Filtration plays a major role in preventing the contaminants entering the engine system, thus safeguarding the whole machine from breakdown.
Water or particulates can cause microscopic surface damage that is then focused on by the high-pressure fuel flow, which causes wear that will eventually lead to reduced efficiency and complete breakdown. With this in mind, managing fuel delivery and system cleanliness through proper filtration becomes an absolute imperative for economical engine operation. A filter helps maintain the engine and equipment life by removing the smallest of dirt particles which could lead to defunct of fuel injection systems and other critical components. Filtration systems having water separation capabilities also help in separating water and other contaminants that could lead to corrosion in the equipment.
Filter vis-a-vis productivity of equipment
An electronic control unit (ECU) usually raises the fuel pressure to compensate using various sensors to direct the injector to open longer and in result dump excess fuel out. The air filter is also important to the efficiency of the engine because of the need for air. The engine of an automobile requires a flow of fresh air coming into the system. What happens is that the air will mix with the gasoline to create the energy spark that puts the wheels in motion. The right amount of air mixed with the gasoline improves performance considerably. Air filters make certain that the intake of fresh air does not contain any debris. This includes dust, pollutants, and other particles that can cause problems within the engine. Clean air mixes well with the gasoline and generates a higher kmpl. As the air filter becomes increasingly more clogged by use, it begins to obstruct air going into the engine. To compensate for the decreased amount of air, the engine must work harder and will consequently expend more gasoline. This results in lower kmpl and higher costs at the fuel pump. The economy realised by a clean air filter and fuel filter are reasons enough to periodically change it.
Emerging technology trends
The future of the diesel engine relies on increasingly stringent exhaust emission requirements, while the quality of diesel fuel continues on a worldwide decline. New diesel engines require extraordinary fuel cleanliness and freedom from water contamination to meet these requirements. Ultra-low sulphur diesel (ULSD) and the rapidly expanding use of biodiesel pose new filtration challenges due to their tendency to dissolve existing deposits, absorb water, and support the growth of bacteria. Even cold weather operation is compromised by the new fuels, leading to downtime and problems on an increasing frequency. With India moving to BS-VI norms, will lead to improvements in fuel injection timing and addition of a gasoline particle filter for gasoline direct injection (GDI) engines. The change in norms will also lead to control of crankcase emission norms leading to closing crankcase ventilation systems and routing of gases into air intake systems. A major shift amongst Indian customers has been towards longer life filters that would reduce in service intervals and auto drain solutions.
Filtration in construction and mining equipment
With respect to construction and mining machinery, the requirements of the OEM and end customers are not heavily focused on low cost options. Cost might be one of the factors but more focus is given towards ensuring equipment safety, minimum downtimes, longer maintenance intervals, quick changeovers etc. This brings in a quality perspective in the solutions being derived for filtration systems. We see this trend also coming into commercial vehicles space with the rapidly changing and more stringent norms coming into play.
With the current government's focus on infrastructure development and growth, we see heavy investments flowing into the construction space. The demand for construction equipment and commercial vehicles are on a high and we expect this growth to continue this coming year. Also, with the controlled opening of the mining industry, we see a growth in mining equipment as well going forward.