SourceLine News & Insights

One of the main concerns in the supply and storage of ethanol is the potential for what is called “phase separation” in gasoline that contains ethanol. Phase separation occurs when enough water contaminates the gasoline, causing the ethanol to attach itself to the water molecules, leaving two distinct layers in the storage tank, a gasoline-only layer at the top and an ethanol/water “cocktail” along the bottom.

With this in mind, it is imperative that motor fuels containing ethanol not be exposed to water during its distribution or use, making housekeeping at the service station very important in the prevention of water contamination. When dispensing fuels containing ethanol, proper filtration is the answer in the detection of phase separation. Special phase separation “alert” dispenser filters have been developed that will notify the operator of the condition by slowing fuel flow to less than 1 gallon-per-minute. For more information, contact your local Source sales representative.