22 Juli 2005

DaimlerChrysler India to enter new phase of testing Biodiesel

DaimlerChrysler India, which has a Jatropha Biodiesel programme in place, said it would test its cars using the alternate fuel in Leh and other regions of the Himalayas.

“We will further gain valuable feedback about the properties and behaviour of (neat) Biodiesel under extremes of cold, altitude (low pressure) and demanding road conditions. This is, by far, the toughest test, where Biodiesel performance will be pushed to the limits,” DaimlerChrysler India Director (Corporate Affairs and Finance) Suhas Kadlaskar said in a statement here Monday.

The first phase of the project in 2003-04 saw production of the indigenous biodiesel and completion of road trials on two C-Class Mercedes-Benz cars.

The cars, powered by pure (neat) Biodiesel, traversed the rugged terrains of the country in April-May, 2004, and clocked over 5,900 kilometres under very hot and humid conditions.

“The findings of the road trial were utilised for further improvement of the fuel characteristics of Jatropha Bio-diesel,” the company said.

In the new testing phase, DaimlerChrysler plans to test the 2 C-Class Mercedes-Benz cars and an additional Mercedes-Benz Viano (van) across severe and demanding terrain.

“The cold climate-high altitude testing of biodiesel is expected to be carried out from August 6-9,” it said.

Fuel from the bush, jobs in agriculture and sustainable mobility were key objectives of the Jatropha Bio-diesel programme, a project initiated in collaboration with Central Salt and Marine Chemicals Research Institute and the University of Hohenheim.

(Cf. news from March 08, 2005.)

Source: India Daily July 19, 2005.

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