David Gardner’s “No Choice Revolution” Natural Gas Stock

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Well, the copywriters over the Motley Fool seem to have been working overtime to churn out ads for the Motley Fool Stock Advisor … so I guess the lights will stay on late into the night at Gumshoe HQ, too. What is it they’re pitching now, and why does it have so many of my readers revved up?

Here’s the part that catches your attention:

“The simple fuel injector (pictured below) could power the “No Choice” revolution…

“And the ONE SMALL, PUBLICLY TRADED COMPANY that makes it has a patent portfolio that dwarfs those of Siemens, Toyota, Ford, and CAT — all now clamoring to get a piece of the action…

“On March 30th at Georgetown University, President Obama publicly backed this small company’s mission — and sent its shares soaring…

“Here’s the important part in all this for you: this stock is still poised like a spring, waiting on a congressional announcement that could come as early as TOMORROW…”

TOMORROW?!?! OH NO OH NO WHERE’S MY WALLET? MUST SUBSCRIBE NOW!

>ahem<

Sorry about that, just got a little excited -- oh, and no, I didn't copy over the diagram of a fuel injector that the Foolies included, sorry. Try to imagine it, if you will.

So what is this stock? First a bit more teasing ... we're told that this is another of David Gardner's "top dog" and "first mover" companies in a space where there is a huge unmet need (might it also be a "Spiffy Pop?” Hope springs eternal) …

“David instead invests like a venture capitalist — focusing on ‘first movers’ and “top dogs” capable of breathtaking innovation… often delivering lower consumer prices and improving the lives of millions and millions of people in the process.

“But let’s back up a second. Here’s what I mean by a ‘first mover’: A company with a product or service so revolutionary it disrupts an existing industry or creates an entirely new one. And a “top dog” is a company that dominates its industry and basically has no peer.

“On the rare occasion you find a company that is both a top dog and a first mover — the chances are pretty good you’ve found your next big winner. And that’s exactly what David projects for the small ‘no choice’ fuel company I’ve been telling you about…

“Keep in mind, though, the time needs to be right if rare, possibly life-changing profits are your goal… there needs to be a historic need for a solution. And a particular company uniquely positioned to deliver it. ”

And then, in teasing us with a few more details about the specific company Gardner is pitching, we also learn where the “no choice” bit came from:

“This little company, David Gardner’s top pick for new money now, is the technology leader in the conversion of diesel-fueled engines to natural gas.

“Its proprietary technology centers around the fuel injection system, it has all the patents sewn up, and the lion’s share of the natural gas engine market already locked down!

“The New York Times writes, ‘this isn’t pie-in-the-sky technology: there are already 12 million vehicles around the world that use either liquefied or compressed natural gas, though only 140,000 in the U.S.’

“Meaning, we’re in the very early stages here in the U.S. of a landmark shift to what one analyst at bank Societe Generale calls the fuel of ‘no choice’…

“That’s because it’s really our only viable course. Take a look: there is enough known natural gas in North America to last centuries… and it won’t involve a future of transferring huge amounts of wealth to Middle East sheikdoms while competing with the Chinese for imported oil.”

And the urgency?

“But a quick word of warning: Wall Street is beginning to catch on. In March, Morgan Stanley issued its first report on this little company…

“JP Morgan began covering this stock in April with a 42-page ‘initiation report.’ And other firms are following suit as we speak.

“Now I have to ask you… what would make the biggest financial firms in the world take notice of a small-cap company like this? I’d say it could only be one thing: they project an epic move.”

So what is, in their words, “David Gardner’s #1 Stock for the Coming ‘No Choice’ Fuel Revolution?”

Toss all that into the Thinkolator, and we find the answer right quick: This is our old favorite Westport Innovations (WPRT)

I’ve owned Westport in the past and I profiled it for the Irregulars a few years ago when it was still trading primarily in Canada — they are indeed the leader in heavy natural gas engines, they have a great and lucrative joint venture with Cummins to build midsize natural gas engines for fleets (garbage trucks, UPS trucks, city buses, etc.), which is really where the core of the natural gas conversion has taken place (fleets are the “low hanging fruit,” in large part because their vehicles generally stay in a small geographic area and are easy to refuel without needing a big fueling station network). And they’re counting on heavy trucks to supply their next phase of growth and help them become profitable — which means they depend a lot on the political landscape …

… which is probably why this Motley Fool ad is running right now. There was a good article in the Wall Street Journal today that summed up the basic state of natural gas for heavy truck engines, and the short summary is “depends on big government subidies.” These engines cost far more than competing engines, especially in the heavy truck business where Westport doesn’t have quite as much economy of scale as they do in their Cummins joint venture, and the stock has waxed and waned based largely on changing subsidies and on sentiment about future subsidies. The base argument for natural gas engines is strongly in an uptrend right now, not just because of energy security but because the engines can operate at a lower cost than diesel engines because of the last few years’ disconnect between natural gas and oil prices (which itself is thanks to shale gas, for the most part), but I don’t know how to handicap the future for natural gas engine subsidies in a world of competing priorities and budget pressures.

The urgency of the email builds around the potential for natural gas legislation being passed, as you might expect, but there is often news from Westport — unfortunately for them, the non-political news seems to have limited ability to move the stock since the non-political news doesn’t yet create earnings (they’ve not had a profitable year, so announcing that Caterpillar is “evaluating” their technology for their high-horsepower fleet, like they did yesterday, doesn’t really count as enticing news yet)

I do like Westport and the technology, and I have suggested the shares to the Irregulars in the past (though that was several years ago, and I would have been scared out of the stock during California’s fiscal crisis — their original goal to become profitable in 2009 depended on rapid adoption of natural gas drayage trucks at the California ports, and I was worried about CA’s commitment during their budget crisis), and if you think natural gas infrastructure buildout will happen on the highways, and, more importantly, if you believe that we’re on the dawn of a long-term system of stable and predictable government support for “no choice” natural gas as a transportation fuel, including, probably most importantly, very good subsidies for natural gas trucks, then I bet Westport will do really, really well. If subsidies are cut or don’t get written into law at the level that fleet owners need to be motivated toward conversion, then WPRT’s stock could certainly suffer — the natural transition to natural gas as a transport fuel, without aggressive subsidies and infrastructure support from the government, could easily not happen, or could happen far more slowly than a company like WPRT needs to generate profits. There was also, coincidentally, a free article from a different author over at the Fool this week that mentions WPRT as well as Clean Energy Fuels (CLNE, the company most levered to building out natural gas fueling stations), you can see that here if you like.

