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Technical Committee Fuel Oils

Limitation of Microbial Degradation of Middle Distillates

Microorganisms can colonize fuels and cause failures due to corrosion and filter blockages. In the project, investigations were carried out on various influences on microbial growth. Differences between different fuel oils could be identified and justified by composition. The proportions of monoaromatics and nitrogen each have an influence on the microbes. The influence of various alternative components could also be quantified. Oxymethylene ether and paraffinic components lower microbial growth, while fatty acid methyl esters can increase it. In gasoline, ethanol can reduce growth. In addition to classical batch approaches, a passive dosing method could also be established, with which the same statements on growth can be made more quickly. The system test carried out for distribution in a simulated burner system showed that it is essential to avoid aspiration of the water phase by means of a suitable design. Recommendations have been compiled at the end of the report on how microbial growth can be avoided and delayed. 

The IGF project (20840 N) of the research association DGMK Deutsche Wissenschaftliche Gesellschaft für nachhaltige Energieträger, Mobilität und Kohlenstoffkreisläufe e.V., Große Elbstraße 131, 22767 Hamburg, Germany, was funded by the Federal Ministry of Economics and Climate Protection via the AiF within the framework of the program for the promotion of joint industrial research (IGF) on the basis of a resolution of the German Bundestag.

iAMB Institute for Applied Microbiology RWTH Aachen University
Dr. Maximilian J. Surger, Prof. Dr. Lars M. Blank
Institute for Environmental Research RWTH Aachen
Katharina Mayer, Dr. Felix Stibany, Prof. Dr. Andreas Schäffer
OWI Science for Fuels gGmbH affiliated Institute of the RWTH Aachen
Karin Engeländer, Sebastian Feldhoff, Dr. Wilfried Plum
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