MEETING SUMMARY - AUGUST 16, 1994


          The second meeting of the Performance Subcommittee was aimed at
          further defining test fuel specifications, refining the test
          protocol, selecting test fleets, and procurement of test fuels.

          Draft Test Protocol

          Jim Guthrie of the Air Resources Board (ARB) discussed the
          comments received on the test protocol and described the changes
          that were made since the first meeting.  Based on comments
          received from subcommittee members, staff proposes to test
          wintertime Phase 2 reformulated gasoline (RFG) against wintertime
          base fuel and summertime Phase 2 RFG against summertime base
          fuel.  Staff is proposing to extend the summertime test period
          into July and to reduce the number of smog checks, one at the
          beginning of the test program, one before the transition to
          summer fuel, and one before the end of the test.  As written in
          the protocol, the ARB plans to take fuel samples of the test and
          control fuel throughout the program.  If a leak or seep is found,
          the vehicle is to be repaired immediately.  Comments regarding
          the training of inspectors for consistency were also
          incorporated.  The committee agreed that inspectors, who are ASE
          certified, will be trained to perform visual inspections only.
          In the case of multiple drivers per vehicle, each driver will be
          required to fill out a survey form.  Finally, ARB staff requested
          new comments on the test protocol so that the comments could be
          incorporated by the next meeting since we are attempting to
          finalize the protocol at the next subcommittee meeting.

          The committee discussed the advantages and disadvantages of
          reporting performance data daily or weekly.  Daily reporting has
          more detailed driveability information which can be compared to
          ambient temperature.  Some committee members suggested reporting
          data at each fueling since less frequent data collection would
          more accurately capture performance characteristics that are
          important to the driver.  Many members agreed that some changes
          will have to be made; however, what changes should be made have
          not been agreed upon.

          Tim Sprik of Shell Oil presented a slide showing that a minimum
          number of observations is necessary to reasonably avoid false
          conclusions.  If the subcommittee tries to test many fuels or
          divide the test fleet into independent groups, the test program
          could indicate problems with Phase 2 RFG when no problem actually
          exists.  To obtain statistically significant data with the
          resources available, the number of test fuels has to be limited.

          Fuel Specifications

          Fuel properties were, again, discussed in attempt to narrow the
          type of fuel to be tested.  The discussion revolved around the
          oxygenate selection and the aromatic hydrocarbon level.  But, the
          committee could not agree on the fuel specifications and number
          of fuels to be used in the test program.  The committee expects
          to resolve these issues at the next meeting.

          ARB staff incorporated changes to the fuel specifications based
          on comments received at the previous meeting and created a new
          table of the fuel specifications for winter and summer tests.
          Staff also proposed to use MTBE in Northern California for summer
          and winter.  In Southern California, staff proposed to use MTBE
          in the summer and ETOH in the winter.  However, the committee
          discussed whether or not ethanol should be tested in this
          program.  From the discussion, it appears that ethanol may be
          used in the future; however, it will probably not be the primary
          oxygenate used.  Blending ethanol and MTBE is an option for
          testing the combined effects of both oxygenates.  However,
          including ethanol in the test fuel could present problems due to
          "house keeping" problems (gum build-up, moisture, and unclean
          storage or distribution equipment) that could be falsely
          attributed to Phase 2 RFG and not the ethanol.  The committee did
          not reach a consensus on the type of oxygenate to use; therefore,
          the ARB staff will contact refiners that will be complying with
          the federal oxygenate program in the South Coast Air Basin to
          determine the likely extent that ethanol will be used.  The staff
          will also contact automobile manufacturers for their insights on
          aromatic hydrocarbon levels and on which oxygenate to test.

          When comments on the fuel properties were requested, Mike
          Kulakowski of Texaco expressed concern that the 19 percent
          aromatic level proposed for test fuel was not severe enough, he
          preferred 14 percent to 15 percent.  One of Texaco's affiliates
          produced gasoline at an aromatic hydrocarbon level at less than
          10 percent (some of it was below 5 percent aromatics), which
          caused about 30 failures of O-rings and swivel joints in retail
          dispensing equipment.  Similar problems have not occurred at that
          refinery after the refinery set a minimum aromatic specification
          of 10 percent.  Texaco is interested in testing the lower limits
          of the aromatic hydrocarbon levels.  The possibility of creating
          a separate test group in Central California to test low aromatic
          fuels was discussed, and is being investigated by Texaco and the
          ARB for the next meeting.

          The subcommittee discussed two possible methods of obtaining test
          fuels.  The first approach is to purchase the test fuel and have
          it shipped.  The second is to create the test fuel by obtaining
          blendstocks from California refineries and blending them in a
          California facility.  These are ideas that will be explored by
          staff for the next meeting so that a method can be chosen.

          Size and Make-up of Fleet

          John Courtis discussed the current ARB proposal based on comments
          from subcommittee members.  ARB staff suggests 1,000 test fleet
          vehicles and 1,000 control vehicles to be tested; 500 vehicles
          are to be tested in Northern California and 500 in Southern
          California.  In Southern California, staff proposes that all of
          the test vehicles be from employee fleets.  ARB staff has already
          spoken with several companies in Southern California about an
          employee fleet.  For the fleet In Northern California, staff
          proposes that 200 vehicles be from centrally operated fleets and
          the remaining 300 vehicles be from employee fleets.

          Resources are the main limitation in creating Northern California
          employee fleets, but there are other constraints that may limit
          the size or type of test fleet.  The limitations we have
          encountered are the number of volunteers for an employee fleet,
          the availability of a central fueling facility, and the ability
          to manage the logistics of fueling vehicles.  Staff is proposing
          that a majority of the test fleet be privately owned vehicles to
          avoid a more narrow age range biasing from centrally maintained
          private fleets.  ARB staff is still seeking suggestions from
          subcommittee members of companies that are willing to be part of
          the test program and have the available fueling facilities.

          Off-Road Vehicles and Equipment

          Jack Kitowski made a brief presentation on the status of the off-
          road test program, which is preceding the on-road program in many
          aspects.  Most of the off-road fleets have been selected, and
          some testing has already begun.  For the tests that are currently
          in progress, the equipment manufacturers are using their own data
          collection forms that have a high level of detail.  From these
          data the subcommittee will be able to choose the data to be
          analyzed.  The Portable Power Equipment Manufacturers Association
          is doing durability tests on some equipment, and the University
          of California, Davis will be testing various farm and lawn and
          garden equipment relatively soon.  The ARB and EPA are sponsoring
          two test programs in which the engines can be taken apart and
          inspected, if necessary.  The test fuel  being used is Phase 2
          certification gasoline with MTBE as the oxygenate, and the
          equipment tested is approximately 7 years old before being

          Like the on-road vehicle test program, fuel properties are the
          main concern for the off-road test program.  Some ethanol fuels
          are being tested, but they do not meet the Phase 2 certification
          fuel specifications.  Because off-road vehicles operate on small
          amounts of fuel, several fuels can be tested.

CBG Program Advisory and Subcommittee Activities