SoCalGas and Onboard Dynamics announce second demonstration of new mobile natural gas compressor

January 15, 2019. Southern California Gas Company (SoCalGas) and Onboard Dynamics, Inc. (ObDI) announced the field demonstration of new mobile compressor technology that provides on-site backup and supplemental compression at natural gas fueling stations. The new compressor, called the GoFlo® CNG80, is now being demonstrated at the Antelope Valley School Transportation Agency in Lancaster, California, where 43 natural gas school busses refuel using the fueling station at AVSTA’s fleet yard. SoCalGas and ObDI are partnering to fund the demonstration project to validate the performance of the new mobile compressor, which they expect will further improve on-site refueling for natural gas fleet customers.

   “The new GoFlo mobile compressors increase reliability and resilience of natural gas fueling stations by helping mitigate the risk of electric power supply interruption,” said Yuri Freedman, SoCalGas senior director of business development. “This type of equipment will enhance the function of any fueling station and make refueling even easier for fleet operators who fuel with clean natural gas and renewable natural gas.”

   “The GoFlo compressor technology provides an affordable and reliable refueling solution for compressed natural gas (CNG) fleet operators that provides additional value to all customers including those with inadequate electric infrastructure or higher electricity rates,” said Rita Hansen, chief executive officer of ObDI. “This technology promises to offer both the backup capability and capacity increases that many CNG fleet operators need today.”

   “Antelope Valley schools switched to natural gas buses 36 years ago to help clean our air,” said Mike Breivogel, fleet manager for AVSTA. “Installation of the GoFlo compressor partially offsets use of our aging electric compressor, provides mobile and easily deployable backup capability, increases capacity of our pumps and reduces our operating costs.”

   The Antelope Valley School Transportation Agency installation represents the second phase of field demonstration of the new mobile compressor. In the first phase, field testing was conducted and completed at Mountain View School District (MVSD) in South El Monte, California. There, the GoFlo compressor enabled MVSD to improve on-site refueling of eight compressed natural gas (CNG) school buses, reduce vehicle fuel costs and improve driver productivity. The demonstration at MVSD provided information that led to product improvements of the commercial unit that is now running at AVSTA.

   The GoFlo compressor uses natural gas instead of electricity to operate, which increases its cost-effectiveness and allows it to provide backup in the event of an existing CNG compressor failure. It is also an economical way to expand CNG refueling capabilities without relying on a connection to an external electric power source to operate.