What's up with the wildly expensive EPA licensing for the mechanics who want to do CNG conversions? Safety is cool, but I've heard it's $10,000 per vehicle year, make and model. That's a lot of overhead and it's driving the cost to the consumer way up! It's a stumbling block in a movement towards widely-adopted CNG.
LNG = liquid natural gas is very cold even under high pressure. so in theory, small amounts of LNG could be added to the fuel tank along with the CNG = compressed natural gas to keep the tank from becoming very hot, during rapid filling. If so, the future availability of LNG in Oregon could be a big plus. I don't think an empty CNG tank can be filled in one minute without producing dangerous temperatures, without a cooling method. If the CNG station can only fill your tank to 1500 psi (due to more sales than expected) a small amouni of LNG can increase the pressure to more than 3000 psi, thus increasing the distance to the next fill up. The down side is too much LNG put in a tank will result in lots more than 3600 psi in the tank a few minutes latter. Neil
Hi Neil: Good points on refuelling...Unlike petro-liquid fuels [which are delivered to a station by tanker and
kept in an underground tank, I think CNG will be delivered right off of an 'industrial' service pipeline [thru sa-
fety cutoff valves and large regulators]. Think of factories that have such delivery--they receive as much as
they normally need--much when their furnaces and other appliances are roaring and little when they knock
off for lunchtime of on non-workdays...The next time you are behind commercial buildings, look at the nat.
gas service equipment--large regulators, meters, etc...Another good point you raise is filling CNG tanks in
vehicles: I think that [unlike filling two large truck tanks as is done now], large trucks will be 'puffed-up' with
one hose and lock-on fitting: All tanks will be filled at once and it shudn't take very long as all tanks wud
equalize the fuel?..Aaron Allen...
Hi Aaron: Present natural gas lines carry much less pressure than 3600 psi, with rare exceptions, so further compression is needed to fill vehicle CNG tanks. I think stations will have large tanks at about 5000 psi. I suppose some trucks will have multiple tanks which can be filled, at the same time, if the fueling station is equipped that way.
Multiple power cords should also be practical for fast charging batteries in electric vehicles. Does anyone know how the fastest safe charge rate for each customer will be determined? Worse some vehicles will be charged with ac which is converted to dc inside the vehicle. Some will have the option of charging the battery with dc. We can not be sure the driver knows what his vehicle needs. Neil
Hi Neil: Good point. Using the 'Phil' [residential gasline to high-pressure fuel tanks compressor]
as an example, why can't the stations have a 'demand-activated' CNG-fuelled diesel-powered
pump which, like the big air compressors in auto servicing facilities, fire up and pump-up the
'intermediate storage tanks' [between the gasmain and the filling islands] to 3600 psi? Actually,
they cud puff up the 'intermediate-stage pressure to 4-5,000 psi and allow regulators to permit
only 3600psi to be delivered from the actual refuelling 'pump islands'?..As to the variety of elec-
tric recharge points, a sort of standardization of connectors and voltages is evolving [at least
for onboard chargers]...The customers cud park in spaces based upon voltages required?..
The 'pumps' wud have internal regulators to avoid 'frying' the onboard charger...Swish ur credit
card and meters or led-displays on the 'pump' shows what's happening?..The driver and passen-
gers stroll inside to the potty and restaurant and spend 30-45 minutes or so eating and shop-
ping the store--then amble back to the [hopefully] charged-up-enuf vehicle to continue their trip...
Motels cud have charge-up connections also so the travelers' vehicles get a good max. charge
overnite and are ready to go when they checkout?..Only the correct female connector [or 'induc-
tive paddle'] fits the car and a data-handshake or customer charge-select [like present pumps: Receipt? Y/N; Credit/Debit?; Select 87/89/91-3 oct., etc.]...Aaron Allen...
So far the discussion everywhere is will Washington pass anything on natural gas, or as this discussion goes how do we build and supply stations for natural gas, but one of the things that is missing is: How and Where can we convert the millions of vehicles now on the road, not to mention the contunuing flow of new cars.
I keep waiting for Boone to send us all an e-mail outlining what he has in mind and how we "all" can help get it done. This is suppose to be a team effort, not simply everything coming down from on high.
