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Hello everyone,

it seems that Tesla Semi trucks won't be produced this year, so that the only option to decarbonize trucks may be CNG & LNG trucks. In China LNG trucks account for 10% of market share, in Europe 3-4% growing double digit. US market is still lagging..do you think US will ever catch-up? 

I wrote a few blog-articles on SeekingAlpha on natural gas mobility, focusing specifically on a company called Westport Fuel Systems. Let me know what you think.

https://seekingalpha.com/instablog/48761778-edwarddg/5507143-methane-biomethane-rng-potential-for-transport-sectors-decarbonization

https://seekingalpha.com/instablog/48761778-edwarddg/5507627-methane-biomethane-rng-potential-for-transport-sector-decarbonization-westport-fuel-systems

https://seekingalpha.com/instablog/48761778-edwarddg/5544801-lng-trucks-gaining-traction-in-europe-biomethane-narrative-westport-fuel-systems-still-room

https://seekingalpha.com/instablog/48761778-edwarddg/5570995-westport-fuel-systems-q4minus-2020-review-and-main-takeaways 

thanks,

Edoardo

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If you aren't familiar with the Sabatier reaction, look this up. The chemical reaction is 4H2 + CO2 -> CH4 + 2H2O. This has been understood since the late 1890's and Raney Nickel-based reactors have been around since the 1920's.

There are various processes for converting methane to methanol or propane, either of which is a liquid fuel without extreme pressure. Methanol is liquid at room temperature and propane becomes a liquid at relatively incidental pressures. Recent discoveries (recent meaning since the start of 2021) are showing new ways of producing methanol from methane under room temperature and pressure conditions, or producing methanol directly from CO2.

Methanol (COH4) breaks up into synthesis gas (CO + 2H2) with mild heating, and is usually used as the starting point for making gasoline or diesel using Fischer-Tropf synthesis.

Natural gas is 'cleaner' than diesel, but difficult to handle. Propane is a commonly used mass transit fuel and is nearly as energy dense as diesel. The issue at this point is figuring out how to make methanol or propane from natural gas 'at the source', meaning at the point of emission, so that the collected product is easy to transport. Methane emissions are being found with distressing frequency - there is considerable value in figuring out how to intercept these emissions and make them commercially useful.

At one end, the technologies for natural gas storage and transmission are getting more and more effective, but at the other end, NG conversion to liquid fuels is also getting easier.

Keyword search 'Lake Kivu Methane'.

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the company I mentioned is active in propane mobility too, but main business is related to a HPDI lng technology, whose benefit is to have identica torque power of a diesel truck but with emissions like a natural gas one

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(edited)

@Edoardo Di Giamberardino  CNG trucks were expected to be the next 'big thing' in the USA in the early 2000's, but the experiment didn't last.  Once you understand the economics of the US trucking industry it becomes obvious.  A haul tractor can last a very long time,  but after the first few years of travelling an average of 100,000 miles (160,000 km) per year they start to need more and more overhauls and maintenance.  Repairs in the US are expensive, because of the high cost of labor, and requirements for high quality parts.  Repairs in most of the rest of the world on the other hand are much cheaper.  As a result, trucking companies in the USA purchase new tractors, run them for 3-8 years (depending on distance driven per year) then sell them, usually to south and central America, the Caribbean and Africa.  There they serve for another 10-15 years or so receiving a couple of major mechanical overhauls (which are affordable for the new operators) in the process before final retirement.  Unfortunately these places don't have the infrastructure to use tractors that run on natural gas, so they can't buy them at any price.  The US companies typically receive a 'used' sale value on their new tractors which is 30-40% of the price of a new tractor.  Without the ability to receive a residual value from the resale of the CNG tractors, US operators are stuck with a choice:

Pay enormous USA labor costs to keep the CNG tractors on the road domestically

Throw the  the CNG tractors away on a regular basis

Buy diesel tractors

The situations where this doesn't apply are for trucks which travel relatively short distances, and wear out before the drive train needs major service work.  This includes trash trucks, some delivery trucks, some city buses and 'short haul' freight services.  These are being converted to CNG in the USA, but they don't account for a very large portion of the overall fleet.  Otherwise, the US industry is sticking with diesels because the total cost of ownership is lower, and when you consider that the alternatives are basically wasteful of natural resources AND money you can hardly blame them.

European trucks typically travel much shorter distances per year than US trucks, so the math is different there.  China is using CNG trucks as a method of combating particulate air pollution, because for them it is cheaper than building more sophisticated diesel engines which do not emit large quantities of soot - they simply don't have the manufacturing capability to make large numbers of those kinds of engines at a reasonable price.   

