BlueDrain system–environmentally friendly, automatic low-maintenance water disposal system

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MAHLE BlueDrain system


Stuttgart, September 2008—Modern injection systems for diesel engines require more and more effective wear protection. In addition to highly efficient particle and water separation in the fuel filter, automatic disposal of the separated water is increasingly important. That is why MAHLE has developed the BlueDrain system for diesel fuel with a high water content, which will be available in the future as both a stand-alone system and an integrated system unit in MAHLE fuel filter modules.

Due to local influences, the water content of diesel fuel varies around the world. In some regions, the contaminant particle content in the fuel is up to fifteen times that of Western Europe, and the water content can be greater by a factor of one hundred. This is why MAHLE fuel filter modules, besides having a high particle separation rate, are equipped with a high-efficiency water separation system that effectively protects injection systems from damaging effects such as corrosion, cavitation, reduced lubricity, and microbial growth.

Filter modules with automatic water disposal do not just reliably separate out the water. They also dispose of it in the environment in a controlled manner. For typical systems, it is necessary to check the water level in the fuel filter regularly, and to dispose of the separated water manually as required; the new MAHLE BlueDrain system takes care of everything automatically. This is especially important since fuel filters are often located in hard-to-reach places; incorrect operation is thus prevented. The BlueDrain system thereby simplifies vehicle maintenance significantly, and saves frequent manual water disposal for commercial vehicles, or a visit to the service station for passenger cars.

Since the content of hydrocarbons of the water to be disposed must generally be <2 ppm, it flows through the BlueDrain cleaning unit with activated carbon, patented by MAHLE, which adsorbs hydrocarbons reliably, even for strongly emulsified fuel content. Due to the excellent adsorption capacity of activated carbon, future standards are also guaranteed to be fulfilled, and only about 150 milliliters of activated carbon, for example for a heavy duty application, are needed for the cleaning unit, which is defined as the component's service life.

An intelligent actuation and safety concept determines the current operating condition and guarantees safe systems function. Advantages of the MAHLE BlueDrain system, compared with other functional principles, are the low cost of the replaceable cleaning unit, and its suitability for both pressure and suction side applications.

The MAHLE Group is one of the 30 largest companies in the automotive supply industry worldwide. As a leading manufacturer of components and systems for the combustion engine and related products, MAHLE ranks among the top 3 systems suppliers for piston systems, cylinder components, valve train systems, air management systems, and liquid management systems. MAHLE employs around 48,000 people at 110 production plants and eight research and development centers. In 2007, MAHLE achieved sales of over EUR 5 billion (USD 7.5 billion).