#98-35

Contact: Kara Villamil, or Mona S. Rowe

FOR RELEASE APRIL 3, 1998

 

BNL PICKS FOUR COMPANIES TO DEVELOP NATURAL GAS FUEL TECHNOLOGIES FOR TRUCKS & SUV'S

 

UPTON, NY - Four contracts that will help make natural gas a more efficient, cheaper and more attractive fuel for trucks - and cut environmental pollution - have been signed by a quartet of companies and the U.S. Department of Energy's Brookhaven National Laboratory, through a project managed by DOE's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy.

BNL signed the contracts as the first step in a planned five-year project, valued at over $1.6 million per year. The project aims to develop alternative fuels, namely liquefied natural gas, as a feasible fuel for heavy vehicles, from pickup trucks and sport utility vehicles to 18-wheelers. Such vehicles account for more than half of today's oil use, and a large portion of the air pollution emitted by motor vehicles.

"If we can convert even a portion of America's heavy-vehicle fleet to natural gas, we'll cut a significant fraction of our country's dependency on imported oil," said Jim Wegrzyn, project manager at BNL. "These four contracts are a good start toward overcoming some of the remaining barriers to the use of liquefied natural gas in trucks and buses."

The contracts are being let as part of a project of DOE's Office of Heavy Vehicle Technologies, which picked BNL to work with industry to develop natural gas fuel systems. The four contracts are the first in a series of awards to be announced throughout the year.

The contracts are:

 

Brookhaven National Laboratory carries out basic and applied research in the physical, biomedical and environmental sciences and in selected energy technologies. Brookhaven is operated by Brookhaven Science Associates, a nonprofit research management organization, under contract with the U.S. Department of Energy.

 

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