Explained: Why IOC has developed a special fuel for use in Ladakh

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News:Recently,Indian Oil Corporation(IOC) has launched a special winter-grade diesel for the high-altitude regions of Ladakh that can withstand extremely low temperatures during the winter months.

Facts:

About winter-grade diesel:

  • The winter-grade diesel fuel has been developed for motorists in high-altitude sectors like Ladakh, Kargil, Kaza and Keylong.
  • These areas face the problem of freezing of diesel in their vehicles when winter temperatures reach -30 degree Celsius.

Why freezing of diesel fuel happens?

  • Regular diesel fuel contains paraffin wax which is added for improving viscosity and lubrication.At low temperatures,the paraffin wax thickens or gels and hinders the flow of the fuel in the car engine.
  • Special types of diesel are thus used at low temperatures that contain additives enabling the fuel to remain fluid in such conditions.
  • Hence,the winter-grade diesel has a low pour point (the temperature below which the liquid loses its flow characteristics) of -33° Celsius making it capable of withstanding the extreme winter weather conditions in Ladakh.

Additional information:

About IOC:

  • Indian Oil Corporation Limited (IOCL) commonly known as IndianOil is an Indian state government owned oil and gas company headquartered in New Delhi.
  • It is a Public Sector Unit(PSU) and is India’s largest commercial oil company.