San Francisco to Demonstrate Next Generation Westport HPDI Truck Technology

Publish date: 
Wednesday, October 5, 2005

San Francisco to Demonstrate Next Generation Westport HPDI Truck Technology

(October 5, 2005)

VANCOUVER, BC – Westport Innovations Inc. (TSX:WPT) today announced a new agreement and expanded commitment from the City of San Francisco and Norcal Waste Systems Inc., the city's refuse collection, recycling and transfer company, to demonstrate and deploy Westport's most advanced natural gas technology for heavy-duty trucks through to 2011. Goals of the program include improving combustion and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.


As part of its commitment, SF Recycling & Disposal, a Norcal subsidiary, will upgrade three of its 13 heavy-duty transfer trucks currently operating on Westport's first-generation High Pressure Direct Injection (HPDI) technology. The new trucks will incorporate several major improvements over those first-generation vehicles, including enhanced vehicle performance, lower emissions, higher fuel economy, and reliability. New features include Westport's proprietary low heat-leak LNG tanks with integrated LNG pumps, and higher pressure improved common-rail injection system for better combustion and emissions at all operating conditions.



Since they were first put into service in 2001, the transfer trucks, fuelled by liquefied natural gas (LNG), have logged almost five million miles (eight million kilometres) and reduced fleet emissions by approximately 30 tons. Over the course of the new LNG powered truck program, it is estimated the trucks will save a total of approximately 70 tons of emissions.



"San Francisco is recognized as a leader in the development and deployment of alternative fuel vehicles both within our own city fleet and among private fleets like Norcal," said Jared Blumenfeld, the City's Director, Department of the Environment. "The advancement of natural gas technologies such as Westport's HPDI among heavy-duty trucks is good for local air quality, reduces greenhouse gases, and lessens our dependence on imported oil. The city is proud to be a part of an initiative that impacts all three of these critical local, national, and global objectives."



Bennie Anselmo, Norcal's Fleet Manager, said he is happy with the operation of the Westport natural gas trucks to date and looking forward to having even cleaner, better performing trucks on the road by the end of the year.



"Our drivers appreciate the clean-burning characteristics, the quiet ride, and, above all, the performance that these trucks have been able to show under extremely demanding operating conditions," said Anselmo.


The truck upgrades will feature new 400-horsepower Cummins ISX engines equipped with Exhaust Gas Recirculation (EGR) and Westport's second-generation HPDI fuel system fuelled by LNG. The three trucks will be certified at the California Air Resources Board 2007 emissions levels for NOx and PM, and are supported by a previously announced award from the US Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL).



"These heavy-duty trucks are the first Westport second-generation trucks to be adopted in the US, and will be among the cleanest ever deployed in North America. We are delighted to have both the City's and Norcal's confidence and support, as well as that of the Bay Area Air Quality Management District, for our technology development program," said Westport President Michael Gallagher. "Their ongoing leadership is showing the way for other jurisdictions to find natural gas-based solutions for the nation's energy and environmental security challenges."



The Westport-equipped transfer trucks operating at Norcal make up to six 120-mile round trips per day from the company's transfer station on the outskirts of San Francisco to the Altamont landfill site. Each truck operates at a gross vehicle weight of 80,000 pounds.



Collectively, Norcal subsidiaries operate a fleet of approximately 1,100 vehicles. The companies provide solid waste management and recycling for more than 400,000 residential and 50,000 commercial customers in San Francisco and more than 50 other communities in California.



About Westport Innovations Inc. Westport Innovations Inc. is the leading developer of environmental technologies that allow engines to operate on clean-burning fuels such as natural gas, hydrogen, and hydrogen-enriched natural gas (HCNG). Westport has technology development alliances in place with Ford, MAN, BMW, and Isuzu, as well as an ownership interest in Clean Energy, the largest provider of natural gas for vehicles in North America. Cummins Westport Inc., Westport's joint venture with Cummins Inc., manufactures and sells the world's widest range of low-emissions alternative fuel engines for commercial transportation applications such as trucks and buses.



www.westport.com Note: This document contains forward-looking statements about Westport's business, operations, technology development or to the environment in which it operates, which are based on Westport's estimates, forecasts and projections. These statements are not guarantees of future performance and involve risks and uncertainties that are difficult to predict, or are beyond Westport's control. Consequently, readers should not place any undue reliance on such forward-looking statements. In addition, these forward-looking statements relate to the date on which they are made. Westport disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.



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Press Contact:

Heather Merry

Investor Relations & Communications

Westport Innovations Inc.

Phone: 604-718-2046

Email: invest@westport.com



Media Inquiries:

Alexis Zehr

Media Relations

Westport Innovations Inc.

Phone: 604-718-2045

Mobile: 604-351-6559

Email: media@westport.com


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Department of the Environment

City and County of San Francisco

11 Grove Street, San Francisco, CA 94102

Telephone: (415) 355-3700 | Fax: (415) 554-6393

Email: environment@sfgov.org | www.sfenvironment.com