New ASTM standard provides water separation test for jet fuel

A new ASTM International standard will help ensure the smooth flowing distribution of aviation fuel. The new standard (soon to be published as D8073, Test Method for Determination of Water Separation Characteristics of Aviation Turbine Fuel by Small Scale Water Separation Instrument) details a fast and fully automated way to determine whether free water can be removed effectively from jet fuel batches using coalescing filters.

Jet fuel passes through various filtration steps before reaching an aircraft. At one of these steps, free water is removed from the fuel by coalescing filters. The standard will allow users to determine the ability of a fuel to shed water, otherwise known as its “water separation characteristic.”

According to ASTM member Ian Mylrea, research and development manager, Stanhope Seta Ltd., the new standard can be used by any business that handles or tests jet fuel. This includes refineries, pipeline and truck terminals, offshore rigs and airports.

“The water separation rating provided by the new standard provides those handling jet fuels with a direct indication of whether the fuel is suitable for filtration or whether it contains surfactants that cause issues during filtration,” says Mylrea. “In essence, all individuals involved in the distribution of jet fuel from the refinery to the wing of the aircraft will use this standard.”