Edited by Eric Gagen
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(edited)

On 5/21/2021 at 1:49 PM, Eric Gagen said:

@Edoardo Di Giamberardino  CNG trucks were expected to be the next 'big thing' in the USA in the early 2000's, but the experiment didn't last.  Once you understand the economics of the US trucking industry it becomes obvious.  A haul tractor can last a very long time,  but after the first few years of travelling an average of 100,000 miles (160,000 km) per year they start to need more and more overhauls and maintenance.  Repairs in the US are expensive, because of the high cost of labor, and requirements for high quality parts.  Repairs in most of the rest of the world on the other hand are much cheaper.  As a result, trucking companies in the USA purchase new tractors, run them for 3-8 years (depending on distance driven per year) then sell them, usually to south and central America, the Caribbean and Africa.  There they serve for another 10-15 years or so receiving a couple of major mechanical overhauls (which are affordable for the new operators) in the process before final retirement.  Unfortunately these places don't have the infrastructure to use tractors that run on natural gas, so they can't buy them at any price.  The US companies typically receive a 'used' sale value on their new tractors which is 30-40% of the price of a new tractor.  Without the ability to receive a residual value from the resale of the CNG tractors, US operators are stuck with a choice:

Pay enormous USA labor costs to keep the CNG tractors on the road domestically

Throw the  the CNG tractors away on a regular basis

Buy diesel tractors

The situations where this doesn't apply are for trucks which travel relatively short distances, and wear out before the drive train needs major service work.  This includes trash trucks, some delivery trucks, some city buses and 'short haul' freight services.  These are being converted to CNG in the USA, but they don't account for a very large portion of the overall fleet.  Otherwise, the US industry is sticking with diesels because the total cost of ownership is lower, and when you consider that the alternatives are basically wasteful of natural resources AND money you can hardly blame them.

European trucks typically travel much shorter distances per year than US trucks, so the math is different there.  China is using CNG trucks as a method of combating particulate air pollution, because for them it is cheaper than building more sophisticated diesel engines which do not emit large quantities of soot - they simply don't have the manufacturing capability to make large numbers of those kinds of engines at a reasonable price.   

IIRC, Europe also has relatively high diesel prices, among other incentives.

Is there a price of diesel fuel at which CNG/LNG trucking makes sense in the US?

It also sounds like only specific components of these trucks require overhaul. Could anything be done to reduce the cost of overhaul?

Likewise, the economics depend on how frequently those overhauls must be performed, which depends on the longevity of components. Has anything been done to extend the reliable life of vehicle components? If not, *could* anything be done?

There are also more stringent emissions requirements. Now that diesel requires expensive after-treatment - and I would presume these systems must also be replaced/overhauled periodically - does natural gas gain some economic ground?

Edited by BenFranklin'sSpectacles
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7 minutes ago, BenFranklin'sSpectacles said:

IIRX, Europe also has relatively high diesel prices, among other incentives.

Is there a price of diesel fuel at which CNG/LNG trucking makes sense in the US?

It also sounds like only specific components of these trucks require overhaul. Could anything be done to reduce the cost of overhaul?

Likewise, the economics depend on how frequently those overhauls must be performed, which depends on the longevity of components. Has anything been done to extend the reliable life of vehicle components? If not, *could* anything be done?

There are also more stringent emissions requirements. Now that diesel requires expensive after-treatment - and I would presume these systems must also be replaced/overhauled periodically - does natural gas gain some economic ground?


The comment about the price of diesel in Europe is definately true, although don't forget that by US standards their natural gas is also expensive.  There probably IS a price point at  which it makes sense in the US, but I don't know exactly where it is.  The cost of fuel in the US for diesel or natural gas in the US is lower in both cases, but the distance travelled per year tends to be much higher so the whole math situation is going to be very different.

The specific components and economics of overhauls are for the transmissions (rebuild, or replace at regular intervals) and the engine blocks (rebuild or replace at regular intervals) as well as all other moving parts (belts, pulleys, fuel injectors, brakes, electronic fuel injection systems, etc.) However all these systems except for small parts of the fule injectors are 100% common between diesel and natural gas fueled equipment - any improvements do not change the competitive economics of fuel switching for trucks - they only change the economics of the trucking industry as a whole.  Lots is done in this area, because it is one of the 2 major selling points for heavy duty diesel engines (the other being fuel economy) the initial purchase price is a distant 3rd, because it the up front investment in high quality engines always pays for itself if it is fuel efficient and cheap and easy to work on (or unlikely to fail)

Emissions are identical.  All US trucks are now using ultra low sulfer diesel fuel, so the only emissions that you have to worry about are NOx and particulates.  In that regard, there is no difference in emissions controls - indeed because it tends to burn slightly hotter, diesel engines running on natural gas (instead of #2 fuel oil) tend to produce slightly more NOx, so there is no change in the emissions controls for either one.  

