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Conference report: Transportation Technologies and Fuels Forum 2013

23 February 2013

The most recent Transportation Technologies and Fuels Forum (TTFF), an information exchange mechanism for transportation energy research in the US and Canada, was hosted by Natural Resources Canada in Ottawa, Ontario on February 5 and 6, 2013.

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Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) took the opportunity to highlight the Natural Gas Use in the Canadian Transportation Sector Deployment Roadmap prepared by the Natural Gas Use in Transportation Roundtable. The Roadmap focuses on expanding the use of natural gas across the Canadian transportation sector. Among other things, it recommends:

  1. temporary fiscal measures to offset the capital cost premium of natural gas vehicles,
  2. the timely development of key corridor infrastructure consistent with projected demand to enable the introduction of natural gas into over-the-road trucking,
  3. wider access to private onsite refuelling stations, and
  4. further demonstration projects to address technical barriers, develop standards, and conduct feasibility studies and business cases.

As part of the Roadmap development, the Roundtable issued a contract to Standards Council of Canada (SCC) to document and analyze existing codes, standards, and regulations for CNG Vehicles, CNG refuelling infrastructure, and fuel quality. Among other recommendations, the SCC report recommended that Canadian regulators adopt ISO standards for natural gas vehicle fuel quality.

It was also noted during the meeting that Transport Robert, of Boucherville, Quebec is currently running 74 LNG trucks between Montreal, QC and Mississauga, ON. Additional trucks are scheduled to be brought in later in 2013. In October 2010, Transport Robert issued a purchase order for 180 Peterbilt LNG trucks featuring the Westport HD Systems.

At the end of the second day, a natural gas panel discussion stressed the need for harmonization of CNG fuel system, refuelling hardware and tank fill pressures. Also, current cylindrical pressure vessels limit vehicle design and tank installation flexibility. Fuel tank designs that can be better incorporated into the vehicle are needed.

Concerence website: transportationforum.net