WOODSTOCK — This southwestern Ontario city of 44,000 is the first in Canada to deploy hydrogen technology from dynaCERT designed to cut greenhouse gas emissions and save fuel.
Beginning this month, the Toronto-based company’s hydraGEN Technology will be installed on the diesel engines of a city bus and a recycling packer truck for a trial period. The units cost about $20,000 and the municipality will use gas-tax funds to pay for it.
As municipal governments look for ways to combat climate change, dynaCERT says its tech will cut carbon monoxide emissions by 47 per cent, carbon dioxide by 10 per cent and fuel consumption by 19 per cent. It also cuts emissions of nitrous oxide by 89 per cent and the particulate that makes black smoke by 55 per cent.
If the tech saves six to 10 per cent in fuel costs it is a win for the municipality, said Taylor Crinklaw, the director of public works in Woodstock.
“If we cover that we will see a financial gain,” said Crinklaw in an interview Tuesday.
Reducing greenhouse gas emissions and maintenance costs for the vehicles are also important, he said.
DynaCERT spent $60 million and 16 years to develop the hydrogen technology that makes engines run more efficiently. On big trucks the tech is contained inside a suitcase-sized box that is attached to the vehicle. On city buses the box is about half that size. It usually takes less than three hours to install, and works on trucks, buses and generators.
Once it is bolted to the vehicle the hydraGEN unit produces pure hydrogen and pure oxygen on demand to make the engine much more efficient, said Jim Payne, dynaCERT’s president and chief executive officer.
The hydraGEN unit has a computer that communicates with the vehicle’s computer to maximize the engine’s burn, he said.
About the three weeks ago the United Nation’s smart sustainable cities program approved dynaCERT’s technology. Since then, many cities in Europe and elsewhere have contacted the company.
The tech was already deployed in one European city, and dynaCERT is in negotiations with many others, said Payne.