Let Them truckers roll, 10-4 diesel exhaust fluid

ATRI - March/April 2017

Grace Miller – Environmental Scientist, VET Environmental Engineering, LLC

Among the fluids auto recyclers may encounter is a product called diesel exhaust fluid (DEF). DEF is a clear, stable liquid used in diesel vehicles with selective catalytic reduction (SCR) systems.  SCR systems using DEF reduce mono-nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions in exhaust. NOx emissions contribute to smog formation and reduce air quality.  SCR technology, used for decades to control emissions from marine vessels, locomotives, and stationary sources, is now common in diesel road vehicles.  The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) tightened emission regulations in 2010, leading to more widespread use of DEF.  In an SCR unit, DEF is injected into a vehicle’s exhaust stream, where it combines with NOx emissions in a catalyst and converts them to harmless nitrogen gas and water.  SCR technology decreases NOx emissions up to 90 percent, reduces other emissions, and increases engine efficiency.  DEF is carried in a separate onboard tank with a blue lid.   

Is all DEF the same? 

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