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10 minutes ago, Eric Gagen said:


The comment about the price of diesel in Europe is definately true, although don't forget that by US standards their natural gas is also expensive.  There probably IS a price point at  which it makes sense in the US, but I don't know exactly where it is.  The cost of fuel in the US for diesel or natural gas in the US is lower in both cases, but the distance travelled per year tends to be much higher so the whole math situation is going to be very different.

The specific components and economics of overhauls are for the transmissions (rebuild, or replace at regular intervals) and the engine blocks (rebuild or replace at regular intervals) as well as all other moving parts (belts, pulleys, fuel injectors, brakes, electronic fuel injection systems, etc.) However all these systems except for small parts of the fule injectors are 100% common between diesel and natural gas fueled equipment - any improvements do not change the competitive economics of fuel switching for trucks - they only change the economics of the trucking industry as a whole.  Lots is done in this area, because it is one of the 2 major selling points for heavy duty diesel engines (the other being fuel economy) the initial purchase price is a distant 3rd, because it the up front investment in high quality engines always pays for itself if it is fuel efficient and cheap and easy to work on (or unlikely to fail)

Emissions are identical.  All US trucks are now using ultra low sulfer diesel fuel, so the only emissions that you have to worry about are NOx and particulates.  In that regard, there is no difference in emissions controls - indeed because it tends to burn slightly hotter, diesel engines running on natural gas (instead of #2 fuel oil) tend to produce slightly more NOx, so there is no change in the emissions controls for either one.  

Interesting.

It sounds like you have some experience in the transportation industry; may I ask what you do?

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14 minutes ago, BenFranklin'sSpectacles said:

Interesting.

It sounds like you have some experience in the transportation industry; may I ask what you do?

Oilfield service - specifically well workover and coiled tubing.  My consulting company is epgsolutionsco.com I spent a large part of my career with integrated service companies, and regardless of anything else, the equipment all goes back and fort on fleets of trucks - ours or 3rd party hire.  In addition the basic driveline systems for most oil and gas service equipment is lifted directly from, or adapted from over the road trucking equipment.  You learn a lot about if if you don't want your organization to fail, and because there are so many failures any way, you learn a lot you wish you hadn't! 

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(edited)

On 3/29/2021 at 2:58 AM, Edoardo Di Giamberardino said:

Hello everyone,

it seems that Tesla Semi trucks won't be produced this year, so that the only option to decarbonize trucks may be CNG & LNG trucks. In China LNG trucks account for 10% of market share, in Europe 3-4% growing double digit. US market is still lagging..do you think US will ever catch-up? 

I wrote a few blog-articles on SeekingAlpha on natural gas mobility, focusing specifically on a company called Westport Fuel Systems. Let me know what you think.

https://seekingalpha.com/instablog/48761778-edwarddg/5507143-methane-biomethane-rng-potential-for-transport-sectors-decarbonization

https://seekingalpha.com/instablog/48761778-edwarddg/5507627-methane-biomethane-rng-potential-for-transport-sector-decarbonization-westport-fuel-systems

https://seekingalpha.com/instablog/48761778-edwarddg/5544801-lng-trucks-gaining-traction-in-europe-biomethane-narrative-westport-fuel-systems-still-room

https://seekingalpha.com/instablog/48761778-edwarddg/5570995-westport-fuel-systems-q4minus-2020-review-and-main-takeaways 

thanks,

Edoardo

Natural gas use should be the fuel of choice for transportation as well as electrical generation and heating. It is the best solution available. Now scientists are even figuring out how to produce hydrogen from it without CO2 emissions.  

I have thousands of links to natural gas stories that I have collected over the last eight years. Maritime ships are one of the most important uses, but any ICE vehicle can use CNG, LNG, or related gases. Part Eleven of Natural Gas Stories 

 https://docs.google.com/document/d/156PkEaVAhcZJzgthgjFaNwz88gZIVx4XXG1nBlWq04I/edit

Natural Gas Vehicles https://docs.google.com/document/d/1DjSFf0dyd74Wx-OdtmNaHfGiRCmDgrZmRwyIR9NNv8c/edit

Biogas AKA Green Gas Production https://docs.google.com/document/d/1N-TLMeHsKYBCirxS0vbqMGHpU2SmyLuCc7bqp8eYXVM/edit

C7U2FC-51nfKJ7LijjWOAseVeCgJM16Ls63on5geNnO44C2dwtLU5ru_UfyDYmKrz3SXvcIQa1-PeWsLU1OwWOamIKXAlz18idOk_kOrNnuGNz2PC6C19vKXpXPD3iffljNxZL-Z

 

Edited by ronwagn
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On 3/29/2021 at 10:03 AM, Meredith Poor said:

If you aren't familiar with the Sabatier reaction, look this up. The chemical reaction is 4H2 + CO2 -> CH4 + 2H2O. This has been understood since the late 1890's and Raney Nickel-based reactors have been around since the 1920's.

