Cummins Emissions Solutions ready with DPFs for 2007 engines

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With 52 days until the new emissions standards take effect in January, Cummins Emissions Solutions announced Thursday, Nov. 9, that it has begun producing diesel particulate filters at its exhaust aftertreatment manufacturing facility in Mineral Point, Wis. Cummins and other engine makers will use the DPFs to meet the new emissions standards that will reduce particulate emissions in on-highway diesel-powered vehicles by 90 percent while also significantly reducing nitrogen oxide emissions.

A DPF, sometimes called a soot or particulate trap, contains a porous substrate, often ceramic, that traps particulate matter from exhaust gas flowing through it; the particulates continually are burned off by exhaust heat in a process called passive regeneration. The heating process is enhanced by using a diesel oxidation catalyst, located just in front of the DPF and part of the same assembly; the DOC contains a noble metal that accelerates combustion of the hydrocarbons and soot passing through, releasing energy and heating the exhaust beyond its normal temperature as it enters the DPF. The Cummins DPF will have a light coating of precious metals to enhance its performance.

When a vehicle’s duty cycle is such that the exhaust gas is not hot enough to burn the particulates, a small amount of fuel is injected into the DPF to raise the temperature and burn off the particulates; this is called active regeneration. Whether or not there is a fuel economy penalty with the new engines will depend on engine make, duty cycle and application, CES representatives said. Fuel economy is less likely to drop in on-highway applications because those engines primarily will use passive regeneration.

CES has been preparing for the 2007 emissions changes for five years; its products have nearly 17 million miles and the equivalent of four winters of testing across multiple platforms and applications, said Mike Cross, CES vice president and general manager. The testing identified more than 100 issues, which will be fixed by January, he said. “We are exactly where we planned to be 52 days before launch.”

“I think as it unfolds in the marketplace, you’ll see we have the right technology and it’s ready,” said Dr. John Wall, Cummins’ chief technical officer. Looking ahead to 2010, Wall said he expects additional aftertreatment will be necessary to meet the 90 percent reduction in NOx emissions required under those standards.

The Mineral Point plant began in 1947 as Nelson Muffler out of a small space in a former county garage; today’s facility – now about 72,000 square feet – was constructed in 1974 and expanded in 2006 to enable production of the DPF systems. The plant has manufactured more than 1.5 million medium- and heavy-duty diesel oxidation catalysts and well over 10,000 medium- and heavy-duty DPFs in its history; it has the capacity to produce 200,000 units per year.

CES was formed in 2002, under the Fleetguard Emissions Solutions brand, to provide advanced aftertreatment technologies to meet emissions regulations around the world; it was rebranded as CES in 2006. CES provides original equipment and retrofit aftertreatment systems for Cummins and other engine makers; it reported sales in excess of $100 million in 2005 and is projecting more than $500 million in annual revenue by 2009 as demand for aftertreatment grows.