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GE and Chesapeake Energy to partner on infrastructure to speed adoption of natural gas as transportation fuel; CNG, LNG and home refueling

7 March 2012

GE and Chesapeake Energy Corporation have agreed to collaborate to develop infrastructure solutions that will help accelerate the adoption of natural gas as a transportation fuel. The two signed a memorandum of understanding on a multi-year product and services development partnership to develop and bring to market compressed natural gas (CNG) and liquefied natural gas (LNG) transportation and natural gas home-fueling solutions.

As part of the newly announced partnership collaboration, beginning in the fall of 2012 GE will provide more than 250 modular and standardized CNG compression stations for NGV (natural gas vehicle) infrastructure. These units, also known as “CNG In A Box”, will provide the core infrastructure to enable expanded access to CNG at fueling stations and other designated installations.

CNG In A Box takes natural gas from a pipeline and compresses it on-site at an industrial location or at a traditional automotive refilling station to then turn it into CNG. A CNG vehicle, such as a taxi, bus or small truck, can then refill its tank using a traditional fuel dispenser, much like those used for diesel or gasoline refueling.

Key features include:

  • The gas compression, storage, cooling, drying and controls are easy to ship and maintain due to its compact “In Box” design.

  • The units come in two configurations: an 8 foot x 20 foot container or 8 foot x 40 foot container, depending on the site’s need.

  • Its modular and intuitive design makes it “Plug & Play” on-site.

  • The offering includes GE Wayne branded dispensers with credit card capability and provision for “Point Of Sale” interface.

  • The fuel dispenses at a rate of about 7 gasoline gallon equivalent per minute.

This CNG technology will be brought to market by Peake Fuel Solutions—a Chesapeake affiliate—which has experience with natural gas vehicles, vehicle emission controls and natural gas market dynamics. Chesapeake also brings considerable in-house expertise in CNG market development to the GE collaboration, including retail station relationships, fleet outreach and education programs and policy engagement.

A vehicle using CNG can reduce annual fuel costs up to 40 percent, assuming 25,700 miles per year driven, gasoline priced at $3.50/gallon and CNG at $2.09/gasoline gallon equivalent. This represents savings totaling as much as $1,500 per fleet vehicle per year. In total, for each fleet vehicle using fuel provided by CNG In A Box instead of gasoline, a fleet operator can reduce CO2e emissions from fuel combustion by about 24%, or 2.2 metric tons per vehicle annually, assuming an average fleet vehicle travels approximately 25,700 miles per year.

Other elements of the new collaboration include:

  • Aftermarket services for natural gas fueling infrastructure.

  • GE’s LNG fueling plants, which adapt GE’s proven large-scale LNG liquefaction technologies to smaller-scale operations. Using LNG as a substitute for diesel or fuel oil can reduce combustion emissions up to 25%.

  • Development of home refueling technologies.

  • Co-marketing of products and services resulting from the partnership.

The collaboration is designed to leverage GE’s global Oil & Gas technology portfolio with Chesapeake’s expertise in developing fueling solutions to lower the ownership and operational costs of natural gas vehicle (NGV) fueling stations. With the development of shale resources significantly increasing the amount of low-cost natural gas in North America, GE and Chesapeake believe that their collaboration can help incentivize operators to put more NGVs on US highways.

March 7, 2012 in Infrastructure, Natural Gas | Permalink | Comments (10) | TrackBack (0)

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Comments

This is awesome. With natural gas, you know you are supporting mostly domestic energy producers & keeping your energy dollars more local than with crude.

The bottleneck is not the CNG or LNG infrastructure. Fleet operators can get such fueling infrastructure within months of ordering. The bottleneck is the lack of proper vehicles that runs on natural gas and that are not hopeless retrofits that compromises the utility of the vehicles by using the trunk space for gas cylinders.

Delivery trucks and big rigs have the space and can carry the weight, they would be good candidates for CNG/LNG.

The economics of fuel savings should seal the deal, but over 40 years it has not. Some would say it was low priced oil, but it has always made sense and makes much more now.

Henrik,

But this is not the case for Europe. We do not have any NG. Or it will be imported from Russia or Iran 4 times higher price than on US market? Therefore economics valid for US is not applicable for EU. US resource could be limited as well. Nobody knows real potential.

I oppose tight linkage to the primary fuel source as we do have with current ICE in general which leads to the competition limitation.

And to think, somebody here was (at one point) arguing for GTL instead of NGVs because, among other things, 'converting enough gas[oline] stations would take too long.'

Its bad news for Europe.. but not for countries that have vast reserves of methane.

I think it would be more practical to distribute LNG (at cryogenic temperatures)in tanker trucks to local gas stations.. and have the stations convert it to CNG on site. That "CNG in a Box" sounds too bulky for a small urban gas station. Hopefully starting with LNG will make it easier.

Picken's company is installing LNG at truck stops in the hopes that big rigs will convert, save money and reduce oil imports.

I can see delivery trucks using CNG, they would save money as well. Whether pickup trucks will run CNG in any great number is questionable.

Millions of cars and trucks now run on gasoline, it is available in many places, so if we make gasoline from natural gas, we already have the distribution and vehicles with no E10 blend wall.

NG trucks-buses-ships make sense as an interim solution for USA and countries with large NG-SG reserves.

The lowest hanging fruit with regard to using more natural gas for transportation is the big rigs as Pickens has been telling anyone who would listen for almost ten years now (and only recently are people starting to get the message). Below is an article about the use of LNG in America for big rigs that I find quite informative and easy to read.

In some cases the payback time for the premium paid for a big LNG rig is less than two years!

http://energy.aol.com/2012/02/07/lng-trucks-can-keep-on-trucking-la-to-salt-lake/

Here is an informative video on the president’s view about natural gas as transportation fuel.

http://www.cleanenergyfuels.com/video/obamasupports_video.html

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