I’ve said before that if I could buy Cummins Westport, their JV with Cummins, I’d do that in a second because having every city bus and garbage truck on natural gas is the easiest transition, and the one that needs the least US government subsidizing … but we can’t do that, and I haven’t been confident enough in Westport’s heavy truck business to buy back into the shares in recent years. Their share of Cummins Westport makes up the vast majority of both revenue and earnings for Westport, but it’s the heavy investment in building up their partnerships with other groups, particularly their heavy duty truck business, that drags on the revenue and prohibits that Cummins Westport profit from hitting the bottom line (it’s also, on the flip side, the investment that could potentially turn them into a far larger company). Is this another case like Netflix, where I’m being a fuddy duddy about a Stock Advisor pick that someday goes ballistic as a half-dozen or so of his ideas have in past years? Or is this another one of those “forgotten” picks that aren’t going to be mentioned in future teasers as 500% gainers?

Westport, absent profit or dramatic revenue bumps, moves a lot on sentiment for natural gas vehicles, and on investors sniffing the air in the corridors of Congress — seems like the political side is actually moving in their favor now, though the stock is down a bit from it’s highs, but I’ve thought that before and been wrong. This is a billion dollar company that, despite a multitude of partnerships with heavy truck, engine, and equipment companies, really needs a bit of a jump start to get to profitability, and the US government is the most likely source of that spark. That’s just my opinion, of course — your mileage may differ. Let us know with a comment below if you see that jump start coming soon from Capitol Hill, or if you think the technology leadership will evaporate or political follow-through will be lacking.


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87 Responses to David Gardner’s “No Choice Revolution” Natural Gas Stock


  1. I'm a bit puzzled by the implication that some unique new technology is needed to convert to natural gas for vehicles, trucks, etc. There have been nat gas powered fleets for years in some places, everything from taxis to utility company fleets to city buses. These were relatively simple conversions to gas engines, I think. So perhaps to convert diesel engines requires some relatively unique technology…but although I believe that nat gas is the likely fuel of the future I'm not totally convinced of some parts of the story here.

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    • There are some major maintenance issues associated with Natural Gas driven vehicles. Perhaps as companies look at this they are seeing that the numbers in terms of $ saved not as encouraging. This is a clean fuels move more than anything unless. Based on supply and environment this move is still good all around.

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    • I’ve read almost all the comments but nothing I could find as why LP isn’t used in this country extensively. WELL, several months ago I DID research on Natural Gas powered engines. Guess what? My research(I hope someone will verify), discovered that Natural Gas CANNOT today be used with Fuel injected engines. So unless someother means is found to replace the carburator on engines(besides fuel injection),,,, its a dead horse. That today is the chief drawback

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          • My telecommunication company used Propane converted engines in the early ’80′s. The conversion was very cheap and easy. However, later when fuel injected systems appeared most of the converted vans were eliminated because of cost. Same goes for pleasure vehicles. Fuel injection made conversions very expensive. My research found Natural gas engines from OEM would add another $13000.-$15,000. cost to a new car. Probable the main reason no full conversion(w/o battery’s) passenger is available today. Large companies with large fleets have no problem with cost spread over years and miles.

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      • Natural gas, whether in a liquid or gasious state is and will be the fuel of choice on our highways as soon as the infa structure inproves and Detroit starts production. The major cost in cng conversion in motor vehicles is the cost of the storage tank, not the engine modifications. 3M and Cheasepeake have entered into a JV to innovate and improve the manufacture of these tanks to improve efficiency and cost. The current cost comparison to gasoline is almost less than half on a national avg. and as far as its wear and tear of the vehicle, burning cng is better for the engine and requires less maintenance, not sure about the LNG but I’d find it hard to believe LNG would harm a motor and its components more than diesel fuel.

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        • Major cost in cng is carburetation. Storage tanks are minor because of present construction of tanks. Running line from deck(trunk) to engine is only issue and minor. With modern engines w/o carburetor and with computer programming that’s a real issue. And, yes, LNG is cleaner with less carbon and fewer byproducts therefore less maintence. Having driven the early Propane vans I can say there is practically no difference in power, pickup or speed.

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      • I used to live in Cqli ( I have now nested in WA) and several of my friends there had their
        pickups with a switch to lp gas, with the gasoline engine working just fine together.

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      • That is incorrect. It’s quite easy actually to convert a vehicle that is gasoline powered and fuel injected to run CNG, and it does not have to be dedicated, i.e. one can switch between gasoline and CNG. You can do a little research on this on YouTube, quite a few end-users are converting their cars and trucks in this manner.

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      • Crazy talk. CNG vehicles are mass produced as duel fuel vehicles with two tanks. Conversion kits are available for many production cars today and it takes the better part of 1 day, some computer mods, some fuel injection mods and a certified cng tank .

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    • I don’t get it.
      I spent about 40 years in the fork lift truck business.
      During that tome it was common prsctice to convert the gas engines to LPG.
      There are several manufacyurers with conversion kits… and they are very
      inexpensive… Gas is the same tank that u buy for the barbecue.. and refilling
      stations are all over NOW.

      Next the big difference between the commercial gas and diesel engine is the wet sleeve
      that forms a sleeve inside the cylinder. This was done to protect the engine block
      so that if damage occurred the sleeve can be replaced not the entire engine. I don’t
      remember converting diesels to LPG… seems like a waste… maybe the diesel fuel
      handles the high compression better.. I’m not sure.

      ALSO.
      The fork lifts have been running on electric battery power forever. They use to use magnetic controllers but years ago converted to the solid state controllers… these
      are also available as retrofits… They use mostly solid tires (very hard) to conserve fuel

      It kind of irks me that today’s geniuses never refer back to the history of a NEW invention
      so as to mislead investors and confuse the public.