There are various processes for converting methane to methanol or propane, either of which is a liquid fuel without extreme pressure. Methanol is liquid at room temperature and propane becomes a liquid at relatively incidental pressures. Recent discoveries (recent meaning since the start of 2021) are showing new ways of producing methanol from methane under room temperature and pressure conditions, or producing methanol directly from CO2.

Methanol (COH4) breaks up into synthesis gas (CO + 2H2) with mild heating, and is usually used as the starting point for making gasoline or diesel using Fischer-Tropf synthesis.

Natural gas is 'cleaner' than diesel, but difficult to handle. Propane is a commonly used mass transit fuel and is nearly as energy dense as diesel. The issue at this point is figuring out how to make methanol or propane from natural gas 'at the source', meaning at the point of emission, so that the collected product is easy to transport. Methane emissions are being found with distressing frequency - there is considerable value in figuring out how to intercept these emissions and make them commercially useful.

At one end, the technologies for natural gas storage and transmission are getting more and more effective, but at the other end, NG conversion to liquid fuels is also getting easier.

Keyword search 'Lake Kivu Methane'.

We have LNG for that purpose. It can be derived from green biogas if desired, as can CNG. 

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On 5/21/2021 at 1:49 PM, Eric Gagen said:

@Edoardo Di Giamberardino  CNG trucks were expected to be the next 'big thing' in the USA in the early 2000's, but the experiment didn't last.  Once you understand the economics of the US trucking industry it becomes obvious.  A haul tractor can last a very long time,  but after the first few years of travelling an average of 100,000 miles (160,000 km) per year they start to need more and more overhauls and maintenance.  Repairs in the US are expensive, because of the high cost of labor, and requirements for high quality parts.  Repairs in most of the rest of the world on the other hand are much cheaper.  As a result, trucking companies in the USA purchase new tractors, run them for 3-8 years (depending on distance driven per year) then sell them, usually to south and central America, the Caribbean and Africa.  There they serve for another 10-15 years or so receiving a couple of major mechanical overhauls (which are affordable for the new operators) in the process before final retirement.  Unfortunately these places don't have the infrastructure to use tractors that run on natural gas, so they can't buy them at any price.  The US companies typically receive a 'used' sale value on their new tractors which is 30-40% of the price of a new tractor.  Without the ability to receive a residual value from the resale of the CNG tractors, US operators are stuck with a choice:

Pay enormous USA labor costs to keep the CNG tractors on the road domestically

Throw the  the CNG tractors away on a regular basis

Buy diesel tractors

The situations where this doesn't apply are for trucks which travel relatively short distances, and wear out before the drive train needs major service work.  This includes trash trucks, some delivery trucks, some city buses and 'short haul' freight services.  These are being converted to CNG in the USA, but they don't account for a very large portion of the overall fleet.  Otherwise, the US industry is sticking with diesels because the total cost of ownership is lower, and when you consider that the alternatives are basically wasteful of natural resources AND money you can hardly blame them.

European trucks typically travel much shorter distances per year than US trucks, so the math is different there.  China is using CNG trucks as a method of combating particulate air pollution, because for them it is cheaper than building more sophisticated diesel engines which do not emit large quantities of soot - they simply don't have the manufacturing capability to make large numbers of those kinds of engines at a reasonable price.   

If we were to provide training to mechanics and engineers to maintain natural gas engines there would be no problem. The problem is the lack of natural gas engine mechanics for both CNG and LNG. It is a simple problem to address. We just seem to lack leaders that see the need. Westport, and other companies around the world have all the technology and parts needed. Perhaps we should recruit some of them. Imagine training them in two year colleges. That goes for diesel mechanics and electric car mechanics too. America is way behind in training the mechanics that are needed for the future. So we end up junking our vehicles. 

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On 5/21/2021 at 1:49 PM, Eric Gagen said:

@Edoardo Di Giamberardino  CNG trucks were expected to be the next 'big thing' in the USA in the early 2000's, but the experiment didn't last.  Once you understand the economics of the US trucking industry it becomes obvious.  A haul tractor can last a very long time,  but after the first few years of travelling an average of 100,000 miles (160,000 km) per year they start to need more and more overhauls and maintenance.  Repairs in the US are expensive, because of the high cost of labor, and requirements for high quality parts.  Repairs in most of the rest of the world on the other hand are much cheaper.  As a result, trucking companies in the USA purchase new tractors, run them for 3-8 years (depending on distance driven per year) then sell them, usually to south and central America, the Caribbean and Africa.  There they serve for another 10-15 years or so receiving a couple of major mechanical overhauls (which are affordable for the new operators) in the process before final retirement.  Unfortunately these places don't have the infrastructure to use tractors that run on natural gas, so they can't buy them at any price.  The US companies typically receive a 'used' sale value on their new tractors which is 30-40% of the price of a new tractor.  Without the ability to receive a residual value from the resale of the CNG tractors, US operators are stuck with a choice:

Pay enormous USA labor costs to keep the CNG tractors on the road domestically

Throw the  the CNG tractors away on a regular basis

Buy diesel tractors

The situations where this doesn't apply are for trucks which travel relatively short distances, and wear out before the drive train needs major service work.  This includes trash trucks, some delivery trucks, some city buses and 'short haul' freight services.  These are being converted to CNG in the USA, but they don't account for a very large portion of the overall fleet.  Otherwise, the US industry is sticking with diesels because the total cost of ownership is lower, and when you consider that the alternatives are basically wasteful of natural resources AND money you can hardly blame them.

