LNG fueling robot concept

LNG fueling

Liquid Natural Gas (LNG)

Natural gas is considered the cleanest fossil fuel, because there is relatively the least amount of CO2 released during combustion. Unfortunately, it is the transportation and distribution of natural gas which makes it quite inefficient for the transportation sector to use because of the large volume of the medium. By cooling natural gas to cryogenic temperatures of approximately -162° C, the volume will decrease with a factor 600. The final product is then called Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG).

LNG Fueling

The introduction of LNG as a new fuel for the transport sector brings several technological challenges. An important challenge is the LNG fueling process. Compared to diesel filling this procedure is more complex and more dangerous because of the extreme temperatures. Because of this, only drivers who have received instruction and a certificate are authorized to LNG fueling in self-service stations. An additional problem is the difference between operator’s instructions and procedures between self-filling LNG stations.

Automated fueling of LNG

In order to solve these problems Rotec Engineering B.V. is asked to develop a robotic LNG fueling system for a vehicle tank. It should also incorporate automated billing with the aid of RFiD recognition. Never before has a robotic filling system been developed for LNG. This development can provide significant benefits for ease of use, efficiency and safety and thereby facilitate the acceptance of Liquefied Natural Gas as a fuel. Before mid-2019 there must be two proven robot prototypes. One installed in Germany and one in the Netherlands.

LNG Pilots project

This project is part of a larger project “LNG Pilots”. This project aims to develop more products and processes and innovations in the field of CO2 reducing technologies. The project involves a total of 36 organizations of which 29 SME companies, two large companies, five universities and institutes, and three clusters.

For more information, please take a look at our project page.