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    • I do think there is a bright future for CNG and LNG as alternative fuels in the US, but there is one huge obstacle: the EPA. I think bi-fuel conversions of both diesel and gas engines is the way to go, but EPA certification rules (and CARB rules in California) are ridiculous in that conversions for each vehicle make, model, year and engine have to be certified at a cost of up to $250,000 each. That cost has to be passed to consumers and businesses in the form of higher prices. An EPA certified conversion for a passenger vehicle or light truck can cost $10,000+ including labor but an uncertified installation could cost as little as $3500. At that price government incentives are not needed. Bi-fuel conversions allow the engine to operate on the original fuel if CNG is not available. This makes the lack of fueling infrastructure less problematic. Some types of conversions have the engine operate on gasoline under 1000 RPM and switch to CNG over 1000 rpm if it is available. The conversions have much lower operating costs and emissions than then original engines. CNG is 93 octane so performance is good. Yes, you can buy bi-fuel conversion kits for fuel injected engines. Bi-fuel conversions have a better ROI than electric hybrid vehicles (including plug-ins) with equivalent reductions of carbon dioxide and other emissions. The EPA recently “simplified” certification rules but they are still terribly misguided. Instead the should look to Europe for some guidance. Certifying by engine and vehicle type would provide adequate protections and reduced costs. Today’s rules must have been influenced by big oil lobbiests as far as I can tell. Though most large oil companies are involved in some aspect of the natural gas business, I suspect they will stay out of the CNG and LNG alternate fuels business on any scale until competitors force them to do so. They want to milk their legacy fuel businesses as long as possible.

      As far as WPRT, they are in a good business with a great market potential but I suspect the lack of profitability is due to the approach they have taken to the issue: manufacturing CNG/LNG only engines rather than focusing on bi-fuel conversions of original engines. This is certainly more difficult with heavy truck engines but still possible and practical if it is done when the engine is new or nearly new. Again EPA compliance is enormously expensive under current rules. If the EPA would get out of the way, I suspect their profits would increase and you would see a huge wave of conversions right down to mid-size passenger vehicles. I am not sure there is a good way to play this though. Some of the best conversion kits (today uncertified by the EPA) is imported from companies in Argentina, Denmark and other countries diffiicult or risky to invest in. Over time I suspect that will change.

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      • The EPA has changed some of the requirements. You can purchase top quality EPA compliant systems for less than $1200 and still apply for state incentives.

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  2. my friends in Italy all converted their gas driven cars to run on natural gas (refueling at night at home!) why these converter kits are not taking hold in the US

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    • Converting a carburated engine in this country is less then $100.00, but if you will notice most if not all engines today are fuel injected.

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  3. i HAVE BEEN TOLD THAT THE USE OF NATURAL GAS AS A FUEL FOR HEAVY "OVER THE ROAD" TRUCKS IS IMPRACTICAL BECAUSE THE ENERGY IN NATURAL GAS IS LOWER THAN THE ENERGY IN DIESEL FUEL. THIS MAKES IT DANGEROUS FOR SUCH VEHICLES TO USE NATURAL GAS IN HILLY OR MOUNTANIOUS TERRAIN. aNY BASIS??

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    • Anyone remember the old Army day where anything could be burnt in a diesel engine. Main reason why most Army vehicles had diesel engines. Today regulations(?) prevent cheap fuel, like after shave lotion, or cooking oil from being used, I guess,,,,,,,,,,,

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    • I can tell you that there is a company out there that is selling complete kits to convert diesel engines to Natural Gas. They sell the complete kit. They claim that payback is in the 1 year timeframe. They indicate that there are 8MM diesel engines in the US that could be converted to Nat gas. They actually hold a patent on this technology. The company is Omnitek Engineering (OMTK).

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      • Westport carries a scary valuation at almost 10X sales, OMTK trades over the counter and is currently going for 40X sales with revenue growing pretty tepidly in recent quarters. They might do fine, I don’t know anything about them other than that their business is selling kits to convert diesel engines to nat gas, but that’s very pricey.

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  4. I recently secured a natural gas engine catalogue with the intent of performing retrofit engine replacements in cars, vans and light trucks. .While the average vehicle owner might not be interested in the retrofit, a company with a small fleet could be a prime target for this replacement. There isn't a great deal of work involved, the motors have plenty of power , and it just becomes a matter of standardization for the most common vehicles Westport has a wide variety of packages to choose from, but they are not cheap, but they are doable

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  5. EnI f natural gas vehicles were to become a new trend,the refueling part could be accomplished from the infrastructure that exists in just about every town and cityter text right here!

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  6. Costs on diesel fleets up front are what large scale trucking companies look at. So they will not buy NG or LNG untill costs come down.. a lot. 4 wheeled vehicles will be the first and some 6 wheel(postal ect) fleets will be the first mass acceptance.
    NG has half the energy of diesal so regular trucks(Semis) would nedd 400 gal. tanks versus present stndard 200 gal deisel tanks.. @ 7 pds per gal(deisel) the NG (liquid) would add apprx. 1000 pds.. Balancing the position of tanks for weight limits on front tires and the assortied filling connections and different fuel tanks contruction all have to be taken into account. Costs soar.. they won't be bought till last minute.. even by the big boys that order 1000 tractors ata time.

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  7. Why no mention of Greenman Technologies (GMTI)? They can convert an already-existing diesel engine with almost no-retrofitting involved. Their technology is more in the software-driven "black box" that they add to an engine. And this stock is under $1 per share.

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    • I agree with T Boone. He has been in the gas business since it was first invented(pre Moses era , I believe) Seriously he is referring to the KISS principal(Keep It Simple S_____)

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  8. I've read quite a few different websites speculating that Motley Fool is talking about Westport in their newsletter. Their newsletter teaser said that President Obama made mention of this (unnamed) company in his speech at Georgetown University. I've read the transcript of that speech, and the only mention Obama makes of any specific person or company is T. Boone Pickens. Of course Pickens owns a significant portion of Clean Energy Fuels Corp. Westport owns about 175 LNG patents compared to Clean Energy Fuels 100 patents. I've read the Georgetown transcripts several times and I still can't find any reference to any specific company other than Pickens name.

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  9. I drove a 626 Mazda in the Netherlands in the early 1980's. I had a natural compressed gas tank installed in the rear trunk for a couple of hundred dollars. My mileage per gallon was slightly less than it was on regular gas put I could switch over from natural gas to gasoline while I was driving and have about a 600 mile range. natural gas was about 21 dutch guilder cents per gallon versus 1.20/1.30 for a gallon of regular gas at the time. Every fifth gas station or so provided natural gas by putting up an external tank which could be done in a very short time. Support by the U.S government for natural gas as an alternate major fuel source for vehicles will come sooner or later. With the recent developments in U.S natural gas supplies it will be a great dependable alternative to (foreign) oil. With ever increasing fluctuating oil prices, instability in countries that supply us with oil, projected surge in demand in the future and taking into account the need for a clean burning readily available alternative, then the Motley fools pick of Westport Innovations is in my opinion a very viable one……

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  10. I don't understand whats the big deal here? I have seen Buses, Three Wheelers and Four Wheelers in India running on CNG. Any one in India can convert the Gas Car to CNG thru a small kit. Is Westport doing something different like converting water to fuel???? Many a times people have complained about certain drawback like (a) The vehicle on fire in case the system leaks which is rear (b) Increased maintenance of engine since CNG is dry (c) Low power…..But it is cheap INR 36/Kg compared to Gas for INR 80/L..