European trucks typically travel much shorter distances per year than US trucks, so the math is different there.  China is using CNG trucks as a method of combating particulate air pollution, because for them it is cheaper than building more sophisticated diesel engines which do not emit large quantities of soot - they simply don't have the manufacturing capability to make large numbers of those kinds of engines at a reasonable price.   

If we were to provide training to mechanics and engineers to maintain natural gas engines there would be no problem. The problem is the lack of natural gas engine mechanics for both CNG and LNG. It is a simple problem to address. We just seem to lack leaders that see the need. Westport, and other companies around the world have all the technology and parts needed. Perhaps we should recruit some of them. Imagine training them in two year colleges. That goes for diesel mechanics and electric car mechanics too. America is way behind in training the mechanics that are needed for the future. So we end up junking our vehicles. 

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https://lngprime.com/asia/chinas-lng-powered-road-transport-sector-shows-huge-growth/13275/

China’s LNG-powered road transport sector shows huge growth

 
February 26, 2021
 

China’s road transport sector has consumed nearly 13 million tonnes of liquefied natural gas last year as the number of LNG-powered vehicles continues to surge.

The world’s second-largest LNG importer has more than 3,000 LNG filling stations, ten times more when compared to 300+ stations in 21 countries across Europe, according to Shell’s latest annual LNG Outlook.

China’s fleet of LNG-fueled trucks and buses is nearing an unbelievable number of 600,000 vehicles, according to the report. LNG-fueled trucks, which number increased about four times since 2016, account for most of these vehicles.

To remind, China’s LNG imports hit an all-time high last year rising 11.5 percent year-on-year to 67.13 million tonnes.

Shell said in the report it expects the country’s announcement of a target to become carbon neutral by 2060 to continue driving up its LNG demand through the “key role gas can play in decarbonising hard-to-abate sectors, namely buildings, heavy industry, shipping and heavy-duty road transport.”

In addition, Europe has also seen a steady increase in LNG-powered trucks and currently has about 15,000 LNG-powered trucks in operation, the report said.

The report predicts European road LNG demand to reach 7.9 million tonnes by 2030. Bio-LNG would account for about 40% of this demand.

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On 5/21/2021 at 1:49 PM, Eric Gagen said:

@Edoardo Di Giamberardino  CNG trucks were expected to be the next 'big thing' in the USA in the early 2000's, but the experiment didn't last.  Once you understand the economics of the US trucking industry it becomes obvious.  A haul tractor can last a very long time,  but after the first few years of travelling an average of 100,000 miles (160,000 km) per year they start to need more and more overhauls and maintenance.  Repairs in the US are expensive, because of the high cost of labor, and requirements for high quality parts.  Repairs in most of the rest of the world on the other hand are much cheaper.  As a result, trucking companies in the USA purchase new tractors, run them for 3-8 years (depending on distance driven per year) then sell them, usually to south and central America, the Caribbean and Africa.  There they serve for another 10-15 years or so receiving a couple of major mechanical overhauls (which are affordable for the new operators) in the process before final retirement.  Unfortunately these places don't have the infrastructure to use tractors that run on natural gas, so they can't buy them at any price.  The US companies typically receive a 'used' sale value on their new tractors which is 30-40% of the price of a new tractor.  Without the ability to receive a residual value from the resale of the CNG tractors, US operators are stuck with a choice:

Pay enormous USA labor costs to keep the CNG tractors on the road domestically

Throw the  the CNG tractors away on a regular basis

Buy diesel tractors

The situations where this doesn't apply are for trucks which travel relatively short distances, and wear out before the drive train needs major service work.  This includes trash trucks, some delivery trucks, some city buses and 'short haul' freight services.  These are being converted to CNG in the USA, but they don't account for a very large portion of the overall fleet.  Otherwise, the US industry is sticking with diesels because the total cost of ownership is lower, and when you consider that the alternatives are basically wasteful of natural resources AND money you can hardly blame them.

