NGVConnection Newsletter - July 2014


 


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How and Why Is Oil Getting Through Your Vehicle’s Coalescing Filters?

By Robin Skibicki, Marketing Coordinator, NGVi    


Perspectives With Joe Marinaccio, Titeflex Commercial

By Kasia McBride, Marketing Manager, NGVi


TiteflexTiteflex Commercial is a flexible PTFE (Teflon) hose company specializing in the transfer of fluids and gases. Their primary markets include the Aerospace, Automotive, and Industrial markets. Titeflex's products are highly specialized and carry the highest quality standards for each market they serve. The company has been a part of the CNG/NGV market for almost 20 years.
NGVi recently had the opportunity to sit down with Joe Marinaccio, Product Marketing Manager at Titeflex, to learn more.

For those new to the Titeflex brand, can you give a brief review of your offering?

We have a fairly diverse offering of flexible hosing products that answer any of our customers’ demands and needs. Our products range from low-pressure convoluted hoses suitable for vacuum and suction to high-pressure hoses that see 24,000 psi and can be used in the harshest environments. In the CNG/NGV market, our hoses are seen on a great number of NGVs within the engine and as fuel lines.  We are also producing a product that is extremely flexible and user-friendly for the growing dispenser market.

What are the distinguishing features of the CNG/NGV applications manufactured by Titeflex, and what sets them apart from your competitors? What are their benefits?

Titeflex hoses are made of PTFE, whereas our competitors mainly use nylon. Our hoses are braided by stainless steel wire which makes them extremely durable and flexible. Their application for on-board vehicles can withstand extreme temperatures making them suitable for “hot zones” like in the engine compartment of the vehicle. For dispenser applications, our hoses maintain their conductivity throughout the life of the hose, meaning you do not need to go through monthly routine checks as you do for nylon.

Can you discuss the advantages of steel braid technology used in your hoses?

The steel braid technology allows the hose to be more flexible and easier to work with in tight spots. This advantage is realized both on vehicles where the technician might need to move the hose around the engine, etc., and at the dispenser for the end user to navigate from the pump to the fuel receptacle. The steel braid also protects the hose from environmental conditions such as ozone or UV exposure. Most importantly, it protects the hose from kinking and puncture, as well as keeping the integrity of the hose intact. 

I read that AFV Natural Gas Fuel Systems is now a certified manufacturer of Titeflex CNG hose assemblies. Could you tell us a little about this affiliation and how you work together?

We are proud to partner with AFV Natural Gas Fuel Systems as they are a trusted name in the NGV market. They are certified to assemble our product for their end users under the CSA certificate. In the past, they were buying assemblies directly from us, but are now able to purchase our bulk hose to make their own assemblies for the NGV market.  It allows them to be more flexible in their workflow and helps us focus on our customers who require assembly work from us.

What are your thoughts about the growth of the natural gas vehicle industry in North America?

Growth still seems fairly slow, but we have seen many great accomplishments in the past five years. With the increase in infrastructure and more heavy-duty fleets switching to CNG, I feel very positive about the outlook of the industry in North America.

Tell us how your company is responding to the increasing demand for CNG fueling stations in North America.

We are seeing the increase in demand for infrastructure and we are very serious about becoming a part of that call. We are certifying our hose product to CSA 4.2 which will be the proper certification to enter the dispenser hose market. We believe we have the best product to offer fueling stations and to help grow the needed increase in infrastructure of CNG as a transportation fuel.

How have changes in the NGV and fueling industry influenced your company’s production? Have they changed its priorities?

The NGV market certainly had its hot and cold periods as it relates to our production for the market. We feel that it has a lot to do with government incentives for the overall industry and also companies we service winning (or losing) business at the front-end. Even with the ebbs and flows of the market, we still hold the NGV industry as a very high priority for us as a company. We are serious about the market and ready to grow with the industry as it matures.

What recent news or achievements have you seen anywhere within the NGV industry that excite you?

The most exciting news and achievements I have seen from the NGV industry is from the transfer of natural gas to locations that are not on actual pipelines. The “virtual pipeline” allows companies that have no access to CNG to take advantage of the lower cost fuel and cleaner alternative to oil. They are using CNG not only as a transportation fuel, but as a boiler fuel to heat and power their facilities. I find this to be innovative and very beneficial for the overall market by expanding the availability of CNG to users beyond pipelines.

