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On October 9, 1951, the chairman of Section E on Determination of Elements in Fuels, of Research Division III, ASTM Committee D-2, was discussing the general subject of spectrographic analysis of used diesel engine oil. In reviewing the problem, he stated that it was important to establish the metallic constituents that are present in used diesel engine oil, designate which of these elements are pertinent, determine what concentration range will be encountered, and establish what time element is to be involved and what accuracy and precision will be required. A discussion of the various industries that were interested in spectrographic analysis of used diesel engine oil indicated that the railroads were not only interested but were utilizing this technique. During the interim period preceding the February 4, 1952, meeting, various railroads, known to be employing spectrographic methods on used lubricating oil, were asked to submit their laboratory procedures and to attend the next meeting of Section E. During this meeting, informal reports were given by representatives of four railroads and two locomotive builders. The discussions covered the value of spectrographic analysis, the metals that were involved, and the possible concentration ranges which would be encountered. In June, 1952, it was decided that a subcommittee should be appointed to study existing sampling procedures and, if possible, to make recommendations on the proper sampling techniques to be employed on diesel engines operating in railroad service. In February, 1953, a three-man study group was appointed to survey the railroads on their interest in spectrographic analysis, and more particularly, on the method employed to obtain their samples. The subgroup developed a questionnaire which was mailed in April, 1953, to the Engineers of Test on 99 Class I railroads.
Simpson, W. K.
General Motors Corp., La Grange, Ill.