Dan Kieffer, director of emissions compliance for Paccar, said waste heat recovery and finding replacements for today’s auxiliary power units are challenges and opportunities for engine companies.
— Staff reports
Volvo plans 13-liter gas engine for 2014
Volvo Trucks announced in May plans to launch its own 13-liter liquefied natural gas engine for North America in 2014.
The new LNG engine’s advanced high-pressure diesel ignition technology will provide fuel efficiency gains compared with current natural gas products, the company says.
Combined with its previously announced offering of compressed natural gas-powered Volvo VNM and VNL model daycabs, the new engine will round out a complete range of natural gas-powered offerings.
The company is also testing another fuel that can be produced from natural gas, DME (dimethyl ether), which could become an attractive alternative for the North American market.
Through advanced high-pressure diesel ignition technology – using trace amounts of diesel to ignite the natural gas – Volvo’s LNG engine will deliver a 30 percent fuel efficiency improvement compared with spark-ignition engines, making it a viable alternative for demanding long-haul applications. The Volvo 13-liter LNG engine will also reduce greenhouse gas emissions by about 20 percent compared with current diesel products.
Volvo says the engine will accomplish these savings without sacrificing power, torque or fuel efficiency.
North America’s abundant supply of natural gas, and the reduced emissions and minimal aftertreatment CNG engines offer, make the technology suitable for customers operating in localized or closed-loop applications. To meet current demand, Volvo offers the CNG-powered VNM daycab equipped with a factory-installed Cummins ISL G engine.
The company also recently announced that it is operating natural gas-powered VNL demonstrator trucks. The larger, more robust VNL model features a 12-liter Cummins-Westport ISX12 G gas engine. Production of the natural gas-powered VNL daycab will begin in conjunction with commercial availability of the 12-liter gas engine in early 2013. These heavy-duty engines feature maintenance-free aftertreatment, requiring only a three-way catalyst to meet EPA 2010 emissions standards.
— Jack Roberts
Trucking adds 7,300 jobs in May
For-hire carriers added 7,300 payroll jobs in May, up from a revised 2,700-job increase in April, according to estimates from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Payroll employment in trucking was up 0.6 percent over April and 3.4 percent over May 2011. Employment is up by 109,100 jobs, or 8.8 percent, from the bottom in March 2010, but it remains 110,100 jobs, or 7.6 percent, below the peak in January 2007.
— Staff reports
COLORADO. The state is installing high-definition TV monitors at truck stops that will offer streaming video on roadway, weather and traffic conditions on major highways. Walmart Transportation has donated 20 42-inch monitors, and CDOT is installing software for the service, which began June 1 at Johnson’s Corner Truck Stop.
FLORIDA. Construction along a 9.4-mile stretch of I-75 in Sarasota County from north of River Road to State Road 681 is scheduled to be completed this summer. The project includes bridge construction and widening the interstate from four to six lanes.
INDIANA. A resurfacing project on I-70 in Clay and Putnam counties from six miles east of State Road 59 to three miles west of State Road 243 will cause lane restrictions until the end of the month.