European trucks typically travel much shorter distances per year than US trucks, so the math is different there.  China is using CNG trucks as a method of combating particulate air pollution, because for them it is cheaper than building more sophisticated diesel engines which do not emit large quantities of soot - they simply don't have the manufacturing capability to make large numbers of those kinds of engines at a reasonable price.   

https://lngprime.com/asia/chinas-lng-powered-road-transport-sector-shows-huge-growth/13275/

China’s LNG-powered road transport sector shows huge growth

 
February 26, 2021
 

China’s road transport sector has consumed nearly 13 million tonnes of liquefied natural gas last year as the number of LNG-powered vehicles continues to surge.

The world’s second-largest LNG importer has more than 3,000 LNG filling stations, ten times more when compared to 300+ stations in 21 countries across Europe, according to Shell’s latest annual LNG Outlook.

China’s fleet of LNG-fueled trucks and buses is nearing an unbelievable number of 600,000 vehicles, according to the report. LNG-fueled trucks, which number increased about four times since 2016, account for most of these vehicles.

To remind, China’s LNG imports hit an all-time high last year rising 11.5 percent year-on-year to 67.13 million tonnes.

Shell said in the report it expects the country’s announcement of a target to become carbon neutral by 2060 to continue driving up its LNG demand through the “key role gas can play in decarbonising hard-to-abate sectors, namely buildings, heavy industry, shipping and heavy-duty road transport.”

In addition, Europe has also seen a steady increase in LNG-powered trucks and currently has about 15,000 LNG-powered trucks in operation, the report said.

The report predicts European road LNG demand to reach 7.9 million tonnes by 2030. Bio-LNG would account for about 40% of this demand.

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12 hours ago, ronwagn said:

If we were to provide training to mechanics and engineers to maintain natural gas engines there would be no problem. The problem is the lack of natural gas engine mechanics for both CNG and LNG. It is a simple problem to address. We just seem to lack leaders that see the need. Westport, and other companies around the world have all the technology and parts needed. Perhaps we should recruit some of them. Imagine training them in two year colleges. That goes for diesel mechanics and electric car mechanics too. America is way behind in training the mechanics that are needed for the future. So we end up junking our vehicles. 

It's got nothing to do with training - mechanics in the USA are simply capable of demanding wages that make extensive rebuilding of diesel engines (any kind not just CNG powered) a dubious prospect.  Engine rebuilds are labor intensive, so it makes economic sense for a  motor user in a country like the USA where labor is expensive to sell off the old ones and buy new ones once the amount of maintenance they require reaches a certain level.  It's been this way since the dawn of the industrial revolution. New equipment gets built in the advanced high wage economies, then sold off to less advanced, lower wage economies when it gets a bit troublesome to maintain.  It's a GOOD thing because it's an indication that the US economy is so productive that it's literally wasteful to keep old stuff lying around.  It's also a good thing for the developing economies, because they get access to valuable capital goods which they can afford to maintain at an initial purchase price they can afford.  

The cycle only stops if innovation stops, or if the economy of the 'advanced' area fails to stay near the top.  In the first case, every region levels off,  in the second case, only the advanced economy falls down.  Either way, the continued flow of capital goods from the US to other places is a positive sign for the strength of the US economy. 

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2 minutes ago, Eric Gagen said:

It's got nothing to do with training - mechanics in the USA are simply capable of demanding wages that make extensive rebuilding of diesel engines (any kind not just CNG powered) a dubious prospect.  Engine rebuilds are labor intensive, so it makes economic sense for a  motor user in a country like the USA where labor is expensive to sell off the old ones and buy new ones once the amount of maintenance they require reaches a certain level.  It's been this way since the dawn of the industrial revolution. New equipment gets built in the advanced high wage economies, then sold off to less advanced, lower wage economies when it gets a bit troublesome to maintain.  It's a GOOD thing because it's an indication that the US economy is so productive that it's literally wasteful to keep old stuff lying around.  It's also a good thing for the developing economies, because they get access to valuable capital goods which they can afford to maintain at an initial purchase price they can afford.  

The cycle only stops if innovation stops, or if the economy of the 'advanced' area fails to stay near the top.  In the first case, every region levels off,  in the second case, only the advanced economy falls down.  Either way, the continued flow of capital goods from the US to other places is a positive sign for the strength of the US economy. 

I agree, I was conflating the basic maintenance needed to retrofit ICE's to natural gas and to keep them running. I do not have mechanics in my area to retrofit my Nissan 3500 van. Nor do I even have a local N.G. station. There are enough stations to get around in most larger areas though. Traveling around the country with CNG is not a problem except in very remote areas. Dual fuel systems solve that though. 

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(edited)

The re are areas where even CNG/LNG isn't clean enough.   PM 2.5 standards  to meet health risk in the Port Of Los Angles/Long Beach, Oakland-Bay area, and Houston Texas City, portage trucks are required to be hydrogen.   https://www.maritime-executive.com/article/hydrogen-powered-truck-begins-

In Houston the PTRA and Long Beach docks are using hydrogen locomotives.  You can expect no diesel for trucks or locomotives in the Central Valley  from Bakersfield north to Acampo  in the near future.  Central Valley PM2.5 level are the highest in the US since the ports at Long Beach, Bay area and Houston Texas City have cleaned up.  Salt Lake City is rapidly approaching those limits.

