In-line Testing of Fuel & Lube Oil
Navy SBIR FY2014.1

Sol No.: Navy SBIR FY2014.1
Topic No.: N141-044
Topic Title: In-line Testing of Fuel & Lube Oil
Proposal No.: N141-044-0569
Firm: METSS Corporation
300 Westdale Avenue
Westerville, Ohio 43082-8962
Contact: Angela Theys
Phone: (614) 797-2200
Web Site:
Abstract: The US Navy is seeking to reduce the man-hours, sampling errors, and time delays associated with oil monitoring by implementing real-time, in-line oil monitors. The primary concerns that should be addressed by an in-line sensor are particulate, water, and microbial contamination. However, there is also a desire for the sensor to monitor other physical properties like viscosity, specific gravity, and flash point. METSS is proposing to address this need by augmenting commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) equipment that is already well-developed and available for purchase. Specifically, under previous efforts, METSS developed an in-line hydraulic fluid multi-sensor for the US Air Force that performs many of the key functions desired for this program. METSS will use this system as a platform for the current program efforts, adapting its use for fuels and oils of greatest interest to the Navy. METSS will also research and evaluate third-party sensors designed to measure physical properties of oils that could be incorporated into the multi-sensor platform.
Benefits: There is an immediate need for rapid, portable contamination monitors for fuels and oils. The contamination sensor would benefit any industry that uses fuels and lubricating oils, including commercial aircraft and large construction equipment. Having created a water and particulate contamination sensor for hydraulic fluid, METSS is often asked if this technology can be adapted for fuel and other oils and additional physical properties of the fluids. Therefore, it is apparent that there is a growing interest in sensor-based contamination monitoring. METSS anticipates that contamination monitoring will become even more important with the trend towards alternative or "green" fuels, such as biodiesel, that have a greater capacity to absorb water than conventional diesel fuel and have been known to liberate particulates based on their increased solubility in the new fuel.