Tech Series on CNG High-Pressure Systems: Part 1 - Fill Receptacles
By Kasia McBride, Marketing Manager, NGVi

Since one of the main characteristics of CNG vehicles is their high-pressure fuel system, NGV technicians are required to fully understand specific safety standards and procedures and know how each component within the fuel system should operate. Specifically, the high-pressure side of the fuel system includes the fueling receptacle(s), defueling receptacle, check valves, quarter-turn valves, mechanical gauge(s), cylinder valves, storage cylinders, PRDs, solenoids, coalescing filter, lines, fittings and high-pressure regulators.

This article is the first in a series which provides technicians with the information they need to better understand the components included in the high-pressure side of the CNG fuel system. It also provides details on safety procedures--as well as some useful tips for maintaining NGVs.

The Fill Receptacle

Each CNG-powered vehicle is equipped with one or more fuel receptacles designed to meet the NGV-1 standard. This standard, established in 1993, defines the external size, location and design of the fastening groove, and the type of valve. It ensures a mechanical fit between fill nozzles and receptacles used for CNG vehicles.

These receptacles are a quick-disconnect style, made of stainless steel, and are designed for either 3,000 or 3,600 psi operation. They have a one-way check valve built in which prevents the backflow of gas (which would be at high-pressure). For faster refueling, heavy-duty vehicles may be equipped with multiple fill receptacles with a larger diameter option.

The service pressure of a vehicle’s CNG fuel system is recorded on a durable, readily visible label at the fueling connection receptacle on the vehicle. Based on the service pressure for which they are designed, CNG dispenser nozzles are sized and color-coded: 3,000 psi nozzles are blue and 3,600 psi nozzles are yellow. 

This color coding helps to prevent overpressurization of a 3,000 psi cylinder. A vehicle with a 3,600 psi system can be filled with a 3,000 psi nozzle (blue), but a 3,000 psi vehicle cannot be filled with a 3,600 psi (yellow) nozzle. There is a one millimeter difference in diameter between a 3,600 psi receptacle and a 3,000 psi receptacle, which prevents the use of a 3,600 psi nozzle from filling a 3,000 psi vehicle.

One of the main safety procedures for CNG fill receptacles is regular leak checking. An electronic leak check must be conducted during the federally required CNG fuel system inspections after every three years or 36,000 miles, or after any fire or accident. Some manufacturers and fleet operators recommend leak checking more frequently, such as annually or semi-annually. Additionally, each time a vehicle is brought into the maintenance facility, a receptacle leak check must be performed prior.

In order to ensure a gas-tight seal between the receptacle and fueling nozzle, an O-ring is fitted in the receptacle. Drivers and technicians must remember to visually check O-rings before each fueling. If the O-ring is missing or damaged, it must be replaced prior to fueling, otherwise leakage may occur. Also, in cold temperatures, O-rings can lose their elasticity and become dislocated when the nozzle is removed after fueling. In many cases, ice can form in receptacles and cause the check valve to hang open when the fueling nozzle is removed. Sometimes the ice can be cleared by pushing the nozzle back and removing it again, but paying attention to the O-ring’s condition on the receptacle is extremely important in order to avoid any leakage issues.

To improve safety in the event of a drive-away (where the vehicle driver forgets to disconnect the fueling nozzle from the receptacle before leaving), the receptacle must be mounted securely enough to withstand more than 150 pounds of pull force from the fueling nozzle. To prevent this from happening, CNG fueling hoses are designed to release at 110 pounds.

Finally, natural gas used for vehicular applications, and delivered from a CNG fueling station, must be free of any solid material, water, or oil. The easiest place to check for this is at the receptacle, which should be visually inspected for oil routinely. The heart of the natural gas fueling station is the compressor and most compressors require lubrication (oil). Over time, it is likely that some amount of the lubricant could leak into the fuel stream (unless the station is extremely well-maintained). Any accumulation of oil in or around the receptacle is a sign of oil carryover from the CNG compressor, and the oil may be transferred to the vehicle during the routine fueling process. Oil in the CNG fuel stream onboard vehicles can cause serious operational problems and damage—therefore, monitoring for oil at the receptacle is essential.

