The Groundsman

November 2014

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AWARD SPONSOR PROFILE 21 the Groundsman November 2014 Visit www.iog.org for more information and digital editions The benefits Probably the main benefit is that these modern engines are controlled electronically, so that they react more responsively. Take, for example, our recently launched Ransomes MP653 batwing rotary mower. Now the engine is digitally controlled it can interface with the chassis controllers facilitating 'drive- by-wire' and cruise control as well as allowing the mowing speed and transport speeds to be adjusted and set using a password. There are three selectable drive modes: Automatic which incorporates a fuel saving system that automatically idles the engine at appropriate times, reducing fuel consumption and an electronic interface which maintains the quality of cut when the engine is under maximum load. A Creep mode disables the cutting units and limits the transport speed to 8 km/h, ideal for manoeuvring in tight areas and a Manual mode, where all of the automatic functions are disabled and the mower reacts and drives like a standard machine. The implications Probably the most significant change, from the users' point of view, will now have to include more diligent attention to the engine. This will mean that the EGR cooler and hose/piping system has to be inspected every 1,500 engine hours, and every 3,000 engine hours the DPF has to be removed and professionally cleaned or replaced. Fuel filters are being fitted that are working down to 2 microns - that's two thousandths of a millimetre – and will need to be changed frequently. The good news is that the engine efficiency is more likely to be maintained. Common Rail diesel engines require Ultra Low Sulphur diesel with a sulphur content of less than 15 parts per million and with less than 0.05 per cent moisture content. This will require end users to be more particular about the fuel they are buying and how they store and filter it, especially with regard to moisture build up. As stated above, with filters working at two microns, they could become blocked by even low levels of contamination. Fuel management Low grade fuel creates more soot, which has the potential to block the DPF filters in the exhaust. These DPF filters are cleaned by a process called re-gen (by adding fuel directly to the hot exhaust to burn off the soot), but low grade fuel will reduce engine performance, the DPF/DCF units' operating life and potentially, the operating life of the engine itself. The issue which complicates this further is biodiesel. Biodiesel absorbs more moisture from the atmosphere, and this, together with the bio content provides a breeding environment for bacteria, which produce moulds and a slime-like growth in the fuel, blocking the filters. To prevent the likelihood of this occurring, fuel held in storage tanks should be turned over regularly - at least two or three times a year. Purchasing smaller quantities of fuel, more regularly, would be an alternative. Storage tanks may also need cleaning and regular fuel inspections to test for moisture content and contamination levels. Conclusion As manufacturers, we have had to comply with the new regulations. The benefits these new engines bring in terms of cleanliness, functionality and controllability enable us to provide added benefits to the end-user. Going forward we will see even cleaner engines and that will bring greater benefits as we work to protect the environment. l Richard Comely is responsible for the introduction of new products. He heads a team of specialist product managers in both Ipswich, UK and Charlotte, NC in the USA About the Author Users will have to be more diligent with engines - undertaking frequent inspections as well as regular cleaning and component replacement Going forward we will see even cleaner engines and that will bring greater benefits as we work to protect the environment " "

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