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  11. The big deal here is that in many countries a motor vehicle must pass emission tests! Meanwhile, Gumshoe,,,,,,if you like the combo Cummins/WPRT investment, why not simply buy CMI?

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  12. Let’s see. Yesterday (6-24-2011) Westport closed at $21.49 a share. Westport also has 45,452,000 shares outstanding. So, how many shares can most of us cheapskates on the free site afford to buy? You’re right. Not very many. Consider this option instead. Hydrogen Engine Center, Inc. (HYEG) closed yesterday at $.29 per share. HYEG has approximately 31,000,000 shares outstanding, and a private energy firm recently purchased 51% of those shares from the founder. HYEG makes engines that run on hydrogen, and the hydrogen is made by passing windmill-generated electricity through water. This is the ultimate green energy company, and the shares (which were over $20 each many years ago) have risen this year from $.06 to a high of $.40. I have slowly been accumulating shares in HYEG as I believe that the private energy company that recently purchased a controlling interest in HYEG will not stop until they buy out the entire company.

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    • Well, 7 months after your post, HYEG is at $.15 and WPRT is at $34.23. It seems that your alternative would have lost people 50% of their little bit of money they have which WPRT would have given you over a 50% increase. Bad call.

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      • >>Well, 7 months after your post, HYEG is at $.15 and WPRT is at $34.23. It seems that your alternative would have lost people 50% of their little bit of money they have which WPRT would have given you over a 50% increase. Bad call.<<

        Yes, yes and YES! Take it from the voice of experience: penny stocks are BAD NEWS!
        Three weeks after your post, WPRT is @ 41.55–up over 30% YTD! Happily, I'm in–$20K worth–and I discovered hidden gem on my own…no credit to the MF, although they touted the right one, this time.

        Since the date of this blog (back in June?), a lot has changed in the nat gas industry. There is a recently-discovered glut of the commodity, prices are cheaper, and it looks like Congress is leaning pro-gas (not their "gas," for a change).

        Along with WPRT, I also picked up NGLS (midstream distribution) and am considering CLNE, owing to their campaign to build a nat-gas filling station highway.

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  13. I was a Fool some years back, but got bogged down in the social and political boards ("You're an idiot! ! !" "No, you are! !), so I haven't been back. Recently, I signed up again, and these ads have been coming through.

    The Fool copywriters are still in fine form. I was intrigued by this one, too, and did a little searching. Got here before the trail ran out.

    WPRT's chart shows a big run-up in April (when was it that Obama talked about it?),

    You may have seen the Fool's earlier (July 18) take on it and 9 others:
    http://www.fool.com/investing/high-growth/2011/07

    "Though not profitable yet, Westport Innovations offers an enticing opportunity to invest in a company that could represent the wave of the future." That last is a link to an article that says

    "The company has yet to turn a profit. "

    Might b worth Watching, though

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  14. We ran our light trucks and cotton pickers on propane for many years with a simple conversion kit. This was back in the 60's and 70's until the cost of propane exceeded gasoline. The same kits are available for natural gas.

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  15. The US imports a lot of it's oil but has plenty of natural gas. So it seems likely that at some point natural gas will be commonly used in vehicles. The question is when and who is going to profit from it. At what price will it be economical to convert to natural gas from the present fuels? There is a lot of speculation involved since nobody can be sure. Most likely it depends on how fast and far the price of oil goes up.

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  16. Hey man, I listened to the whole thing and feel more stupid for every second of it. Natural gas is a good fuel for stationary engines, where you can connect them to the existing STATIC (not moving) supply of natural gas (such as the meter that may be outside your home). As noted above, the energy content of the gas is lower, and it is necessary to compress the gas to very high pressures in a steel gas cylinder (like an oxygen tank) to carry enough around to make it a realistic source for automobiles. The carburetor required for NG is simple, in practice not much more complex than a bunsen burner, and has already been in use for decades. I see the present limitations to using NG as a motor fuel to be daunting, but not insurmountable. The real need is a way to store it in quantities that don’t require a visit to a fueling station once or twice a day.
    Seems like they got in, are trying to create a buzz for a sucker rush to push up the price, dump it, then short it…..just sayin, not hatin…..go Seahawks!! John

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  17. It seems like we’re comparing apples to oranges. WPRT is selling a conversion from diesel to CNG for large vehicles that use a lot of fuel. It would appear that will only take off with government subsidies because of the huge expense. And it sounds like WPRT needs a new management team or an audit. The cheap $500 retrofit that has been mentioned several times is for the average consumer vehicle. So how come there is no big pitch and push for the consumer retrofit. I would think that would be just as profitable and may gain traction faster if refueling was available.

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  18. Anyone care to update their opinions on WPRT since its been almost a year since the writing of this article. I recently came across this thread after receiving a fool pitch email that struck me as familiar. I was right, its a new video promoting their paid service and hinting toward WPRT.

    I have seen WPRT travel from 21-30 a share this past year providing a nice chunk of earnings for my small investment. They are still not in profit, but I am looking for anyone’s updated opinion on the stock since the Fool is still pitching it. Part of me wants to grab my earnings and run and the other part wants to stay invested until this stock pops.

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    • I saw the pitch(video) and was think while watching it might be a good investment because “small company and cheap”. However, after the viewing and getting a quote on the stock it was my impression the stock, I felt, at 43.+ was much too high for the result. Sounds like to me the company needs funds for R & D and IF it is ready to market the system,,,,,,,,what will be the cost. Keep in mind ,,,,,,,cars are powered much differently then large trucks and large companies are more apt to invest in the product.

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  19. What ever happened to that gentleman that invented the engine that could get 100 miles to a tank full of water where the hydrogen and oxygen produced by hydrolysis was in large quantities? Did someone actually poison him?

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    • EVERYONE has an acquaintance who has a friend who has a cousin who has a neighbor who is the guy that invented the engine that goes 100 miles per gallon of water. NO ONE has ever actually met the inventor, or seen the engine …………

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      • Wemco94@ I’ve met one guy that invented a water engine back in Spain, he had a backer and WAS afraid for his life. He seemed genuine, but I never did see the engine:-)

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  20. I seen in thailand, alot of taxis and trucks have converted to natural gas, due to government subsidy program, but, it does not mean that this particular stock will benefit. I imagine people like shell oil, also sell gas. So, no real change..
    And apparently to convert costs arround 2000 dollars, so, i cannot see where the big bucks are to be made.

