Recently I have been looking at some commercial systems that allow the use of vegetable oil in diesel engines. By the claims that the companies make it sounds pretty interesting. However, I realize they are selling a product and will usually only put forth info that makes them look good. What does anybody jnow about converting either a newer model PSD or a pre-PSD diesel to run on veggie oil?
This doesn't answer your question, but I remember seeing on a documentary someone taking/recycling used cooking oil from resturaunts, refining it, and then using it as motor fuel on a small scale. Obviously it must cost more per gallon to produce than regular dinosaur juice, or we'd see more of this...
It can be done, I don't know on the PSD's, but at least on the IDI's with good success, but there are modifications necessary to prevent gunking up the internals. The oil needs to be heated to at least 180 degrees to get it closer to it's flashpoint. It also thickens when the weather is cooler, and has to be warmed up to flow effectively. Generally what is done is to have 2 tanks, one to start and warm up on, the other to run down the road on, then shut down again on regular type diesel.
I know a fleet mechanic that supervises the shop for the city. They recently switched to using alternatives to diesel. Biggest problem he noted was that the alternative (Bio and Vegetable oil) fuels tend to gum up the working parts if the vehicles are not run on a regular basis. If the vehicles sit for a day or two, they are really difficult to start and do not run very well.
Also, you will not get near the mileage out of alternative fuels. There simply is not as much energy in the alternative fuels.