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Texas LNG Transportation Production Plant Breaks Ground

A unit of Applied Natural Gas Fuels (ANGF) on Thursday broke ground for a liquefied natural gas (LNG) production facility in Midlothian, TX, south of Dallas-Fort Worth.

The milestone comes less than a year after ANGF acquired the 31-acre site (see Daily GPI, March 21).

Boasting up to five liquefiers and a production capacity of 86,000 LNG gallons/day, the plant is expected to be operational in mid-2015. It would provide onsite storage for 1.5 million gallons of LNG.

The ANGF unit, Applied LNG, said it will target end-users in the high-horsepower trucking, oil/gas production, rail, marine, remote power, and mining markets that are currently using diesel fuel.

ANGF CEO Cem Hacioglu said the Texas natural gas industry is "growing rapidly," making production and storage facilities ever-more vital. "Midlothian is a perfect location to build our first production platform in Texas," he said.

Koch Industries' Flint Hills unit and Stabilis Energy have announced plans to build 100,000 LNG gallon/day plants in George West and Odessa, TX, primarily aimed at displacing diesel use in oil/gas field operations (see Daily GPI, Oct. 6; April 14).

In another LNG development Thursday, British Columbia-based Corvus Energy said it has won a contract to retrofit a Norwegian LNG ferry, Fannefjord, into the world's first LNG battery hybrid ship. Siemens AS and Fjord1 announced the selection of Corvus to provide an energy storage system using 63 of its AT6500 advanced lithium polymer batteries.

Typically, LNG-diesel-electric ferries have one diesel engine and two LNG-fuelled main engines, a Corvus spokesperson said. "The conversion of the already efficient and clean LNG ferry to a battery hybrid form will reduce 'methane slip' and deliver even further reduced greenhouse gas emissions, fuel efficiency, lower maintenance costs, and optimized engine performance," the spokesperson said.

According to Corvus, Fannefjord will become the world's first LNG-battery hybrid ferry in operation.

Back in the United States, compressed natural gas (CNG) fuel tank maker Luxfer Gas Cylinders has introduced a lighter, more efficient Type IV CNG cylinder that will be used by Trilogy Engineered Solutions for Western Dairy Transport trucks. Reduced weight up to 13%-18% lighter is the main selling point on the new 26-inch-diameter tanks.

Along with the reduced weight, Trilogy CFO Matt Lawrence said the Luxfer cylinders have provided a 4-5% performance increase in terms of diesel gallon equivalents (DGE). Trilogy has purchased 20 Luxfer systems with a capacity of 120 DGEs, he said.

Western Dairy's CEO David Shelton called the weight savings for Luxfer cylinders mounted in lengths of 60 and 90 inches "a game-changer" for his trucking fleet.

In the first weeks of November, CNG stations have opened or been targeted for locations on both sides of the U.S.-Canada border. Canadian American Transportation (CAT) has identified two Canadian and three U.S. sites for Gain Clean Fuel CNG stations to support 100 trucks in the Quebec-based company's 325-truck fleet.

U.S. Oil is developing the Gain stations for CAT in Montreal, Toronto, Laredo, TX, Charlotte, NC, and Scranton, PA. U.S. Oil now has 38 stations open or under construction for Gain.

"We understand the importance of CNG in our industry, and this partnership is very important for CAT and our company's commitment to the future," said CAT President Daniel Goyette.

Elsewhere, the retail fueling/convenience store operator Love's Travel Stops opened its 10th fast-fill CNG station  in Burbank, OH, west of Akron along Interstate Highway 71. Love's General Manager Bill Cashmareck called the first location in Ohio an "ideal spot" to serve both professional truck drivers and general motorists.

In the consumer market for natural gas vehicles (NGV), American Honda announced that it has opened up fleet ordering for its 2015 dedicated-CNG Civic model. It will be a 1.8-liter four-cylinder, aluminum engine with multi-point fuel injections and a five-speed automatic transmission. The NGV Civics will have one fuel tank offering 8 GGE/gasoline gallon equivalents of CNG.

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