Trucker-founded firm gets $450,000 grant

Jill Dunn | November 15, 2010

Wisconsin Gov. Jim Doyle has awarded $450,000 to a company that provides idle-elimination systems and was founded by the 2006 Overdrive Trucker of the Year. 

On Oc. 21, Doyle announced the grant to expand Idle Free Systems’ production capabilities at its Watertown plant. The project will create 20 more jobs and is funded through the state’s economic development tax credits and State Energy Program, which is financed through federal stimulus funding.  

Robert Jordan, now Idle Free’s chief technology officer, received a patent for his Reefer Link technology in 2006 and used that system in the company’s electric auxiliary power units for reefers. The next year, the company introduced a battery-based APU that also works with dry vans.

In 2008, Wisconsin Energy Independence Fund granted $250,000 for further research on Idle Free’s Biodiesel Flow system. This technology allows biodiesel use anytime by ensuring consistent flow throughout a vehicle system, regardless of temperature or biodiesel blend.

Last year, the company introduced a new A/C unit for its electric APU, which delivers 10,000 BTUs.

Jordan began trucking in 1986 and became an owner-operator in 1993.