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  21. I found the article very interesting indeed. But the comments from everyone is what makes this research experience so enjoyable. The information gleamed from the 37 responses are so valuable in making a decision on buying stock for a compressed gas convertor kit. The different variables that would have an effect on the stock such as safety etc.
    I am from a small town in Colorado, we had a family that used propane for fueling their cars and this happened in the middle 60s’. Thank God their family car was not involved in a car accident.

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  22. Buy the stock or not, but please leave the science to people who can spell, and know what they’re talking about. Natural Gas and Propane both have 6% lower power potential than gasoline, true. However, by increasing the compression in the engine, you gain that power back. You can accomplish this quite easily in a diesel engine by increasing the turbocharger’s output. Also, you DO NOT use 6x the fuel, nor have to carry 1000 lbs of fuel. I currently own and operate a propane powered Jeep which I converted myself for $300. It is a simple process to convert and fill. I get the same range from the same amount of propane as gasoline and is smog-free. Also, the tank is 1/4″ thick steel cylinder – please read a physics book and figure out how hard it would be to puncture a cylinder that’s pressurized at 350psi. Short answer: a lot harder than your car’s plastic gas tank, so who’s driving the bomb …
    Back to the social and economic aspects of this: most states have laws prohibiting conversion to alternative fuels, propane and natural gas, without CARB numbered kits, etc. That can be overcome … but the real problem is where do you get your fuel? A trucker or a soccer mom, either one, doesn’t want to have to travel out of their way to get fuel. Until you see LNG filling stations on I-80, this sector isn’t going anywhere. Buy the stock, sit on it for 10 years and hope the Fool is right, but if you don’t understand the technology behind Liquid Natural Gas or Liquid Propane fueled vehicles, follow the rest of the sheep.

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  23. Currently trading at 10 times book value near it’s 5 yr. high with losses projected to continue….I wish I would have jumped on this before The Fool stared pitching it but I think I’ll go to Vegas before investing in WPRT

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  24. One of the hurdles being forgotten in all of this is the current state of the NG pipeline infrastructure today throughout the lower 50 states. A rather substantial upgrade will need to happen to major supply lines , This is one of the detractors forgotten about when pushing for natural gas conversions the major players hate to pump money into these lines when they are current cash cows paid for years ago.

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  25. The misinformation in this thread is shocking.
    1) Liquid Natural Gas is not a “gel”, it is a clear liquid that flows freely. And it is not 6 to 1 or 6 % of any petroleum fuel. On a volumetric basis it holds slightly more than half the energy than the same unit of diesel. 1.7 to 1 . . . Look it up.
    2) WPRT is not the only player doing diesel engines, just the highest cost. The lion’s share of their revenue does not come from their IP.
    3) Natural gas vehicles are safer than gasoline by a lot, and also safer than diesel. They are not explosive although high pressure with CNG is a concern. Actually stored as high as 250 Bar (3600 psi). LNG is max pressure of 15 Bar (230 psi). The low temperature of LNG at -260 F is the other safety concern.
    4) The economic savings for vehicle operating costs is real. Waiting for tax credits is bad. There are other technologies that can be paid back without subsidies.

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    • Not real sure about Fools theory’s. In the video it pointed out how much stock they recommended have gained. However, I just happen to own one of them, MRVL purchased in 2/18/10 at $18.02. Video said Disney purchased MRVL and stock soared. I just unloaded my MRVL at $15.03 after holding it almost 2 years. I don’t know when Disney bought MRVL but it wasn’t while I owned it.

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      • Must be a typo somewhere in their ad if they’re using MRVL — the stock they recommended (extremely successfully in this case, at least) was Marvel, the comic book company (formerly MVL), not Marvell the chipmaker (MRVL). MVL was acquired by Disney in the $50 neighborhood somewhere, if memory serves, I think Gardner recommended it when they were near death at $6 and continued re-recommending it for a few years on the way back up on the strength of the Spiderman and Iron Man movies.

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      • You bought the wrong stock! Marvel is the comic book company turned movie production empire. I think u bought the hard drive/chip maker.

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  26. Im Short @ 44.75. If they “PUMP” (pun intended) This dream to $55 I`ll at least double my Short Position! It`s a bloated piece of garbage!

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  27. Beyond all the science and all the anecdotal evidence, and despite the competing points of view on this thread, there is one critical piece of undisputed evidence for everybody to consider here. The article above was written in May 2011. In that article, it quotes the Fool as saying the stock was about to jump “pending Congressional action as early as TOMORROW.” (That would be around the May 12-15 2011 time frame). I just received an almost EXACTLY SIMILAR email from the Fool today, March 13, 2012! Well, that is amazing. So, grab your wallets and buy some stock!! Because on May 12, 2011, or on March 14, 2012, the stock is about to TAKE OFF!! I’m sure on April 15, 2013 it will also be “about to take off!” and on November 1, 2014, it will likewise be “pending IMPORTANT CONGRESSIONAL ACTION!” ACT NOW! Sale is almost over!!! BLOWOUT SALE! LIMITED TIME OFFER!! LAST CHANCE!! DON’T MISS THIS DEAL!!! Etc. Of course, if all the sheeple stampede to buy this stock, it WILL look like the price went up. Just in time for everybody to get fleeced. And then, you may even notice some insiders selling their stock in the next month or so. While its high. They do that, you know, to pay for their kids’ tuition or to buy a new vacation home. They unload some stock, right after some big Press Release and Analyst push. Then, when it plummets, they buy it back up. If you want to finance WPRT’s executives’ vacation homes, then go ahead and take the FOOL at its word. Science and Anecdotes are nice. But don’t ever buy something that the Fool tells you to buy. By the time you are reading it, the Fool has already picked up the insiders’ game plan and is helping push something for their benefit. I have no faith in the objectivity or benevolence of the Fool.

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    • I agree with you 100% on the Fool. Frankly, I wish the Fool had never adopted WPRT into its circle of “insider” stocks to hype (for money, of course).

      But this is not about what the Fool either hypes or trashes. It’s all about Westport Innovations, which has raised lots of revenues over the past 2 or 3 years in order to further expand development of those heavy-duty CNG engines. If the WPRT principles enjoy their vacation homes along the way, more power to them! (They’ve earned it.)

      I own both WPRT and CLNE (future of the nat gas highway) because I believe in these stocks. I just wish the Motley Fool would go away.

