OPW, a Dover Company and a global leader in fluid handling solutions, is proud to introduce the Aqueous Ethanol Float Sensor that delivers industry-leading detection of water in fuel storage tanks for the prevention of fuel contamination.

It takes as little as 40 gallons of water in 10,000 gallons of E10 gasoline for the ethanol to become saturated to the point that it can no longer be suspended, and falls out of the gasoline and settles at the bottom of the tank. This condition is known as phase separation. Fuel that has undergone phase separation can cause significant damage to vehicle engines.

“Water is the enemy of fuel. Contaminated fuel causes serious damage to engines, which is not only expensive to repair, but poses a significant customer loyalty issue for fuel marketers,” said Pete Neil, Automatic Tank Gauging Business Development Manager at OPW Fuel Management Systems.

OPW’s AEF Sensor, which can monitor ethanol blends ranging from E10 to E85, detects product density fluctuations at the bottom of the tank in real time. If the sensor detects density fluctuations, the sensor will first signal the tank gauge to activate a warning, followed by an alarm, which will initiate a motor shutdown. Programmable density thresholds enable operators to address phase separation before contaminated fuel is distributed and fuel inventory is ruined, allowing them to make adjustments in a time frame that offers maximum operational uptime.

Many fuel sites that utilize competing aqueous ethanol detection devices are challenged by false phase separation alarms. OPW’s AEF Sensor provides real-time, temperature-corrected product density readings, which helps to prevent false phase separation alarms.

“Imagine adding fuel from a hot delivery tanker on a 100-degree day to a much cooler below-ground storage tank. These temperature swings affect the density of the fuel and can cause false phase separation alarms. OPW’s AEF Sensor net-corrects for the thermal changes and eliminates false phase separation alarms,” Neil said.

For more information about OPW, visit www.opwglobal.com.