One of the most common types of fuel adopted is diesel fuel. They are used vastly in diesel engine trucks, trains, boats, generators, buses, as well as farm and construction equipment.
Diesel Fuel Price in Kenya
Over the last few years, the price of diesel in Kenya has been rising. This fluctuation is a result of many factors. The cost of crude oil in the international market has risen too because of the tensions in the Middle East. In Kenya, too, there is a current decrease in production.
Furthermore, there has been a massive increase in fuel demand in Kenya. These prices are also different across the cities in the country. The following is the breakdown of diesel fuel prices per liter in Kenya according to some major cities:
- Average retail price == KES 140.00
- Nairobi == KES 140.00
- Mombasa == KES 137.76
- Nauru == KES 139.83
- Eldoret == KES 140.72
- Kisumu == KES 140.70
What is Diesel Fuel?
A lot of experiments have been conducted on Diesel fuel over the years with various approaches to find a diesel fuel that produces clean combustion as well as reduced NOx emissions.
Diesel fuel is any liquid fuel made either from the refractive distillation of crude oil, carbonaceous materials, petroleum, biomass, biogas, natural gas, or animal fat. It is used mainly for diesel engines. They have specifications like cetane number, density, fuel volatility, viscosity, sulfur content, and it is cold on the skin.
Diesel Fuel Grades
As aforementioned, diesel fuel specifications are different for various fuel grades. The varieties of diesel fuel grades are listed below based on MPG levels, pour point, and viscosity.
- Grade 1
They are less viscous and have a low pour point. The reason for this occurrence is the extraction of paraffin wax, which subjects diesel fuel to form a gel during cold weather. Furthermore, they are best used in low temperatures.
- Grade 2
They are the opposite of grade 1 diesel fuel. They have higher viscosity and pour point. The presence of paraffin wax makes it vulnerable to harden up during low temperatures. They are regarded as the most powerful grade of diesel fuel. It possesses high MPG, cetane numbers, and octane numbers.
- Grade 4-D
They incorporate heavy distillate fuel or a blend of residual oil and distillate fuel. They consist of a relatively high cetane rate of 40.
Properties of Diesel Fuel
- Heat Value
They produce a large amount of energy when burned. They have a heat value of 125,500 BTUs, 139,500 BTUs, and 124,500 BTUs for Grade 1, Grade 2, and Grade 4-FD diesel fuel.
- Cane number
Cane number is also known as ignition quality. They ignite and burn with ease. They comprise a cane rating of 100 and a lag time of approximately 0.001 seconds. Grade 1 diesel fuel has a 51- 53 cane rating, while Grade 2 has a 46 – 48 cane rating.
They have a viscosity that is influenced by temperature. They are thicker during low temperatures and less thick in high temperatures.
- Sulfur Content
They have traces of hydrogen sulfide; when combined with sulfur dioxide during combustion causes wear on diesel engine parts like piston, rings, valves, and cylinders.
- Carbon Residue
They have carbon residues after burning, which is easily identified by the black and sooty nature.
- Flash Point
They have high or low flash points depending on the grade of diesel fuel. Flashpoint is the minimum temperature at which diesel fuel is heated before flammable vapor is elicited.
They are corrosive when they react with bronze, brass, or copper components of fuel. Corrosion is measured by dipping a clean copper strip into the fuel for a time frame of 3 hours at boiling temperature.
They beget deposits of abrasive solids and soluble metallic soap that causes ash to form in diesel fuel. Ash is measured by burning a measured amount of fuel in an open crucible until the carbon deposits in it are expended.
They produce more volatility depending on the varying number of carbon deposits.
- Pour Point
Pour point is measured by the presence or absence of paraffin wax in diesel fuel. However, not all grades possess this feature. Paraffin wax is only present in Grade 2 and Grade 4-D diesel fuel.