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Argonne Evaluates Propane Bus Fleets

November 24, 2014 in Propane, Publications by Rich Piellisch  |  No Comments

Finds 50% Cost-per-Mile Reductions for Some, But Challenges Too

The U.S. Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory has released a study that examines five school bus fleets that are successfully using propane autogas to fuel buses.


This case study highlights five school districts that used propane-fueled school buses successfully.

The case study highlights five school districts that used propane-fueled school buses successfully.

“The case study describes how some of the school districts saved nearly 50% on a cost per mile basis for fuel and maintenance relative to diesel, in addition to seeing a variety of other environmental and social benefits,” states an Argonne summary.

AFLEET Applied

The study “describes both the benefits and challenges of deploying propane in school bus fleets,” states a release. Argonne used the AFLEET – Alternative Fuel Life-Cycle Environmental and Economic Transportation – tool developed for DoE’s Clean Cities program (F&F, November 7, 2013) to evaluate the vehicles’’ performance.

The fleets examined are

  • Alvin Independent School District in Texas: 28 buses;
  • Dallas County Schools: 10 buses;
  • Northside ISD (Texas): 59 buses;
  • Ysleta ISD (Texas): 8 buses; and
  • Gloucester County Schools (Virginia): 5 buses.

The results showed payback periods ranging from three to eight years. The study also found “that propane school buses exhibited a smaller fuel efficiency penalty relative to diesel buses than typically expected.”


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Source: Argonne National Lab with Fleets & Fuels follow-up

Posted in Propane, Publications and tagged , .

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