Tags
Fleets & Technology

New York in DME state of mind

A Mack Pinnacle running on Dimethyl Ether is being demonstrated for the first time at New York landfill

Haulers in the solid waste and recycling sector are on the forefront of alternative fuel development – no surprise, considering the vast mileage put on collecting garbage and recyclables in cities large and small.

While natural gas is the most advanced alternative fuel for many fleets, there are many more options on the horizon, including some that could conceivably use some of the products collected by the trucks being fuelled. One such product is in the testing stages with one of the largest sanitation departments in North America.

Mack Trucks has begun a demonstration project in conjunction with the New York Department of Sanitation and Oberon Fuels, testing the performance of a Mack Pinnacle truck powered by Dimethyl Ether (DME). DSNY is the first Mack customer to evaluate DME, which is a non-toxic, clean-burning alternative fuel.

 “We look forward to gathering data with DSNY and Oberon to better determine the performance and driveability of the DME-powered Mack Pinnacle model,” said Dennis Slagle, president of Mack Trucks. “We believe DME shows great promise, and we are pleased to be working with our longtime customer DSNY to evaluate the fuel as a viable alternative to diesel.”

DSNY will test the demonstration vehicle, a Mack Pinnacle Axle Back model equipped with an MP8 13-litre engine and Mack’s mDRIVE automated manual transmission, in the Freshkills Landfill, located on Staten Island. The test is expected to run for several weeks, and results will be available in mid-2017.

New York City recently announced a vision to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 80 percent in 2050 compared with 2005. In order to achieve this goal, the city must reduce 43 million metric tons of GHG emissions. When produced from organic waste, DME can reduce GHG emissions. 

“The New York City Department of Sanitation is committed to seeking opportunities to reduce our environmental footprint,” said Deputy Commissioner Rocco DiRico, DSNY. “DME could be one solution to help us achieve this goal, and we are pleased to be partnering with Mack Trucks on this endeavour.”

The DME alternative
DME has been the subject of significant research as a potential renewable fuel source. According to the International DME Association, the product – previously used in industries such as personal care, where it was used as an aerosol propellant – can be manufactured from a number of sources including biomass, waste and agricultural products. It can also be extracted from natural gas and coal. The end product is a clean gas that can easily be liquefied for transportation. 

During a 2016 media event with DSNY, Mack Director, Product Strategy Roy Horton explained that from a number of standpoints, DME is an excellent alternative to diesel fuel.
“From a compression ignited diesel engine standpoint, it’s something that you can use, with a little modification, in your diesel engines. Diesel fuel is somewhere around a cetane number of 45. DME is 55 to 60. So it’s a very good fuel for a compression ignited process,” Horton explained. “We do a little bit of modification with the fuel pump. We have to change some of the seals, and of course, the fuel tanks we’re storing onboard, and then some of the electronics.”

The composition of the fuel makes it easy to handle and maintain on a fleet of vehicles, Horton noted. “DME answers a lot of the challenges that have been faced by the natural gas industry,” he said. “It’s very much like propane. It’s not under high pressure. It’s not cryogenically cooled. It doesn’t vent. If you puncture a tank, it’s not going to explode.”
The fact that DME can be extracted from biomass is attractive to DSNY, which collects massive amounts of solid waste that has the potential for generation of landfill methane and other types of renewable gases.

“There are a number of companies that have the technology to convert organics to DME or natural gas, so obviously that would be a match made in heaven,” said DiRico during last year’s media event.

He noted that there is a need to consider regulatory issues before putting such fuels into operation. “Can we get the regulatory approval to use this fuel? We then need to get the necessary okays and authorizations to go ahead, dump and convert (garbage)… It’s a process.”

DSNY Commissioner Kathryn Garcia said that aspect of DME is appealing going forward.

“It fits into the whole concept of trash actually having value – it can be converted into energy or into things like compost, particularly on the food side,” she said. “Creating that closed loop is a very different way of thinking about waste than anyone has in the recent past.”

Oberon Fuels, which has partnered with Mack on development of the truck, noted that there is possibility to reduce greenhouse gases significantly through the use of DME. 
According to Oberon, when produced from local organic waste, DME can reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 68- to 101 percent compared to diesel, as calculated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and recently published by U.S. Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory. These greenhouse gas reductions make it one of the first fuels for heavy-duty trucking that can result in a net CO2 reduction. DME engines are also easier to maintain, offer excellent cold weather performance, and run quieter than diesel counterparts.

