In order to solve the issues of the chicken and egg situation with CNG, there are new emerging solutions. For years, there have been two main problems that have slowed the adoption of natural gas vehicles.
First, the U.S. is still in the early growth stages both with infrastructure and vehicles. Compared to other countries, we’re far behind. Second, in many cases NGV fleets lack the range next to traditional gasoline fuel systems. Here is where CleanNG’s MagmaCel provides solutions to vehicle range anxiety. As for the fueling infrastructure, which can be a concern for many businesses, there are new pop-up solutions.
Still an emerging alternative fuel in America, there are on about 1,000 natural gas fueling stations, and only half of which are open to the public. Many fleet owners purchase on-site fueling stations for their fleets, while others use local stations such as Clean Energy Fueling and Blue Energy Fuels. Other fuelers are joining in and adopting CNG to their stations such as Love’s, KwikTrip, Pilot Flying J. But for infrastructure to be grown more immediate solutions are needed.
This a great opportunity for companies likeIMW Inc., recently acquired by CleanEnergy, and Vocational Energy’s, Portable Fuel System (PSF) that are taking advantage, creating new mobile fueling stations. This has potential for fleets and other applications to achieve a more competitive fuel price, while permanent infrastructure is improved. For example, small to medium sized businesses that have fleets can now focus on the cost of the conversion and the time lapse for the return on investment rather than focusing on CNG fuel station hurdles.
Companies such as GE’s “CNG in a Box” and Ultimate CNG’s, FuelMuel offer customers repayment plans and an on-sight source of fuel. The FuelMule comes with a reciprocating gas compressor that dispenses eleven diesel gallon equivalents (DGE)/minute at a pressure of 3,600 psi. The fuel station is equipped with type III storage tanks providing a capacity of 550 DGE. Ultimate CNG states the FuelMuel has an ability to fill 35-50 trucks per day. These mobile stations fill the gap that discourages fleet operators from purchasing CNG conversions kits. The fueling stations are becoming more prevalent with international companies beginning to pop up on the radar. One example is General Oil Trading Holdings (GOT), SGS station, which is a mobile and independently operating natural gas station. These stations are shipped by truck, plane or ship by GOT to keep with the growing demand in CNG and the particular mobile stations benefits.
The solution to the adoption of natural gas in U.S. is a simple one, but requires an investment from the entire spectrum of small-large businesses, governmental organizations, and the private sector. Investing in CNG infrastructure, whether mobile or permanent, will provide the end user a faster implementation and return on investment for their particular vehicle or fleet. To do so, individuals and companies must recognize solutions to present problems that will ease in transitioning to new alternatives, such as natural gas.