The UNECE Informal Group on Gaseous Fuelled Vehicles (GFV) held a special workshop session in Brussels on 12th December 2012, to present and discuss various regulatory approaches for retrofit heavy dual-fuel engines. During two sessions presentations were made by dual-fuel system suppliers who provided their input and views about the creation of a Heavy Duty Dual-Fuel (HDDF) regulatory framework within the UN as well as views from different countries regarding their current approach to handling certification (or exemptions) of dual-fuel engines and trucks.
Questions still remain as to what type of regulatory ‘instrument’ would be best suited for D-F systems: more of an OEM approach using Regulation 49 or amending Regulation 115, specifically addressing natural gas and LPG retrofit systems. The system suppliers tended to advocate a more relaxed approach that would, at least for the near future, provide guidance and rules for the conversion of existing diesel engines to dual-fuel diesel/natural gas.
National regulators already take a range of regulatory approaches, some that are more flexible and others that are more prescribed approaches. Some countries still do not allow dual-fuel systems (i.e. Germany) due to the lack of any other international regulatory framework governing dual-fuel systems.
The findings and conclusions from this workshop will be carried forward to the next meeting of the GFV at the UN in Geneva (15th January 2013), following which the issues will be summarized at the Group of Experts on Pollution and Energy so that they may provide guidance as to the best and preferred regulatory approach to govern heavy-duty dual-fuel conversions.
Meanwhile, work is moving forward to develop amendments to regulations (R.49) that will govern HDDF Euro V engines made by OEMs.