17 October 2006 A portable fuel analyzer
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Fuel is the single most import supply during war. Consider that the US Military is employing over 25,000 vehicles during Operation Iraqi Freedom. Most fuel is obtained locally, and must be characterized to ensure proper operation of these vehicles. Determination of fuel properties is currently determined using a deployed chemical laboratory. Unfortunately, each sample requires in excess of 5 hours to characterize. To overcome this limitation, we have developed a portable fuel analyzer capable of determine 7 fuel properties that allow determining fuel usage. The analyzer uses Raman spectroscopy to measure the fuel samples without preparation in 2 minutes. The challenge, however, is that as distilled fractions of crude oil, all fuels are composed of hundreds of hydrocarbon components that boil at similar temperatures, and performance properties can not be simply correlated to a single component, and certainly not to specific Raman peaks. To meet this challenge, we measured over 500 diesel and jet fuels from around the world and used chemometrics to correlate the Raman spectra to fuel properties. Critical to the success of this approach is laser excitation at 1064 nm to avoid fluorescence interference (many fuels fluoresce) and a rugged interferometer that provides 0.1 cm-1 wavenumber (x-axis) accuracy to guarantee accurate correlations. Here we describe the portable fuel analyzer, the chemometric models, and the successful determination of these 7 fuel properties for over 30 unknown samples provided by the US Marine Corps, US Navy, and US Army.
© (2006) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Wayne Smith and Stuart Farquharson "A portable fuel analyzer", Proc. SPIE 6377, Advanced Environmental, Chemical, and Biological Sensing Technologies IV, 63770E (17 October 2006); doi: 10.1117/12.683004; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.683004

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