ANCHORAGE, AK – Alaska’s Natural Gas Development Authority tested a propane-fueled F-250 pickup trucks for nine months to see how they operate in cold-weather conditions, according to ROUSH CleanTech.
In addition, a number of other public-sector fleets tested the one other pickup truck, including State of Alaska fleet services, the Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport, and the City of Anchorage.
“We actually re-inject millions of gallons of propane back into the North Slope every day,” said Harold Heinze, CEO of Alaska Natural Gas Development Authority (ANGDA). “We need to find good local uses for the vast quantities of propane our state produces, and propane autogas has the potential to accomplish this and so much more. ROUSH CleanTech has the on-road technology to employ propane autogas for all the construction vehicles used in this part of the state, turning a current liability into economic stability. Oil companies are among the heavyweights considering propane autogas as an option to power their fleet over diesel.”
Alaskan fleets typically operate on ultra-low sulfur diesel, which is hauled in by ice road trucks. ROUSH said about 90 percent of US propane supplies are produced domestically, and there are over 4 million gallons of propane that surface from the North Slope in Alaska daily.
Government Fleet spoke with Todd Mouw, vice president of sales and marketing for ROUSH CleanTech, and Brian Carney, director of marketing for ROUSH CleanTech, to get more information about how propane performs in cold temperatures and the company’s technology.
“Liquid propane autogas fuel system applications work well in cold weather situations because of the nature of the fuel and our technology,” said Carney. “Propane boils off into gaseous form at temperatures greater than -40 F in normal atmospheric conditions. Colder than that and it's a liquid. Our system relies on delivering propane in liquid form to the engine and injecting it into the cylinders for combustion. We maintain liquid form through pressure (about 200 psi) for situations down here in the lower 48. When it's as cold out as it can get in Alaska, the system works just fine because the temperatures are good for propane in liquid form.”
Mouw said the geographic location in this case makes a big difference in terms of fuel costs.
“The big issue here in Alaska is that the producers and associated contractors working on the North Slope/Prudhoe Bay are having to truck in their ULSD and gasoline and the cost exceeds $5/gallon,” said Mouw.
By Greg Basich
Source: ROUSH CleanTech