Biofuels spur growth of fuels testing company |

Biofuels spur growth of fuels testing company

Pat Patera

Biodiesel is not a new idea; Germany developed it during the World Wars to fuel tanks.

But today, everyone from large co-ops to lone farmers are brewing up batches of biofuel. Regardless of the source, buyers want to know that the product meets standards set by the American Society for Testing and Materials.

Inferior fuels could degrade in storage or even damage an engine, says Mike Beteag, lab operations manager at National Tribology Services, Inc. (Tribology is the science of solids and lubricants, i.e. friction.)

Bently acquired the Massachusetts company, which initially tested industrial oil, five years ago and added the biodiesel analysis service.

With a customer base of about 75 companies, National Tribology Services still does oil analysis, but it’s biodiesel that shows growth potential, says Beteag.

Sales Specialist Alan Coombs, who travels to talk with customers at trade shows, says attendance at those events is indicative of interest.

The first year he attended the National Biodiesel Board conference in San Antonio, attendance stood at 500. That doubled to 1,000 the following year and to 2,000 the next.

“The biodiesel is providing us with a good rate of growth; better than the conventional oil testing,” says Coombs.