Hi Sean: Starting with truck stops/travel centers, set up the 'pumps' for CNG for both big trux and 'civilian'
cars/SUVs/pickups--perhaps like toll plazas with big trux in some aisles, pvt. cars/trux in others? Gradu-
ally add stations with priority in small towns and busy suburbs, rather than a crash program to have a
CNG station on every block? Only stations that will be immediately used by customers shud be 'chang-
ed'...All unnecessary, money-losing, poorly-managed stations shud be shut down. In this manner, only
well-patronized stations survive and there are fewer storage facilities filled with 'spoiling' fuels..In some places, small strip-malls with 3 businesses can 'share' a station: If they have overlapping hours and all
3 are connected to the 1 'station' [pump controls/pa system/cctv/etc.] the station appears to be open
close to 24/7 but the 'partner-businesses keep it appearing to be open...At some hours, a centralized
control center cud supervise the 'station' from another town?..As to equipping/converting vehicles, by
fitting HHO gas generators, the vehicles can be CNG-only and get around okay--or, if 'bi-fuel', make it
100% ethanol and CNG!..In regions and along routes where CNG is available [and E100 also], take
hard-orders for cars/light trux so equipped...Workingfolk can snarf up good used fleet cars/trux and
benefit from CNG also...Stay-around-home seniors/students/single-Moms/GIs-near-ases/short com- muters/homemaker-errand runners shud go straight, battery electric [BEV] for under $10,000?..
The plan was for CNG for over the road truck. We have diesel and we have gasoline. Most trucks use diesel.
Chicago had natural gas powered bus in 1950 BOOM not sure how many people died, buses went to diesel
I would be in better health if we kept using natural gas.
Hi Henry: The tanks used for CNG in vehicles today are smaller and different than the steel or alu-
minum ones of yesteryear. They are more likely to open and release their contents rather than ex-
plode like a grenade or bomb...The very serious control over mfgr and testing/retesting is worthy...
By 'stretching' the duration/mileage/etc. of a CNG system, less of it has to be carried in vehicles.
Hopefully, the cost of such installations will hold the line or decrease. One thing not mentioned by
anyone is to make the 'backup fuel 'flex', that is blended or straight gasoline/ethanol in any propor-
tion allowing one to carry a few gallons of liquid fuel if one's CNG runs out...Almost everyone drives
past a truckstop/travelcenter/megastation where CNG and flex-fuel is sold: Fill-up and puff-up...
it was not a tank failure. bus was driven off while being filled. snaping hose releasing gas. then no one did anything about it. I think the building was locked and the gas needed to be shut off inside.
I am sure this will never be a problem again. The problem existed for gasoiline pumps as well. now it is fixed.
Here's a subject for us ALL to ponder and challenge governments, gov't. agencies, motor-magazine-publishers,
consumer product testing organizations/publishers, newsmedia, etc: Is there a conspiracy to suppress informa-
tion on alternative energy for vehicles? Is there a conspiracy to NOT print or broadcast information on HHO gas-
generation and actually-useful, economical products/afterproducts to improve mileage, extend range, lower cost, and 'meet-and-beat' emissions standards? Is somebody/are somepeople paying or preventing the know-
lege of, and propagation of, information useful to individual motorists, small fleets, large fleets, and the gen-
eral public? Is there any visible or concealed relationship between Big Oil/OPEC/hedgefunds and gas-
gamers and the automotive media and/or federal and state agencies? Sniping and unfounded accusations
are not needed--but if there are any real smoking-guns or is any evidence of suppression, it deserves to be
blown out, into the daylight! The 'chattering, screaming heads' on catv need to jump on in, big-time instead
of supporting 'corrupt, greedy capitalism-as-usual'! Think about all of this carefully...Now, open your automo-
tive magazines and lookit each page: Are there ANY stories about CNG, bio-fuels, HHO? Are there ANY
stories about affordable electric vehicles? Is there ANY advertising for proven systems and devices to im-
prove economy and reduce emissions, too? Lookit the 'mast' column in these publications [the small print
which discloses the publisher and its mailing address] Write 'em and ask 'em what is going on--they know
about these matters but are they suppressing 'em--and why? Are they being 'compensated' to 'ignore' all
of this information? If so, by WHOM? Do the 'WHOM' wear [expensive] suits? Flowing robes? Huh?
Let's make 'em sing and get on the fuels/energy bandwagon--there are more of 'us' then 'them'!..Aaron Allen...
Clearly most everyone does favors for persons and organizations which they like, but I'm not sure that should be regarded as a conspiracy. For the good of humanity we should try to be unbiased. Some of the alternatives are seriously over-sold such as HHO. HHO may be reducing the credibility of other alternatives = I don't see why HHO can reduce our dependence on foreign oil by even 5% = claims to the contrary are likely dishonest.. Neil