Military / Defence

Field-based microbial fuel testing for all military operations

FUELSTAT®: field-based alternative with NSN to detect Microbial Contamination in Jet and Diesel fuels in minutes not days.

The very nature of military operations is such that activities are often carried out in times of conflict where time really is a matter of life or death. As such can one really wait several days to identify whether their air, land or sea asset is at its optimum level, or potentially at risk of failure? The answer is, of course not.

Middle distillate fuels such as jet fuel and diesel are at risk of microbial contamination from very robust microorganisms that feed off the hydrocarbons in fuel and are nourished by even the smallest amount of water produced by environmental factors such as condensation that can enter the fuel supply.

This can cause many issues from fuel quantity indication issues, filter clogging, increased injector wear and, in severe cases, corrosion of fuel tank structures in aircraft, vehicle and vessel assets as well as fuel storage tanks that supply them.

Roundel - Military Aviation

The FUELSTAT® solution

Fuel supply within military operations is critical both during times of conflict, peace and even humanitarian rescue operations so identifying microbial contamination swiftly can not only protect assets and safeguard service personnel but also protect the wider humanity. As such FUELSTAT® can really be a safety of life product.

Previously testing for microbial contamination has meant sending samples to a laboratory and waiting days, or weeks for the results but ASTM D6469 highlights that if a sample cannot be tested on-site it should be transported on ice and tested within 4 and no more than 24hrs the sample might not be a true representation of the environment from which it came. Can military operations realistically adhere to these parameters?

Luckily there is a viable, field- based alternative for all military operations and is already in use within a number of military establishments, whilst also extensively used in many other sectors such as commercial aviation (over 400 commercial airlines depend on FUELSTAT®) and complies to the International Standard ASTM D8070 testing process.

FUELSTAT® is based on immunoassay technology, which is widely used in the medical industry to rapidly and accurately detect such things as pregnancy, prostate cancer and hypoglycaemia. Put simply FUELSTAT® only searches for the specific microorganisms that are known to thrive and do damage in diesel and jet fuel. Importantly results are not affected by on location conditions or less than perfect sterility when testing.

FUELSTAT® is simple to use, simply add the sample to the bottle provided with the test kit, shake it, place 4 drops onto a piece of tissue to remove any fuel or particles trapped in the nozzle before adding 4 drops to each of the sample wells on the test paddle and wait 10 minutes for the results to appear. FUELSTAT® requires little instruction and little in way of rigid sterility controls except for a clean sampling jar. The components of the test kit are also recyclable; however the fuel sample must be disposed of as per each individual organisations own protocol.

Military References

There are a variety of reference materials detailing fuel handling best practices to ensure fuel integrity in support of military operations:

  • NATO STANAG 3149 – Minimum quality surveillance for fuels
  • National Military Technical Orders for fuel cleanliness

The FUELSTAT® diesel and jet fuel test kits carry the following NATO Stock Numbers (NSN) for easier ordering:

Part Number
Part Name
Nato Name
NATO Stock Number
Aviation FHR8-2 Fuelstat® resinae Plus FUEL TEST 4940-99-615-6295
Marine, Land Diesel & Fuel Storage FMD8 Fuelstat® Diesel Plus FUEL TEST 4940-99-907-9225
Roundel - Military Transport