In spite of the stringent emission norms and green initiatives, diesel power is projected to remain the dominant technology for heavy machinery operations. This is because of its unique combination of power, performance, efficiency, reliability, durability and availability. Over the years, the off-road diesel engine technology in India has evolved slowly with a steady increase in power density and gradual weight reduction. Diesel engines have greatly increased in power density with similar-sized engines pumping out incredible horsepower and torque with respect to their early counterparts. Fuel injection pressure plays a critical role in off-road diesel engine performance. For this reason, fuel injection pressure has always been a focus and it was increasing long before the introduction of electronics. In the global market, electronic fuel injection was a game changer for the construction equipment industry.
Engines are major source of CO2 emission in off-highway equipment so that it is imperative to take measures of minimising emission level and complying with the required emission norms. Leading players have introduced common rail system in combination with exhaust after treatment in various combinations depending on the market requirements like exhaust gas recirculation (EGR), DOC, DPF and/or SCR to achieve maximum emission compliance.
According to industry input, the diesel engine market in India is approximately 825,000 units. Demand for diesel engines in the off-highway market is expected to grow in future as the market for most equipment is growing. Global engine players are looking positively at Indian market and consolidating presence here. Volvo Penta is delivering engines to Indian manufacturers of mining and construction equipment. While the full range of engines from 5 l to 16 l displacement is powering Indian made machinery, the D5 and D8, made in India, are the most important engine models. DEUTZ offers a broad spectrum of diesel and gas engines in the power range of 19 kW to 620 kW.
At the same time, the engine manufactures face some challenges in the availability of low sulphur fuel and clean fuel (without adulteration). Pre-filters need to be used in engines that can help from these threats. Read the Special Focus for more on diesel engines. Other features and news will provide an overview on the components, accessories and spares.