*Reduce fluids labor costs by 80%
*Faster fuel lane turnover
*Eliminate overfill spills & occupational exposures
*Improve facility safety & hygiene
*100% capture & use of fuel you have paid for
Refueling Vapor Recovery in the United States
Petroleum Equipment & Technology Article by:
Wolf H. Loch, Ph.D.
The recovery of refueling vapors at the service station is a two-stage process: Stage I vapor recovery returns gasoline vapors from the service station’s underground tank system back to the tanker truck during product delivery (see Figure 1). Stage II vapor recovery collects vapors (see Figure 2) from the vehicle fuel tank during refueling and returns them to the underground tank. Figure 3 provides an overview of the two processes and shows the magnitude of refueling emissions.
In absolute terms, data for 1996 shows a nationwide gasoline consumption of more than 120 billion gallons. Uncontrolled refueling emissions would have been more than 0.5 million tons, which is equivalent to about 140 million gallons of gasoline.
Authored by: Christopher J. Hollerback
Copyright © 2007 SAE International
Closed-loop refueling is an evolutionary dispensing method designed for the rapid and environmentally secure filling of vehicles equipped with single or multiple fuel tanks. The principle is based on the utilization of high-pressure fuel flow in conjunction with an equal amount of vacuum under positive mechanical connection. This retrofit system connects, dispenses, and disconnects while containing virtually 100% of raw fuel and hydrocarbon-laden vapor to avoid small-volume releases. This is achieved through a single-connection dispensing gun to a mating receiver assembly mounted on the refueling vehicle.
Exploring an evolutionary method of fluid transfer designed to attain maximum resource utilization through enhanced environmental and labor efficiencies by way of positive mechanical connection. In commercial fleet maintenance operations, such as vehicle refueling, the objective is to maximize resources (e.g. labor and commodity products in the form of fuel and other essential fluids) in the most cost-effective and efficient manner. This is balanced with the need to be environmentally responsible in the process. The time required to replenish fuel is currently regulated by maximum gallons per minute (GPM) established to safely manage and limit potential fluid releases and varies by product for the specific application. Gasoline dispensing is regulated to a standard of 10 GPM while the less volatile diesel fuels, commonly dispensed in larger quantities and to more tanks than gasoline, is permitted at 30 GPM. Both fuels are assumed to be handled under safe practices and monitored to ensure that the product goes where it is intended - into the fuel tanks.
The potential for “small-volume release” (spills) commonly arises when maintenance personnel are tasked with additional checks that divert attention from the refueling process to focus on other maintenance items. One such task includes additional fluid checks like oil level, washer solvent, and coolant. Physical inspections are also required ranging from belt tension to battery checks and tire pressures. These seemingly simple tasks that enable vehicles to remain in service can easily become overlooked due to the number of units within large fleets, and the pressure for personnel to return each vehicle to the road in an expedited manner.
By combining tasks and safely increasing fuel flow rates through closed loop fueling, it is perceived that greater efficiencies can be realized in a cost-effective and environmentally sound manner during the refueling process.