More information about receptacles and other high-pressure components of the CNG fuel system is covered in-depth in NGVi’s Heavy-Duty and Light Duty NGV Maintenance and Diagnostics Classes. For more information about NGVi’s training programs, click here.


CNG Fuel Price Report
From Clean Cities Alternative Fuel Price Report published by Argonne National Laboratory for DOE's Clean Cities Program

Overall Average Fuel Prices (as of April 2014)

 

Nationwide Average Price for Fuel This Report

Nationwide Average Price for Fuel Last Report

Change in Price This Report vs. Last Report

Units of Measurement

Gasoline (Regular)

$3.65

$3.34

$0.31

per gallon

Diesel

$3.97

$3.89

$0.08

per gallon

CNG

$2.15

$2.09

$0.06

per GGE


NGVs and CNG in the News

Love's Expanding Compressed Natural Gas Refueling Footprint in Oklahoma--NGTNews.com


Booneville Pursues Natural Gas Powered Vehicles
--WTVA.com


New GAIN Clean Fuel Station to Power Delco Foods Fleet
--SupplyDemandChainExecutive.com


Altech-Eco Now Offers 100% CNG-Powered F-250/350 Trucks
--NGVJournal.com

 

 

To read more, click here.


Upcoming Training from NGVi

NGV Technician and Fleet Operations Safety Training

September 9, 2014 | Clearwater, FL
September 23, 2014 | Canonsburg, PA


One-day session that teaches you the elements involved in the safe maintenance practices, fueling procedures, and operation of NGVs.

REGISTER>>>


CNG Fuel System Inspector Training

September 10-11, 2014
|
Clearwater, FL
September 24-25, 2014
|
Canonsburg, PA

Two-day session that provides you with the proper techniques for inspecting CNG fuel systems, including on-board compressed natural gas fuel storage cylinders.


REGISTER>>>


CNG Fueling Station Design Training 

September 23-24, 2014
|
Chicago, IL
October 6-7, 2014
|
Las Vegas, NV

Two-day course that offers the detailed technical information needed to successfully size, design and specify a CNG fueling station.


REGISTER>>>


CNG Fueling Station Operation and Maintenance Training

September 25-26, 2014
|
Chicago, IL


Two-day session that provides you with the proper techniques for operating and maintaining CNG fueling stations to help avoid oil carryover and water in the natural gas stream.


REGISTER>>>


 



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Upcoming Training

 

Level 1: NGV Essentials
and Safety Practices

March 28, 2017
Charlotte, NC

Level 2: CNG Fuel System
Inspector Training

March 29-30, 2017
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Level 3: Heavy-Duty NGV Maintenance
and Diagnostics Training

April 10-11, 2017
Egg Harbor, NJ

Level 2: CNG Fuel System
Inspector Training

April 12-13, 2017
Egg Harbor, NJ

CNG Fueling Station
Design Training

April 24-25, 2017
Spring Valley, NV

CNG Fueling Station Operation
and Maintenance Training

April 26-27, 2017
Spring Valley, NV

Level 1: NGV Essentials
and Safety Practices

May 9, 2017
Denver, CO

Level 2: CNG Fuel System
Inspector Training

March 10-11, 2017
Denver, CO

 

 

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Natural Gas Vehicle Institute is North America’s leading provider of training and consulting on natural gas as a transportation fuel.

Our services address the full range of natural gas vehicle and fueling issues, including:

Technical consulting services – Sizing and designing compressed natural gas fueling stations, vehicle assessments and technical assistance for fleets, CNG fueling station troubleshooting, natural gas vehicle maintenance facilities upgrades, liquefied natural gas fleet and fueling management.

Technical training – NGV Essentials and Safety Practices, CNG Fuel System Inspector Training, Heavy-Duty NGV Maintenance and Diagnostics Training, Light-Duty NGV Maintenance and Diagnostics Training, CNG Fueling Station Operation and Maintenance Training, CNG Fueling Station Design Training and CNG/LNG Codes and Standards Training for Fire Marshals and Code Officials.

 

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