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  28. I own a car wrap business and wrapped a new Honda Civic for a local gas natural gas re-seller last summer. He can use natural gas from his home natural gas system. Fill up kit costs about $3000-4000 to install. Takes overnight to “fill” the tank. Only commercial “quick fill” station in town is city owned fill station for their vehicles. The natural gas tank takes up about 1/2 the trunk in the Honda version that I saw. Max range for the vehicle is about 250 or so miles. Natural gas equivalent price vs. gasoline was about (and I mean about) $1.65/gallon. With tax credits etc bottom line was the car was about $3000-4000 more than a similar gasoline powered Civic. Predicted the engine would last much longer because it burns clean so clean. Oil virtually never gets dirty. Only change it because it breaks down due to hear in use.

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  29. David Gardner isn’t talking about WPRT. He says, the Company “is the technology leader in the conversion of diesel-fueled engines to natural gas.” Westport doesn’t do that. I think it’s OMTK.

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  30. Once again,,,,,, Westport has/is as I understand it developing fuel injectors for engines. Seems to me if you look at the current engines which are mostly fuel injected and became almost the sole source of power for cars and trucks in the late 1990′s. WPRT still doesnt have an natural gas engine developed or anything? Need to hire new R & D engineers. New cell phones have been developed from scratch, been to moon and back several times,,,,,,too me doesn’t seem like a good investment.

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    • For CNG injection you need a completely different fuel injector – one which can sit sealed while under pressure even when the engine is idle, which can meter a gas accurately – a much different proposition from a liquid and which will do that without degrading under in-cylinder conditions of temperature and pressure; I believe most modern big diesels are direct-injected. It also has to do the above reliably enough to pass emissions on VOs, i.e. minor leakage as well as normal exhaust emissions. Of course any ECU programming would have to be re-calibrated too. As for the engine itself, I don’t see why any changes would be necessary, though optimal operation might require a different compression ratio from diesel fuel operation. The injector might have to have an integrated form of spark plug, since CNG will not auto-ignite at diesel auto-ignition pressures.

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  31. there would not be a need for as many fueling stations for cng if it were possible to use Lng, how does one keep Lng at or below -161 deg F. when traveling along interstate 40 in the desert? The floor of my truck gets hot enough where you cannot stand on it barefooted when traveling past joplin missouri in the summer months. Cng’s bigest problem is capacity, This is why its used only in regional or local areas, A team truck (2 drivers) can travel over 1400 miles per day, How many miles would a class 8 truck travel on cng befor needing refueling? Considering the current DOT hours of service rules, I need to travel 550 to 600 miles per day without refueling. if needing to refule more than every other day Cng would not help me at all.

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  32. George, as soon as bullets become a major traffic hazard, we’ll probably have other things to worry about besides the ng tank. But until then, you’re fixated on the wrong thing. During an accident the worry is that the tank or a gas line becomes compromised and leaks natural gas into the air. Eventually the natural gas will become diluted enough, and a spark from an outside source (perhaps some dimwit standing too close to the accident dialing 911 on a cellphone) will cause the air/fuel mixture to ignite or explode, not the tank itself. Of course, once the tank itself has become enveloped in flame and starts to warm up, then you’ll need to worry about another scenario, a so-called BLEVE (Boiling Liquid Expanding Vapor Explosion).

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  33. The premise is true and the technology has been in place for years but without serious governmental infrastructure support there is no way this could come into reality. It really doesn’t matter if we have an “endless supply” of natural gas, if it will run your car or not, (and it can, that is a fact, it will) but can you pull over and fill up your gas tank at the next gas station? Right now the answer is no. I think this stock will be interesting to watch but a buy would be difficult until after the next election……To many oil company lobbyist donate big bucks to Congress. I liken it to the “War on Drugs” – Oil employs way to many people for government to ever do away or compete with it.

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  34. My sister works in Washington D.C. as an OPEC advisor to the current administration and she has mentioned several times that the topic of NG is a highly contested debate within all circles of government (as we all know) . However, she mentioned something EXTREMELY interesting yesterday. Although I would think she wasn’t at all at liberty to extend such information to a family member, a few US Senators and policy makers are now most certainly going to use this issue to tip the balance towards re-election. More specifically, the go ahead approval of the Keystone XL Pipeline construction on hold in Congress. Trans-Canada has been pushing for this for a few years now and although Obama had postponed the decision to 2013, and to the STRONG opposition of OPEC executives and advisors such as herself, the current turmoil in global markets has pushed the current administration to begin implementing radical changes to the proposed plans to the NG infrastructure in the US. A major component of this, is what has prevented the overall acceptance of NG as a primary form of energy consumption in the US…US subsidies for companies to promote/create the much needed infrastructure to support NG in the US. Folks I am telling you right now, start looking to take positions in the many companies that are about to benefit from NG (and not renewable resources as the current administration had premised their campaign on 4 years ago) being the new platform of energy independence in the United States.

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  35. Gerry is correct. Real Estate for the tanks is the issue. I have been around this technology for a long time and aside from the industry needing more infrastructure, CnG is not harmful to an engine, but to go as far as gasoline or diesel, you need a much bigger tank. Dedicated fuel systems don’t have the infrastructure to support them so dual fuel systems are necessary. This adds to the cost.

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  36. This is a long reply so I’ll summarize it here and if you would like to know the reasoning behind my opinions you can read the rest.

    If the question at hand is whether it is reasonable to invest in the LNG fuel market, e.g: does it have a growth future and can one be confident of a reasonable return on investment. I think the answer is yes.

    If the question you ask is whether you can get a 10 fold increase in your investment in no time at all, as some suggest, I say that’s a fools question and you will soon be parted from your money. Being seduced by promises of incredible returns is the surest way to contribute to someone else’s market success.

    Compared to gasoline and diesel LNG has much to recommend it. First it is a domestic fuel so we don’t put our security at risk depending on it. It is adaptable to most current vehicles at the manufacturer level with well understood technology. It would not require as large a change in currently used technology as any other proposed solutions. It does not use food for fuel which adds a cost to bio solutions that is often not considered. It is clean. LNG is one of the lowest carbon emitters of all fossil fuels. We’ve got lots of it.

    There seems to be some confusion between natural gas (LNG) and propane (LPG). LPG comes out of the ground as one of the components of crude oil. It is separated out at the refinery. In years past it was burnt off as a waste product but no more. When it was waste it was really cheap. Today it is about equal to gasoline and diesel on an energy cost basis. LNG does not mix well with crude oil and comes out of the ground separate. It needs little or no processing. It has no odor so somewhere along the way they make it stink so you know if it’s leaking. It may have some sulfur in it which is undesirable so it may need to be processed to remove the sulfur. Otherwise what comes out of the ground is what you use at home and could use in your motor vehicle.

