first started operating a truck using the Prins Dieselblend system in January 2014, the vehicle has traveled over 60,000 miles throughout the Northeast U.S. and Canada.
The Prins Dieselblend technology makes it possible to convert diesel engines to dual-fuel engines that use a portion of either compressed natural gas, liquefied natural gas or propane autogas. In Keystone's case, the company converted its truck to use the latter fuel.
This update on the company's pilot-scale deployment comes from Blossman Services Inc. (BSI), a subsidiary of Blossman Gas. Earlier this year, BSI announced a new U.S. joint venture with BL Energie USA to develop, certify, market and sell diesel displacement systems utilizing the Prins Dieselblend technology for heavy-duty class 7 and 8 trucks.
According to Anthony Diveronica, Keystone's service manager, “The conversion process was easy and trouble free; the truck has performed flawlessly – not even one “check engine' light!”Â
Driver feedback has been positive as well. “Other than a gauge on the dashboard, our drivers can't differentiate when the Dieselblend tractor is substituting propane autogas or not, and fueling has been easy, too,” says Diveronica.
He adds, “Substitution levels of propane to diesel have averaged around 21 percent; however, depending on load, we have seen levels as high as 50 percent.
“The most interesting part of the program is that we have seen the actual substitution to be 1:1, or simply put, one gallon of propane takes the place of 1 gallon of diesel,” continues Diveronica. “And with nearly a $2 per gallon differential in the price of the fuels, the payback is very real.”
Alliance AutoGas, another subsidiary of Blossman Gas, has a bulk dispenser on Keystone's site to fuel the company's light-duty delivery fleet in addition to the newest Dieselblend tractor project.