Aerofficient Receives Frost & Sullivan Innovation Award
Aerofficient has been awarded the coveted Frost & Sullivan 2012 North American Trailer Aerodynamics New Product Innovation Award for its Aerofficient Slider product. The product stands out for its ability to automatically expand and contract when the trailer’s wheel assemblies are moved forward and rearward.
According to lab and fleet testing, Aerofficient’s Slider technology achieved an increase in fuel savings of up to 80 percent in zero wind conditions with a trailer setting of 41 feet, compared to only having a standard side fairing installed. Generally, fleets can expect to see an approximate 7 percent increase in fuel economy compared to only using a fixed-side fairing, which provides on average 3 to 5 percent in fuel savings.
UPS Adds 40 Hybrid Vehicles to Fleet
United Parcel Service has added 40 new hydraulic hybrid vehicles to its fleet, 20 in Baltimore and 20 in Atlanta. The vehicles can achieve up to 35 percent improved fuel economy and up to 30 percent carbon dioxide emissions reduction over traditional diesel-powered vehicles.
Both deployments were supported in part by grants from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Clean Cities program, which aims to further the nation’s economic, environmental, and energy security by supporting local actions to reduce petroleum consumption in transportation.
The vehicles in Baltimore will be deployed immediately while the vehicles in Atlanta will be introduced before the end of 2012. “Our long-term goal is to minimize our dependence on foreign energy and one way we will get there is through the deployment of a wide variety of technologies and designs in our fleet,” stated Mike Britt, UPS director of alternative fuel vehicle engineering.
UPS currently operates 2,593 vehicles powered by alternative fuels or technology, including hybrid electric, electric, liquefied natural gas, compressed natural gas, bio-methane and propane-powered vehicles. As of 2011, the company’s alternative fuel and technology fleet has logged more than 240 million miles and is on track to reach UPS’s goal of 400 million miles by 2017
Counterfeit Gas Still a Concern for Reefer Equipment
The use of fake refrigerants in reefer containers serviced in Vietnam continues its fallout in the maritime industry. Investigators have determined that 1,181 reefer units serviced in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam during the first nine months of 2011 may be at risk. It appears that highly explosive R40 (methyl chloride gas) has been disguised as R134a gas and used during the servicing of reefer containers.
Last year, three containers exploded at the Vietnam’s Saigon New Port and another explosion occurred in Brazil, resulting in the deaths of three workers. Longshoremen at U.S. West Coast ports refused to handle any reefer that was serviced in Vietnam and the ban remains in place today.
The reason for the use of counterfeit gas could be traced back to the phase-out of HCFCs as a refrigerant several years ago. Many countries had a large stockpile of HCFCs and some found its way onto the black market where it was sold to dealers who altered it slightly so it could be re-sold as R134a.
“In the developing nations there was a surplus of HCFCs, which are very expensive to recycle and then they got into the black market where it was cheaper to get rid of it. The sources, according to the United Nations, are from South China, which is repackaging HCFCs as R134a and selling it globally, at a significant discount,” explained Mark Bennett, international moderator for the Container Operators Association and a speaker at the recent CoolLogistics Global Conference in Antwerp, Belgium.