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New spark plug extends industrial engine service life

30 November, 2011

A new industrial spark plug, compatible with alternative fuels, is said to provide the power generation sector with extended life in industrial gas engines.

Federal-Mogul Corporation, a US-based supplier of powertrain and safety solutions to global OEMs, has developed a new Champion FB-M18 iridium spark plug for large stationary engine applications, using compressed natural gas (CNG), landfill-gas, or biogas fuels.

The industrial spark plug's new design offers the power generation sector an optimal combination of extended life and high value.

Large industrial gas engines are used to operate electricity generators and large industrial compressors. The operators demand the ultimate in reliable service with increased service life intervals, minimal service downtime and low operating costs.

Engine operating conditions are becoming harsher as cylinder pressures, internal engine temperatures and the use of new and more corrosive fuels are on the rise. Federal-Mogul's new Champion FB-M18 industrial spark plug is said to successfully meet these challenges with a combination of innovation and value.

"We have integrated advanced technologies from our premium spark plug designs into a high-performance, very durable and real-value product for industrial applications," Richard Llope, Federal-Mogul vice president and business director, Global Ignition, Powertrain Energy, said.

"The result is a strong-performing product that has long-term compatibility with a variety of fuels and for a range of applications around the world."

The new Champion FB-M18 spark plug provides improved heat release and durability due to the design of both electrodes, which feature enlarged cores and greater cross-sectional area.

The ground electrode features a grain-stabilised platinum alloy tip for reduced material degradation at extreme temperatures. The centre electrode is constructed of iridium alloy, which further adds to the plug's durability. The revised positioning and orientation of both electrodes provides much better spark efficiency and improved gap wear.

The company has used advanced modulated laser welding techniques to create consistent and robust hermetic bonds between the various dissimilar metals and alloys in the electrodes, ensuring increased durability.

Industrial Fired-In Suppressor Seal (IFISS) core technology, combined with a hot lock shell seal, provides improved sealing, especially at high cylinder temperatures and pressures.

IFISS is a three-in-one design, integrating the resistor, suppressor and core seal, which improves resistance control across the operating temperature range. Hot lock technology also provides a high resistance to shell fracture during engine servicing.

"Our new Champion FB-M18 spark plug has completed extensive validation processes on the engines of multiple engine makers using fuel types from around the world," Llope said.

"The new FB-M18 plug is engineered to provide to the industrial engines market the latest spark plug technology, proven in automotive, racing and commercial engine applications."

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