Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG), could be a way for the logistics industry to help to save the planet – one vehicle at a time.
What is LNG and how is it used as fuel?
Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) is one of the world's fastest growing energy sources. It's the cleanest burning fossil fuel and the gas can be found in underground reservoirs around the globe.
LNG is mostly comprised of methane, with small amounts of ethane, propane, butane and non-combustibles. To be able to use, impurities are removed and the gas purified, leaving methane, ethane and propane to be used as fuel.
The purified gas is cooled down to -161 degrees Celsius, to form a liquid, which is then transported, stored and used as fuel.
Will LNG have an impact on the customer’s experience?
Head of Operations at Pall-Ex, Paul Pegg, responds, “An important part of low emissions vehicles is ensuring that the driving experience and performance do not suffer.”
Account Manager at Volvo, Darren Newman, says, “Sustainability needn’t bring additional cost or complication to heavy transport operations, quite the contrary in fact. The Volvo LNG solution drives exactly like a diesel engine vehicle.”
Are there any user differences between driving a standard HGV/LGV compared to one run on LNG?
Pall-Ex driver, Mahesh Patel, responds, “I was excited to get the opportunity to try this out. The truck was very similar to the traditional diesel HGV I’m used to, and the fact it is environmentally friendly is a big positive.
What has been the reason for choosing an LNG-powered truck, as opposed to say, an electric one?
Paul notes, “Electric lorries are currently not an option for Pall-Ex. The battery technology is not as advanced we need it to be, causing too many delays in a world where consumers expect the fastest possible delivery.”
Darren says, “Pallet transport has always been an extremely competitive sector and the Volvo LNG trial recently conducted with Pall-Ex proved it is possible to improve efficiency and sustainability with Volvo’s LNG technology.”
Will using LNG-powered engines save money, too?
Paul has noticed a positive change, “Since we started using the vehicle, we have made significant savings every week which is exciting.”
Darren responds, “20% less carbon and 30% lower fuel cost are possible with our unique compression ignition LNG engines, and LNG attracts a £0.40p per litre reduction in fuel duty relative to diesel.
What else have you learnt from the LNG trial?
Mahesh notes, “All drivers need to drive as economically as possible to save fuel, money and to reduce emissions and this new kind of power is another tool to help us reduce our emissions.”