Two Refrigerated carriers are working with Clean Power Technologies to help develop a hybrid fuel technology for transport refrigeration units that increases fuel efficiency while reducing emissions.

Clean Power Technologies, a developer of heat recovery and hybrid power systems to improve energy-efficiency and reduce vehicle emissions, is installing the Clean Energy Storage and Recovery (CESAR) system on the refrigeration units of trailers at Farm Fresh Marketing and East-West Express.

“The CESAR system captures otherwise wasted heat from the exhaust of a conventional combustion engine and modifies it through a heat recovery system to generate clean, superheated steam power for both motive and auxiliary power,” said Abdul Mitha, president and CEO of Calgary, Canada-based Clean Power Technologies. “Our hybrid engine is expected to provide 40% or better fuel efficiency, with corresponding or better reduction in the emission levels.”

Long-haul refrigerated carrier Farm Fresh Marketing is based in Jerome, Idaho. Headquartered in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, East-West Express is a national freight trucking company, predominantly transporting refrigerated food products across Canada.

Data collection

The refrigerated trailers outfitted with the CESAR systems will be used for detailed data collection and research. Road tests are scheduled to begin in late summer.

Clean Power Technologies hopes to commercialize its technology by late 2010 or early 2011, Mitha said. The company's primary business model is to license this technology to the reefer engine manufacturers, but it is open to working with other engine distributors.

“Research is an important step towards understanding the operational and environmental performance parameters of transport refrigeration units,” he said. “This is a unique technology that will help the trucking and grocery industries reduce their operating costs and increase their bottom line profit.”

From what it learns through the field work, Clean Power Technologies will refine the design and packaging of its exhaust heat capture, accumulator, and steam engine to ensure that, together, they meet or exceed the specifications of existing diesel engine systems.

CESAR's flexibility has enabled Clean Power Technologies to research and design a range of variants for different end applications — from cars and trucks to boats, and even military vehicles, where heat capture has anti-detection benefits.

The solution designed for Farm Fresh Marketing and East-West Express is a dual system unit that will operate when the truck is running with the refrigerated trailer attached, and also when the trailer is detached.

Clean Power Technologies also is conducting extensive research on transport refrigeration units at company headquarters.

“Our goal is to produce a technology that is not only fuel efficient and clean,” said Mitha, “but to be cost effective and profitable.”