University of Arkansas, Fayetteville Division of Agriculture


Transient smoke emissions pose potential hazards to human health and the environment. With the increased popularity of biodiesel, there is a need to determine if these fuels produce different levels of particulate matter in exhaust emissions. This study examined the transient smoke emissions of three fuels: No. 2 petroleum diesel fuel (D2, ASTM D 975), a blend of 20% biodiesel and 80% petroleum diesel (B20, ASTM 6751), and a 100% pure biodiesel derived from animal fats (B100, ASTM D 6751). Measurements of smoke emissions were taken using the SAE J1677 snap acceleration test procedure on a John Deere 3203 compact utility tractor. The results indicate there were no statistically significant differences in smoke opacity between the three fuels (p>0.05). The low, non-significant emissions may be due to the diesel engine being EPA Tier II-compliant and the use of ultra-low-sulfur diesel. Recommendations for further study include testing biofuels made of varying feed stocks rather than animal fats, testing steady state load conditions in addition to transient loads, and testing tractors manufactured prior to initiation of EPA tier-compliance standards