Worldwide industrial services and products company Harsco Corporation announcedFeb. 21 that its Structural Composites Industries (SCI) unit has beenselected by Volvo to produce up to 5,000 lightweight composite fueltanks this year for Volvo S80 series natural gas vehicle (NGV)automobiles.
Announcing the contract, SCI General Manager Ron Eickelman said, "Weare honored to partner with Volvo's world-renowned commitment tovehicle safety and performance. This award underscores our ability todesign the safest, most weight-efficient fuel tank solutions availabletoday and further enhances our leadership as a major NGV tank supplierto the automobile and bus industries." Founded in 1971, SCI is a leading producer of lightweight, filament-wound compositecylinders, pressure vessels and structures for gas storage.
According to Harsco, natural gas is seen as one of the best medium-term alternatives togasoline for motor vehicles, reducing smog emissions to near zero andcarbon dioxide emissions by about 20 percent, while retainingperformance levels comparable to gasoline-fueled vehicles. WorldwideNGV users exceed one million vehicles, while US demand is alsobeginning to accelerate, with over 100,000 vehicles already on the roadand more than 1,300 natural gas refueling stations in operation,according to industry estimates. Because natural gas is stored in gas form, a larger fueltank is required to achieve practical driving range. With a conventional tank, increasing size also increases weight. According to SCI, its filament-wound carbon fiber technology keeps weight to a minimum, while offering high shock resistance and long life.
SCI is one element of Harsco's presence in theemerging alternate fuel technology market. Harsco's Taylor-Wharton unitmanufactures a complementary line of stationary and portable liquefiednatural gas (LNG) pressure vessels that are ideal for a range ofalternate fuel technology applications, while Harsco's American Welding& Tank (AWT) unit is a producer of propane tanks.
SCI, Taylor-Wharton and AWT are all part of Harsco's Gas and FluidControl Group, manufacturers of a broad range of gas and fluidcontrol equipment in the world. Harsco Corporation is a provider of industrial services andproducts, serving the worldwide infrastructure development, steel andmetals, railway transportation, and gas and energy industries. Thecompany employs nearly 20,000 people in 40 countries of operation.Additional information about Harsco, including its Gas and FluidControl Group, can be found at www.harsco.com.