MAN regeneration 04 June 2014

As Euro 6 slips quietly into regular haulage work, fleet engineers in the petroleum delivery sector need extra reassurance. Ian Norwell reports

MAN's domination of the 'pet reg' tanker chassis sector – the truck manufacturer has a commanding 80% share of forecourt distribution – has led to some early action on DPF (diesel particulate filter) regeneration control. Why? Because, although the sector is primarily governed by the ADR regulations (European agreement concerning the international carriage of dangerous goods by road), UK fleets also need to comply with SLP (Safe Loading Pass) rules. And it is one of the committees around the latter that has raised concerns over exhaust temperatures during DPF regeneration.

No one wants to criticise an extra layer of safety-based compliance in a sector carrying such high-risk loads, but it's a pity that ADR is not seen as sufficient. It is in Europe. It is also the case that rules being imposed on communications between truck manufacturers may be hindering progress with an all-brands solution over technical issues.

That said, at the recent FPS (Federation Of Petroleum Suppliers) annual exhibition in Harrogate, Keith Mulhall, sales engineering manager for MAN Truck & Bus UK, confirmed that Euro 6 has raised issues in the SLP committee that wouldn't bother regular haulage fleets. "Temperatures resulting from DPF regeneration can be 300—400 C at the exhaust," he explained. That needn't be a problem, since predicting when regeneration will take place is relatively easy and alerts are automatically initiated. However, MAN has also relocated the static regeneration switch on its petroleum tractors away from the diver's control.

And there's more. Maintenance cycles and a new Microlise telematics module now combine to circumvent the issue, according to Mark Price, international key account manager for MAN. Conceding that regeneration events may be necessary with urban operations, given their lower operating temperatures, he says that MAN's Comfort maintenance programme gives ample notice but that, also, extra telematics data will soon be available.

MAN is nearing the end of field trials that will add its own telematics to the existing Microlise system. "The current architecture relies on access to the vehicle CANbus electronics, through an FMS gateway," explains Price. "The new TBM2 [telematics module] will continue to utilise Microlise software, but, because it is MAN's own unit, it will now have direct access to CANbus data, providing improved engine and driveline information."

As for the rest, MAN's TGS Euro 6 24.440 6x2 midlift Lite tractor – which made its debut on the FPS stand in full ADR/SLP compliant form – is now fitted with what the manufacturer claims is the smallest AdBlue tank available. "We now have a 24-litre tank, which is sufficient to cover three 450-litre diesel tank fills," comments Price. "We've been able to give a little extra chassis space to other components, due to our reduced AdBlue consumption at Euro 6, which is now 2.5—3.0%." And he adds that operators have now established better supplies for AdBlue, meaning less now needs to be carried.

Why choose MAN? Price says it's more than the detailed industry solutions and not just the ERF heritage. "We've invested in product and support like no other brand in this demanding arena. Specialist MAN petroleum regulation fitment centres, and 21 HazMAN locations in our network give the best-equipped and most professionally staffed support for hazardous good operators."

Ian Norwell

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