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Fuel Regulations

USA: Fuels: Certification Fuels

1994 Model Year Vehicles

Federal (EPA) and California fuel specifications for emission certification of model year (MY) 1994 and later highway engines and vehicles is shown in Table 1.

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California regulations allow manufacturers to certify engines/vehicles using the EPA certification fuel. Alternately, California specifies its own test fuel of somewhat better quality and, thus, resulting in lower emissions. Manufacturers are generally allowed to use the California fuel for those vehicle types and model years where California emissions regulations are more stringent than the federal regulations. In cases when California and federal emission standards are identical, manufacturers may be required to use the EPA fuel for California certification testing.

Table 1
US and California Certification Diesel Fuel for 1994 and Later MY Vehicles
Fuel Property Unit Specification Test†
Federal California
Cetane Number (natural)   42-50 47-55 D613
Distillation Range °F     D86; 13 CCR §2282(g)(3)
  IBP 340-400 340-420
  10% point 400-460 400-490
  50% point 470-540 470-560
  90% point 560-630 550-610
  EP 610-690 580-660
API Gravity   32-37 33-39 D287
Total Sulfur % (wt.) 0.03-0.05 0.01-0.05 D2622; 13 CCR §2282(g)(3)
Nitrogen content (max) ppmw   100-500 13 CCR §2282(g)(3)
Total Aromatic Hydrocarbons % (vol.) 27 (min) 8-12 D1319; 13 CCR §2282(g)(3)
Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons % (wt.)   1.4 (max)  
Flashpoint (min) °F 130 130 D93
Viscosity @ 40°F mm2/s 2.0-3.2 2.0-4.1 D445
† ASTM standards and/or California Title 13, CCR procedures

The EPA specification also allows the following non-metallic fuel additives in certification fuels: cetane improvers, anti-oxidants, dehazers, metal deactivators, anti-corrosion, pour depressants, dyes, dispersants, biocides.