“This first-ever customer demonstration of a DME Mack truck is an excellent opportunity to showcase the potential of DME in real-world use cases,” said Rebecca Boudreaux, Ph.D., president of Oberon Fuels. “We commend the New York City Department of Sanitation and Mack Trucks for their leadership in this program, which we believe will advance the testing and adoption of the zero-soot, low carbon, emissions-reducing DME fuel to help cities around the world become more sustainable.” RPN

Company Info

Latest News

Sponsored Content

Are all excavators the same?

Among the top brands, many believe all excavators are the same. But when you look closely, you can spot the small differences in design that add up to huge differences in productivity and efficiency — differences that can boost your profitability. 


Read More

​McNeilus expands industry leading parts, service and support network

​McNeilus expands industry leading parts, service and support network

McNeilus Truck and Manufacturing, Inc. announced at WasteExpo 2018 this week in Las Vegas that they have expanded their industry-leading parts, service and support network. The expansion effort includes Rush Truck Centers as an additional authorized parts and service provider in the Arizona, Colorado, Kansas, Nevada and New Mexico markets.  McNeilus factory-trained technicians will continue to support all markets.

Read More

Alliance Tire launches new line of rugged Galaxy OTR tires

The Galaxy MGSR 200 S-pattern grader tire.

Alliance Tire Americas, Inc. (ATA) launched a rugged, new line of Galaxy brand radial off-the-road (OTR) tires at Waste Expo in Las Vegas. Built for the special demands placed on loaders, dozers, backhoes, foklifts, articulated dump trucks and graders, the Galaxy radial OTR line features all-steel radial construction for puncture resistance and reduced heat buildup, as well as special compound for longer service life, according to Brian Sheehey, Vice President of Marketing for ATA. The result is a line of tires that deliver outstanding performance and a lower total cost of ownership.

Read More

Food and packaging waste is no match for Tiger

Food and packaging waste is no match for Tiger

The Tiger Depackaging System, available in North America from Ecoverse, now comes in five different size configurations. This technology is designed to remove 99.6 percent of contaminants from organic fractions and is specifically designed for food waste and packaging recovery operations. Applications include composting anaerobic digestion, animal nutrition, recycling and repurposing. 

Read More

Tags
Fleets & Technology

Freightliner unveils EconicSD low-entry COE waste collection truck at WasteExpo

Freightliner Trucks has introduced the new EconicSD waste collection truck at WasteExpo this week. The Freightliner EconicSD is a modern, low-entry cab-over-engine (COE) waste collection truck for the North American market that provides superior safety, uptime and productivity. Freightliner Trucks is featuring the Freightliner EconicSD in booth #2617 at WasteExpo. The truck will be available for order as of summer, 2018.

Read More

Tags
Fleets & Technology
Solid Waste

​Bridgestone to showcase two new tires at WasteExpo 2018

​Bridgestone to showcase two new tires at WasteExpo 2018

Bridgestone Americas, Inc. is showing two new all-position radial tires at WasteExpo 2018 in Las Vegas, this week, April 24-26. The new Bridgestone M870 and Firestone FS860 tires are designed exclusively for the waste industry and will enter the market later this year. With these two products, Bridgestone says it has expanded its portfolio for the waste segment to provide innovative products at multiple price points. 

Read More

ZenRobotics Fast Picker reinforces line of heavy-duty waste sorting robots

ZenRobotics Fast Picker reinforces line of heavy-duty waste sorting robots

ZenRobotics, in conjunction with the company's participation at Waste Expo this week, has announced the latest addition to its line of intelligent waste sorting robots: the ZenRobotics Fast Picker for light material. According to the company, the new robot model is a result of decade-long experience in waste robotics and couples the most intelligent software with high-speed picking. Designed to improve the efficiency of MRF's, ZenRobotics Fast Picker is ideal for lightweight material such as packaging (LWP) and dry mixed recyclables (DMR).

Read More

Voith Turbo and Danieli Centro Recycling sign distribution agreement

Voith Turbo and Danieli Centro Recycling sign distribution agreement

 Voith Turbo, Inc., a specialist for drive solutions, systems and comprehensive services, and Danieli Centro Recycling, a worldwide leading manufacturer of recycling machinery, recently announced an agreement for Danieli to distribute Voith products and services to shredder operators. Customers can now single-source Voith quick-time delivery universal joint drive shafts (u-joint shafts), hydrodynamic couplings, SafeSet couplings and highly flexible couplings via Danieli.

Read More

Tags
Composting

Inner-city composting

The Hop Compost executive team between two HotRot vessels. From left to right: Chris Wong, CTO; Kevin Davies, Founder & CEO; and Meghan Perry, CFO.

Hop Compost built their first composting operation in Calgary in 2015. According to Kevin Davies, founder and CEO, due to their location in the city, at 17A Street, theirs is currently the most inner-city compost facility in Canada. 

Read More