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FPT Industrial Is Investigating Plant-Based Biofuels

Published 03-04-20

Submitted by CNH Industrial

FPT Industrial is working with a range of academic institutions in Brazil to develop possible biodiesel from palm trees.

 FPT Industrial a global powertrain brand of CNH Industrial N.V. (NYSE: CNHI/ MI: CNH),  invested in a production plan and tests dedicated to exploring macaúba biodiesel, with a view to developing a potential new source of sustainable fuel.

Macaúba, a native palm tree to Brazil, the Caribbean and South Florida is a multipurpose plant that can be used in construction, medical and the cosmetic industries. Recently, it’s use in the production of biodiesel is being investigated.

The research was conducted at the Technical Center in Betim, Southeast of Brazil, with the main focus on its application as a fuel for agricultural tractors. Tests for trucks and buses, as well as power generators, are planned for the future.  The macaúba oil used in the tests was extracted by Cooper Riachão, a rural producers cooperative in the region of Montes Claros, in Minas Gerais state. Following that, biodiesel was produced in an experimental plant by means of transesterification - a chemical reaction used to obtain biodiesel -  and met the standards established by the National Agency of Petroleum, Natural Gas and Biofuels (ANP).

The project was carried out in partnership with the Pontifical Catholic University of Minas Gerais (PUC Minas), the Federal University of Minas Gerais (UFMG) and Bchem Biofuels, using a FPT Industrial N67 Tier 3 engine fitted to Case IH and New Holland Agriculture tractors.  During the tests, mixtures of 10% and 20% of Macaúba biodiesel were used. The results showed performance and consumption comparable to Brazilian commercial diesel, with a reduction trend in terms of carbon monoxide (CO) and particulate matter (PM) emissions. This is further  evidence of FPT Industrial’s commitment to exploring innovative sustainable fuels which could yield positive benefits.

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CNH Industrial is a global leader in the capital goods sector with established industrial experience, a wide range of products and a worldwide presence. Each of the individual brands belonging to the Company is a major international force in its specific industrial sector: Case IH, New Holland Agriculture and STEYR for tractors and agricultural machinery; CASE Construction Equipment and New Holland Construction for earth moving equipment; IVECO for commercial vehicles; IVECO BUS and Heuliez Bus for buses and coaches; IVECO ASTRA for quarry and construction vehicles; Magirus for firefighting vehicles; Iveco Defence Vehicles for defence and civil protection; and FPT Industrial for engines and transmissions.

Sustainability at CNH Industrial
CNH Industrial has a proactive approach to sustainability, which is in tune with global changes. We have set long-term targets to align with the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals and we are driven to ensure that our footprint is sustainable, and one that leaves a positive and lasting impression. Furthermore, CNH Industrial is a recognized as a sustainability leader in its field, having been named as the Industry Leader in the Machinery and Electrical Equipment segment of the Dow Jones Sustainability Indices (DJSI), World and Europe, for nine consecutive years, as well as being admitted to range of sustainability indices.

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