Measurements were taken of various parameters to determine the characteristics of the bulk diesel fuel which was used in the NIOSH Diesel Exhaust/Coal Dust study. Different batches of diesel fuel had to be used during the 2 year study period due to limited fuel storage capacity. The parameters examined included: volatility (as determined by boiling point), weight percent of aromatics, saturates, olefins, carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, sulfur, and oxygen. During the period of study, the initial batch of diesel fuel was replaced with a new batch on five different occasions. Fuel was sampled monthly, with additional samples taken when there was a new fuel batch. While there were some variations observed in the values of the parameters measured, the overall characteristics of the six batches were not significantly different. When the sample to be studied was taken after a few months of storage in the storage tank following a batch change, some abnormal values, particularly the maximum boiling point of the fuel and some changes in elemental analysis did result.
Division of Physical Sciences and Engineering, NIOSH, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Cincinnati, Ohio, 10 pages, 7 references