    I’ve been considering alternative fuels since I was 15 y.o. working at a gas station that sold propane for 40% of the price of gasoline. My boss converted his truck because his cost was half what he was selling it for. At today’s prices LPG doesn’t make much sense. If I could use LNG though it might be different because it is a lot cheaper. As a motor fuel LPG and LNG are a lot alike.

    I am a master mechanic. I have worked on all of the variants talked about here. Here are some of the things I’ve learned over the years:

    Gasoline is not any specific thing. Any blend of liquids that gives the desired properties can be sold as gasoline. One of the most redeeming virtues of gasoline is it’s narrow combustibility range. If the mixture is just a little too rich or too lean it won’t burn. As a liquid it is 100% nonflammable. Only when it mixes with the right amount of air is there any danger. That means gasoline spills are much less dangerous than some other fuels.

    Propane, or LPG, is a single chemical or can be mixed with a few other chemicals with very similar properties. As a direct replacement for gasoline LPG has many pluses and a few minuses. I have worked on engines that have run exclusively on propane. The oil never gets dirty. What you drain out after 10K miles looks just like what you put back in. The exhaust system is clean as a whistle. Combustion chambers stay clean, Spark plugs never foul. Propane has an octane rating of about 106. If gasoline use is eliminated the compression can be increased significantly yielding improved efficiency, meaning more power and mpg. It burns very clean, producing little pollution. On the down side propane has about 90% of the energy that gasoline has. As a consequence if the engine remains the same as a gasoline engine power and economy suffer about a 10% drop. Propane has nothing to lubricate valve seats. Older engines needed to have a fuel that left a coating on the valves to keep them from wearing out too fast. Modern engines solve the problem with better valve materials so the issue has largely gone away but LPG engines still need a valve job sooner than gasoline engines. Since the engine stays so clean inside many other parts last longer with LPG. I’d call it a draw. All gaseous fuels need a pressure tank to hold the fuel. That means it has to have a shape that can take the pressure. LPG pressure is in the neighborhood of 100 psi so it’s not too bad but still the tank has to be a cylinder or something similar. The required shape limits the location and size of the tank. A gasoline or bio fuel tank that simply holds a liquid can be formed to fill any available space so more fuel can be carried. On the safety front any gaseous fuel that is spilled will immediately mix with the air and become combustible. LPG also has a slightly wider range of combustibility than gasoline so it is more dangerous.

    I have seen the Mythbusters tests of LPG tank safety. There have been two of them. They don’t apply to motor fuel situations. As it is, the NHTSA says that fewer than 1/2 of 1% of all accidents involve fire or water. Good for gasoline, bad for Hollywood, hard for anything else to match.

    Natural gas, or CNG, is almost identical to LPG as a motor fuel in most respects. It is primarily a single chemical (methane). It has even a higher octane rating so a purpose built engine can have efficiency advantages. There are strategies to use it as a replacement for either gasoline or diesel. If you have gas heat in your home it is entirely possible to have a small compressor in your garage that would take what comes to your house in the gas pipe and liquefy it making it unnecessary to find and patronize a fuel station. I’m not certain the price saving would justify the compressor cost for an individual but at least it’s an option. For a fleet, I think it is the only way to go. The big negative for CNG is pressure. It either has to be very cold or under a lot of pressure to liquify. That means expensive tanks but they are available. I think the proven tech and economics make CNG a sure bet for the future but not the only choice as some suggest. With it’s higher pressures CNG has to be viewed as less safe than LPG .

    Bio fuels like ethanol are currently made from food. It seems a poor trade off to turn food into fuel. More over there can be less energy in the bio fuel than went into it’s production. All of this could change soon when cellulosic ethanol becomes viable but for now it’s just politics. Methanol isn’t made from food but it has less energy per gallon than ethanol. Because alcohol is electrically conductive and gasoline is not there can be corrosion and electrical problems. The issue needs to be handled at the design stage and has been for those vehicles marketed as gasohol friendly. Alcohols contain less energy per gallon than gasoline so mpg is inherently lower. Alcohols contain some oxygen which they release when they burn. This makes it possible to use more alcohol and get more power from the same engine. Alcohols burn very clean like LNG and CNG. Liquid, bio fuels are less hazardous than gaseous fuels. Alcohols have a special safety problem though. They burn with a clear flame and no smoke. It is quite possible to have a big alcohol fire and not know it. Additives can fix this. Bio fuel has significant issues but they are well understood. The solutions are in place. It is the political clout behind bio fuel that makes its future a certainty though.

    Hydrogen is often touted as the fuel of the future. I think not. Hydrogen is a very tough gas to contain. It takes thousands of psi, powerful adsorbents or extreme cold to store any worthwhile amount. While it’s true that hydrogen is the most abundant substance in the cosmos, it’s not here on earth. In our environment the main source of hydrogen is water. There are two ways to get hydrogen out of water. One is to heat the water REALLY hot which results in a mixture of hydrogen and oxygen gasses instead of water. Before the gasses cool they have to be separated or they will just recombine back into water. Almost nobody does this. The other way is to run a current through the water. Hydrogen will collect at one electrode and oxygen at the other. Hydrogen then is essentially an electricity storage medium like a battery. It can also be extracted from fossil fuels but again almost nobody does that. The hydrogen can be burnt in an engine, returning about 20% of the energy put in, or it can be used in a fuel cell of an electric vehicle returning about 90% of the energy. A battery can do the same thing and it can be charged from any outlet, given enough time. Hydrogen is energy dense. More energy per pound than any chemical I know of until you take into account the weight of the storage tank. Even then it beats batteries by a wide margin. For now. When the infrastructure issue is considered though I don’t believe thousands of hydrogen generating and dispensing stations will be built before better batteries make them obsolete. Hydrogen has the widest flammability range and highest pressures of all the fuels discussed here. It has to be very well protected and controlled to be safe.

    Like gasoline diesel fuel is no particular substance but rather a collection of chemicals that result in a liquid with certain properties. There are actually wells that produce crude good enough to use as diesel without refining. It aught to be cheap but for various reasons it isn’t. Diesel fuel, whether petro or bio, is almost nonflammable in most situations and is the safest fuel here after straight vegetable oil. Diesel tends to contain a lot of sulfur naturally which makes it oily. Some fuel systems depend on that oiliness for lubrication. Unfortunately the sulfur also causes sulfur dioxide emissions which contribute to air pollution. Take out the sulfur and some fuel systems will wear out very quickly from lack of lubrication. Enter bio-diesel.

