ICAT has completed the first BS-VI certification for a heavy-duty engine model for M/s Volvo Eicher Commercial Vehicle Limited. The engine has been developed and manufactured indigenously by Volvo Eicher in India. The successful completion of the compliance test of the engine, much ahead of the implementation date of 1 April 2020, gives sufficient time for product stabilization in terms of making it more robust and cost competitive for the end consumers.
The pro-active approach from the Government of India has made the country leapfrog from the conventional BS-IV to directly adopt BS-VI emission norms as the next level for the regulatory framework in India. The BS-VI emission standards are much more elaborate in their scope and integrate substantial changes to existing emission standards ensuring cleaner products to the consumer. Besides the more stringent limits on the gaseous emission components, the particulate matter (PM) limits have also been significantly reduced along with the introduction of particle number (PN) limits.
The International Centre for Automotive Technology (ICAT) is a division of NATRiP implementation society (NATIS), under the administrative control of the Ministry of Heavy Industries & Public Enterprises, Government of India. ICAT is the first of new world-class centers established under the National Automotive Testing and R&D Infrastructure Project (NATRiP) with the main objective of carrying out Research & Development besides extending homologation facilities in the field of Automotive Engineering.
The BS — or Bharat Stage — emission standards are norms instituted by the government to regulate the output of air pollutants from internal combustion engine equipment, including motor vehicles. India has been following the European (Euro) emission norms, though with a time-lag of five years.
Difference between BS-IV and the new BS-VI:
The major difference in standards between the existing BS-IV and the new BS-VI auto fuel norms is the presence of sulfur. The newly introduced fuel is estimated to reduce the amount of sulfur released by 80%, from 50 parts per million to 10 ppm. As per the analysts, the emission of NOx (nitrogen oxides) from diesel cars is also expected to reduce by nearly 70% and 25% from cars with petrol engines.
Upgrading to stricter fuel standards helps tackle air pollution. Global automakers are betting big on India as vehicle penetration is still low here when compared to developed countries. At the same time, cities such as Delhi are already being listed among those with the poorest air quality in the world. The national capital’s recent odd-even car experiment and judicial activism against the registration of big diesel cars show that governments can no longer afford to relax on this front.
With other developing countries such as China have already upgraded to the equivalent of Euro V emission norms a while ago, India has been lagging behind. The experience of countries such as China and Malaysia shows that poor air quality can be bad for business. Therefore, these reforms can put India ahead in the race for investments too.