Diesel fuel is an important component of today’s economy, providing semi-trucks and trains with energy to run. Diesel engines are long-lasting and efficient. Knowing the flashpoint of diesel fuel and the role it plays in an engine is important for those working within the fuel industry.
The flashpoint of diesel fuel
The flashpoint of any liquid is the lowest temperature at which it will produce sufficient vapor to produce a flammable mixture in the air. The lower the flashpoint temperature, the easier it is to ignite the air if an ignition source is present. The higher the flashpoint, the safer the material is to handle.
The flashpoint of diesel fuel depends on what kind of fuel it is. The most common diesel used on the road today is known as #2 diesel. According to a Material Safety Data Sheet published by ConocoPhillips, the flashpoint of diesel fuel is between 125 and 180 degrees Fahrenheit (52 to 82 degrees Celsius). The flashpoint of any liquid can change as the pressure in the air around it changes.
The role the flashpoint of diesel plays in an engine
Both gasoline and diesel engines work under the same principles. Fuels ignites within an engine’s combustion chamber. The force of the resulting explosion moves pistons up. The pistons move the crankshaft, which creates the force to move the wheels on the vehicle. As the piston moves down, the air within the chamber is compressed before the fuel is added, which helps its ability to combust.
The differences between gasoline and diesel engines is how the fuel ignites within the combustion chamber. A gasoline engine depends on a spark plug to ignite a fine mist of gasoline. The diesel engine does not use a spark plug, instead using the sheer heat of compression to ignite the fuel. Diesel engines compress the air within the combustion chamber by many times the compression rate used within a gasoline engine. As the air compresses, it begins to heat up and reaches a temperature that ignites the fuel.
Professionals working within the oil and gas industry need to be aware of diesel’s flashpoint for safety reasons. If the fumes of a tank full of this fuel reach their flashpoint, it could become very dangerous. All safety precautions should be used properly when handling and storing any kind of fuel.
At Kendrick Oil, we distribute a wide variety of wholesale fuels, including diesel and regular gas. If you are in need of wholesale fuel or if you have any questions about any of our fuel products and services, give us a call at (806) 250-3991. You can connect with us via email through our Contact Us page. We have locations in Texas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Kansas.