I should have said that the standards are for new equipment. Existing equipment in operation before 1/1/21 may operate until 1/1/27

Edited by nsdp
error in termination date for exisiting equipment.

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6 hours ago, nsdp said:

The re are areas where even CNG/LNG isn't clean enough.   PM 2.5 standards  to meet health risk in the Port Of Los Angles/Long Beach, Oakland-Bay area, and Houston Texas City, portage trucks are required to be hydrogen.   https://www.maritime-executive.com/article/hydrogen-powered-truck-begins-

In Houston the PTRA and Long Beach docks are using hydrogen locomotives.  You can expect no diesel for trucks or locomotives in the Central Valley  from Bakersfield north to Acampo  in the near future.  Central Valley PM2.5 level are the highest in the US since the ports at Long Beach, Bay area and Houston Texas City have cleaned up.  Salt Lake City is rapidly approaching those limits.

I should have said that the standards are for new equipment. Existing equipment in operation before 1/1/21 may operate until 1/1/27

well, I do not know if you read that the port of LA will equate Natural Gas trucks to ZEV trucks...it seems to me a good thing that goes into the direction or reducing particles emissions 

https://www.truckinginfo.com/10145104/port-of-long-beach-gives-low-nox-natural-gas-trucks-a-break

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On 6/3/2021 at 10:16 AM, ronwagn said:

I agree, I was conflating the basic maintenance needed to retrofit ICE's to natural gas and to keep them running. I do not have mechanics in my area to retrofit my Nissan 3500 van. Nor do I even have a local N.G. station. There are enough stations to get around in most larger areas though. Traveling around the country with CNG is not a problem except in very remote areas. Dual fuel systems solve that though. 

Ron on this topic of retro fitting gasoline engines to a lng/propane ....it is a bad concept. Without going into to much detail gasoline engines have been designed/ evolved to combust gasoline. 

Gasoline vs a LNG product combust differently, maybe explode differently would be a better example. Gasoline explodes slowly compared to LNG, meaning the timing needs to changed first, then the cams need to be changed at the same time....Those two events are critical to maximize the combustion/explosion. When done properly compression rations may well exceed 18.1 or higher. In short that would destroy the cast internals, the remedy would be forged internals.

Can one convert a gas engine over yes, but the conversion creates a weak enefficent engine...a slug.

Ford created a eco-tech engine, take a close look at that engine and it's design. It is the closest engine made to run on LNG. Notice a few things 10:1 compression,forged internals, variable cam timings, and direct injection. All that tech is used to combust gasoline efficiently and when done correct Ford was able to realize 375hp and 375 ft lbs of tourgue...out of 3 liters of engine. Pull up to 12000 lbs of weight out of a 3 litre engine. That is astounding, unheard only a few yrs ago. 

LNG would be able to run at perhaps 18/20:1 the results would be incredible, a 7.3 v8 might well run semis down the road. It is all about efficiency and reliability and of course the money it takes to get there.

 

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(edited)

6 hours ago, Eyes Wide Open said:

Ron on this topic of retro fitting gasoline engines to a lng/propane ....it is a bad concept. Without going into to much detail gasoline engines have been designed/ evolved to combust gasoline. 

Gasoline vs a LNG product combust differently, maybe explode differently would be a better example. Gasoline explodes slowly compared to LNG, meaning the timing needs to changed first, then the cams need to be changed at the same time....Those two events are critical to maximize the combustion/explosion. When done properly compression rations may well exceed 18.1 or higher. In short that would destroy the cast internals, the remedy would be forged internals.

Can one convert a gas engine over yes, but the conversion creates a weak enefficent engine...a slug.

Ford created a eco-tech engine, take a close look at that engine and it's design. It is the closest engine made to run on LNG. Notice a few things 10:1 compression,forged internals, variable cam timings, and direct injection. All that tech is used to combust gasoline efficiently and when done correct Ford was able to realize 375hp and 375 ft lbs of tourgue...out of 3 liters of engine. Pull up to 12000 lbs of weight out of a 3 litre engine. That is astounding, unheard only a few yrs ago. 

LNG would be able to run at perhaps 18/20:1 the results would be incredible, a 7.3 v8 might well run semis down the road. It is all about efficiency and reliability and of course the money it takes to get there.

 

I will agree to disagree. You certainly know more about most engines than I do. All I can say is that China and numerous other countries use CNG and LNG. They can do it. Westport can do it. The best marine engine manufacturers can do it to the largest engines. I provide the proof, yet you continue to say that you know better. 

