Low Cost Separation and Vapor Containment for NGV Facilities
And a Strong Showing for CNG Transit at APTA Expo in Houston
Clean Energy Fuels is introducing NGV Easy Bay as a low-cost way to sequester natural gas vehicles in existing maintenance facilities. The patent-pending product, is said to be “the first code-compliant fabric barrier system utilizing an industrial curtain designed for quick, cost-efficient installation and operation.”
NGV Easy Bay “is the lowest cost separation and vapor containment system available” for NGV maintenance and storage facilities, Clean Energy says. It was developed by the company’s facilities modification team, which has been helping potential operators solve the problems faced in converting not only their vehicles but their vehicle support installations for natural gas (F&F, February 23).
NGV Easy Bay can be installed in a matter of days, Clean Energy says: “Custom fabricated panels are scalable to accommodate a single bay isolation project or can be used to divide a large building servicing or storing multiple vehicles.
‘An Unprecedented and Cost-Effective Option’
“Customers now have an unprecedented and cost-effective option available to adapt their facility for NGVs,” Tim Newman, general manager of Clean Energy’s facility modification group, said in a release. “As fleets across the country convert their vehicles to natural gas, a growing need has emerged for a scalable and practical solution to modify facilities. NGV Easy Bay meets these needs remarkably well.”
NGV Easy Bay eliminates the costly and time-consuming requirements of conventional construction approaches by using industrial fabrics rigorously tested to meet ASTM standards for exposure to both CNG/compressed natural gas and LNG/liquefied natural gas, Clean Energy says.
“This unique application is part of a suite of turnkey design and modification services offered by Clean Energy’s in-house team of facility modification specialists,” states the NGV Easy Bay announcement. “This team works with each customer to assess each fleet’s unique needs. Gap analysis and recommendations are made to bring each facility into code-compliance.”
39 Transit Agencies at 62 Locations
Separately, Clean Energy is making a strong showing at the triennial APTA Expo transit show in Houston this week. Houston has 150 CNG buses on order (F&F, October 13) following the lead of Dallas, where four Clean Energy stations are fueling of fleet of nearly 600 NGVs.
Clean Energy predicts strong growth in compressed natural gas for transit agencies, a sector that accounts for a large portion of the company’s volume.
The company already serves 39 agencies at 62 locations, says transit VP John Somers – supporting more than 7,300 buses. For Dallas Area Rapid Transit alone, Clean Energy maintains 23 of its IMW compressors supporting 11 dispensers at four CNG fueling stations.
‘A Big Year for Gas in Texas’
“The whole industry is really changing its attitude toward natural gas,” Somers told F&F prior to the APTA show.
“We’re saving them time and money,” he says. “People don’t want to deal with particulate filter traps. They don’t want to deal with urea” – necessities for modern diesel engines.
“This is going to be a big year for gas in Texas,” Somers says. “Houston is going gas,” he says, “as is San Antonia Via.”
“Our rapid transition to compressed natural gas fuel was transparent to our customers,” says DART maintenance VP Mike Hubbell. He expects by year-end to have upwards of 580 CNG buses in service.
The CNG stations by Clean Energy were built at working DART facilities. They opened simultaneously on October 1, 2012, Hubbell says. They have been increasingly busy fueling 123 Arboc paratransit vehicles and a growing number of 40-foot transit vehicles by North American Bus Industries, now part of New Flyer.
“By the end of this calendar year, all of the 459 NABI buses will be delivered and will be in service,” Hubbell told F&F.
The NABI buses have G-Stor Pro brand Type III CNG tanks by Luxfer Gas Cylinders, mounted and plumbed in roof-top assemblies by Agility Fuel Systems.
The bottom line on CNG? “It has reduced our fuel expenses, both current and projected through 2020, by two thirds,” Hubbell says – $10 million to $12 million per year. DART retired the last of its LNG/liquefied natural gas buses at the end of last month. They too were supported by Clean Energy.
Natural gas, says Clean Energy VP Somers, “is clean, it’s inexpensive, and it’s a domestic fuel.”
“It’s a no-brainer.”
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Source: Clean Energy Fuels with Fleets & Fuels interviews, follow-up