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Tier 4, Mining, and DEF

Last week, we discussed the presence and importance of Diesel Exhaust Fluid (DEF) within the agriculture industry. Like the agriculture industry, the mining industry must also adhere to the Environmental Protection Agency’s Tier 4 standards. Essentially, these standards mandate the reduction of emissions in diesel-run engines. Accordingly, these standards are not in place just for the transportation or automotive industries but for also for any non-road mobile machinery that runs on diesel, including machinery used in mining. These standards have resulted in the increased usage of selective catalytic reduction, which is explained and defined here. Read on to discover how and why DEF is and will be used in the Mining industry!


Tier 4

The machinery used for mining is heavy-duty, and requires diesel to run. The equipment used in mining, construction, and lumber requires diesel because they perform demanding duties that require more horsepower, more torque, better reliability, and unique durability. Of course, since they use diesel that also means that the emit nitrogen oxides and particulate matter (PM) that contribute to smog and other harmful environmental factors. In order to combat these emissions, the EPA mandated that Tier 4 standards come into effect in two phases. The first phase, which occurred in 2011, virtually eliminated particulate matter emissions. The second phase, which will begin in 2014, will bring nitrogen oxide levels to near-zero levels.


America relies on mining to produce raw materials that provide energy. Nearly all the equipment used in mining will be part of the Tier 4 standards mandated by the EPA. Diesel-powered equipment is important for the mining industry, and therefore must comply to meet emission regulations. Many pieces of mining equipment have already switched over to the correct standards, and the rest must be compliant as of the end of this year. Therefore, future mining equipment will produce low emissions while simultaneously maintaining high fuel efficiency. This will result in savings in operating costs, long-term Additionally, lower emissions will mean a healthier working environment for people who already have to be on the lookout for other health problems associated with mining.

Essentially, the Tier 4 diesel-powered mining equipment is looking at up to 5% greater efficiency than the previous standards. Much of the mining equipment can be retrofitted to meet Tier 4 standards, which will also save on having to purchase new pieces of equipment.


According to Tier 4, engines with outputs below560kW (750hp), have had their limit for nitrogen oxides cut by 50% and the permitted particulate level (PM) by 90%. For engines with outputs above 560kW, permitted nitrogen oxide levels will be cut by 45% and particulate limits by 50%.

Nitrogen oxide limits for engines below 560kW will be cut by a further 80%. For high-power mining-class engines above 560kW, Tier 4 Final will launch in 2015, and involve a further 60% decrease in particulate emissions to 0.04g/kW/h.