Lots of people refuse to see a lot of truth. I have spent over 10 years researching the use of CNG and LNG. How much time have you spent. Here are nine thousand sources that I have on CNG and LNG only. I also cover over 225 other topics. How much research have you done on worldwide use of CNG, LNG, and all the improvements in technology that make it even better? The storage cylinders are lighter. Dual or triple fuel is used if desired. Combinations with a little diesel if needed etc. 

Section Eleven of Natural Gas Stories: https://docs.google.com/document/d/156PkEaVAhcZJzgthgjFaNwz88gZIVx4XXG1nBlWq04I/edit

All My Rants  allmyrants.org https://docs.google.com/document/d/1ipd1YlcDaA_E9QtLhUXJBPiobFcRx1Rgipny9rOPJZE/edit

Edited by ronwagn
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41 minutes ago, ronwagn said:

I will agree to disagree. You certainly know more about most engines than I do. All I can say is that China and numerous other countries use CNG and LNG. They can do it. Westport can do it. The best marine engine manufacturers can do it to the largest engines. I provide the proof, yet you continue to say that you know better. 

Lots of people refuse to see a lot of truth. I have spent over 10 years researching the use of CNG and LNG. How much time have you spent. Here are nine thousand sources that I have on CNG and LNG only. I also cover over 225 other topics. How much research have you done on worldwide use of CNG, LNG, and all the improvements in technology that make it even better? The storage cylinders are lighter. Dual or triple fuel is used if desired. Combinations with a little diesel if needed etc. 

Section Eleven of Natural Gas Stories: https://docs.google.com/document/d/156PkEaVAhcZJzgthgjFaNwz88gZIVx4XXG1nBlWq04I/edit

All My Rants  allmyrants.org https://docs.google.com/document/d/1ipd1YlcDaA_E9QtLhUXJBPiobFcRx1Rgipny9rOPJZE/edit

Ron the concept and implementation of LNG is a true winner, RETRO FITTING is a very bad concept, it leaves a bad taste in ones mouth....real bad.

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1 minute ago, Eyes Wide Open said:

Ron the concept and implementation of LNG is a true winner, RETRO FITTING is a very bad concept, it leaves a bad taste in ones mouth....real bad.

You really need to read up on what Westport and others have done. I am glad that diesel is now cleaner, so that is not really a problem for me as long as we are not forced to use battery powered trucks, buses etc. A diesel percentage can aid natural gas in going over the Rockies, the Grapevine, The Appalachins etc. It is not really needed but is a useful compromise 

My goal is to promote natural gas for the largest vehicles, and all the way down to pickup trucks and all the way up to locomotives and the largest ships. My goal is cleaner emissions and lower price. I do not buy into the CO2 global warming theory. There are a lot of signs that the American and other nations people do not either. That is my battle. I am not out to replace good clean diesel engines, it is to avoid nonexistent unaffordable battery engines and the waste of trillions of dollars that the taxpayers will pay and that will destroy our economy. 

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23 minutes ago, Eyes Wide Open said:

Ron the concept and implementation of LNG is a true winner, RETRO FITTING is a very bad concept, it leaves a bad taste in ones mouth....real bad.

Clean Diesel site for you: https://www.dieselforum.org/news/nearly-half-of-u-s-commercial-trucks-now-powered-by-near-zero-emissions-diesel-technology-delivering-climate-and-clean-air-benefits

Not as clean as LNG, or as cheap, but it has billions of loyal fans. 

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15 hours ago, Eyes Wide Open said:

Ron on this topic of retro fitting gasoline engines to a lng/propane ....it is a bad concept. Without going into to much detail gasoline engines have been designed/ evolved to combust gasoline. 

Gasoline vs a LNG product combust differently, maybe explode differently would be a better example. Gasoline explodes slowly compared to LNG, meaning the timing needs to changed first, then the cams need to be changed at the same time....Those two events are critical to maximize the combustion/explosion. When done properly compression rations may well exceed 18.1 or higher. In short that would destroy the cast internals, the remedy would be forged internals.

Can one convert a gas engine over yes, but the conversion creates a weak enefficent engine...a slug.

Ford created a eco-tech engine, take a close look at that engine and it's design. It is the closest engine made to run on LNG. Notice a few things 10:1 compression,forged internals, variable cam timings, and direct injection. All that tech is used to combust gasoline efficiently and when done correct Ford was able to realize 375hp and 375 ft lbs of tourgue...out of 3 liters of engine. Pull up to 12000 lbs of weight out of a 3 litre engine. That is astounding, unheard only a few yrs ago. 

LNG would be able to run at perhaps 18/20:1 the results would be incredible, a 7.3 v8 might well run semis down the road. It is all about efficiency and reliability and of course the money it takes to get there.

 

About LNG, that is why I recommend you to look at HPDI 2.0 of WPRT, in the links I do not go into the details, but the technology is proven and works with VOLVO in Europe

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