image of a microseparometer

Using a microseparometer, experienced SwRI technicians determine the water separation characteristics of biodiesel fuels.

For more than 50 years, engineers and scientists at Southwest Research Institute (SwRI) have used their expertise and experience to solve a comprehensive range of fuel and filtration problems. Current technology efforts have been successful in the development of fire-resistant fuels that will not only save countless numbers of lives during active combat but will also reduce costs for U.S. military operations.

For more than five decades, the TARDEC Fuels Laboratory has been on the campus of SwRI. The U.S. Army TARDEC Fuels and Lubricants Research Facility is a government-owned contractor-operated (GOCO) facility that provides state-of-the-art research, development, and engineering services. It functions as an extension of the U.S. Army Tank Automotive Research Development and Engineering Center (TARDEC), Force Projection Technology Business Area, located in Warren, Mich. Augmented by the diverse staff and modern facilities available at SwRI, the TARDEC facility competently conducts fuels and lubricants research for the:

  • U.S. Army
  • Department of Defense
  • Department of Energy
  • Other government agencies such as DARPA
  • Commercial clients

Capabilities for Aviation & Military Alternative Fuels

  • Gas turbine combustion, alternative fuels and emissions control, laser and optical combustion diagnostics, aviation fuel nozzle coking research
  • Fuel and fluid flammability hazard assessments
  • Fuel injection system bench tests
  • Fuel and lubricant investigations in military systems and fuel system component evaluations
  • Fuel injection system wear and performance
  • Jet fuel use in diesel equipment
  • Tribology, engine dynamometer evaluations
  • Bench test development, fuel system materials compatibility
  • Fuels/hardware interactions and test rig design
  • API IP 1581 aviation coalescence
  • EI 1583 aviation fuel water monitors

Related Terminology

alternative fuel  •  military fuel  •  aviation fuel  •  renewable fuel  •  biodiesel diesel  •  fuel additive  •  emissions characterization  •  emissions testing  •  fuel testing  •  fire resistant fuel  •  fuel technology  •  fuel economy  •  fuels and lubricants  •  TARDEC  •  fuel water separation

International Alternative Fuel Technology Center (IAFTC),
Robert Burrahm, Assistant Director, Office of Automotive Engineering, 210-522-3064,

Benefiting government, industry and the public through innovative science and technology
Southwest Research Institute® (SwRI®), headquartered in San Antonio, Texas, is a multidisciplinary, independent, nonprofit, applied engineering and physical sciences research and development organization with 9 technical divisions.