    Bio-diesel is made from various plant and animal hydrocarbons that are usually oil like to begin with. That means much of it could have been food. The food can be directly burned in some engines but tends to cause serious problems for others. With some simple processing the food gets converted into a liquid that has some highly desirable fuel properties and fewer problems. It’s cetane rating is very high and diesel engines running on straight bio-diesel can be very smooth and quiet. It is very clean and tends to clean up old dirty fuel systems. It is very oily. As little as 5% mixed with petro-diesel can make up for the oiliness lost when sulfur is removed from petro-diesel. The molecules in bio-diesel attack some kinds of rubber and turn the rubber into goo. You need good fuel hoses and seals. At about 30 degrees most bio-diesel turns into bio-butter and stops flowing. These problems have known solutions but they have to be dealt with either by the manufacturer or by a mechanic in the field. By now nearly all diesel has some bio component to make up for the low sulfur content of modern fuel so one way or another the negatives have been resolved. From a safety standpoint bio-diesel is about like petro-diesel and vegetable oil is so hard to burn it is nearly inert. Bio-diesel has a certain future as a patch for low sulfur petro-diesel and as a stand alone fuel.

    I believe the real future of transportation it battery-electric vehicles. If the right batteries were available today I think there wouldn’t even be a discussion of other fuels. Advanced batteries could make unreliable renewable sources of electricity like wind and solar more viable. Compared to petroleum based fuels and the inefficient way we use them, electricity is cheap. New thorium fueled nuclear reactors that produce very little radioactive waste and actually consume existing stockpiles are under construction. Nuclear power could easily be the ultimate source for future energy to charge advanced batteries. That’s a bit down the road though so there is a window for many other alternatives. LNG has a place in that window but eventually as a carbon source it will be doomed.

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  37. I don't know if it has any basis in general terms, but it is apparently not a concern for Westport's technology — the quote from their website is: "The Westport HD system—featuring unique fuel injectors and combustion technology—allows natural gas engines to match the power, torque, and efficiency characteristics of an equivalent diesel engine."

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  38. All the buses in San Diego, CA run on natural gas. There are plenty of hills here (it's California) and the buses do just fine.

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  39. Energy equivalence ratio is 6:1 in favor of gasoline over natural gas. That means that to travel as far as a tank full of gasoline will go, you need 6 x the amount of natural gas. For local fleets, that's not a great problem since gas can be compressed. But with long haul truckers, you're need huge tanks that would add a tremendous amount of weight to cargo, seriously undermining mileage. Nat gas works well for local trucking and bus fleets. For long haulers, it seems to me impractical, government subsidies or not.

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  40. FYI The technology is a special fuel mixing injector that allows more power to be derived by mixing Nat. Gas and Diesel prior to the inlet valve. The result is lower fuel consumption and lower emissions.
    The real question is 1 Billion in revenue and they haven't earned a profit.

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  41. The Westport Heavy Engine trucks uses LNG instead of just natural gas. LNG is cooled until it forms a gel. In this gel state, it takes 1/600 of the space normally required for just natural gas. Boone Pickens has mentioned this number several times. I've seen 18 wheelers loaded to 80,000 in drag racers on UTube and the LNG truck beats the diesel, so power is not a problem. Keeping the fuel in the gel state requires very special tanks. Plus the LNG fuel does not ignite like diesel fuel due to the extreme cold. The engine injectors are two stage and a small burst of diesel is injected along with the LNG to help it ignite. Boone has said on CNBC, the current cost difference is as high as $65,000 more for LNG vs the diesel version. His theory is that mass production would bring that cost down, and with the increase use of natural gas reduce oil imports, increase local jobs, and exceed engine exhaust mandates

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  42. I think the letter said the technology was named (broadly, nat gas in heavy trucks), but only implied that the specific company was named. Hair splitting is a core competency for these copywriters. I'm certain the ad is teasing Westport, though that does not, of course, mean we can be certain that it's a great idea at this particular price.

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  43. This is the kind of BIG thinking that US needs but unfotunately does not do anymore. Boon Pickens' related plan ( not the windpower one) makes so much strategic and economic sense. The carzy part is that it is nothing new. In New Delhi, the capital of a poor India, EVERY bus and taxi ( inlcudes even the cheapest 3 wheel open sided contraptions made around 100cc scooter chasis) has been required by law to run only on CNG for the last 10 years. These private vehicles are maintained mostly by off the wall mechanic shops who will convert a gas/diesel burning old car into CNG burning car for something like $500. This conversion is surely manageable here with the talent and resources available but do we have the will!!

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  44. There are also safety concerns in transitioning a vehicle to run on NG instead of the fuel for which it was originally designed. Exploding NG vehicles are less popular among consumers :-)

    I agree 100% that the real question about this company is why it can't eke out a profit from a 1B revenue stream. FSYS is at least profitable already. What's wrong with WPRT on the business side that they haven't been able to achieve the same?

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  45. To be noted that Indian government backed NG because it is cleaner! If you have visited Delhi in the span of last 15 years, you would see a considerable improvement in quality of the air.

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  46. I can see the advantages of running on NG, but the Westport site says it is
    compressed to 185 bars in the tank. I know that an aqualung is too, but you don’t
    expect to get into a high speed (or high momentum) collision at 1MPH underwater. Carrying a cylinder at that pressure is tantamount to carrying a bomb. And how do
    they get refuelled? Putting diesel into a tank is straightforward enough – but the WPRT site talks about cryogenic tanks (what keeps them cold?). Does the filling station compress and cool it on the spot, or is it delivered to the filling station that way, and if
    so, do they have to maintain its low temperature?
    What I’m trying to ask is this – the engine is only the energy producing end of the entire system, which incorporates the storage, handling and point of sale. What about insurance of a potentially explosive container? When the big picture is examined,
    not just how the engine works, how practical is it?
    In my opinion, this is crucial to its acceptance.

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  47. From MythBusters:
    They couldn’t get a propane tank to explode even though they shot at it and pierced the tank!

    Myth statement
    A person can shoot a propane tank with a 9 mm pistol and make it explode. Based on a scene in Casino Royale.
    Status Busted
    Notes: First, the Build Team decided to test whether it was possible to breach a propane tank with Bond’s 9 mm handgun. They found that 9 mm rounds were not powerful enough to breach the tank, but shotgun shells and 7.62 NATO caliber rifle rounds were more than enough to pierce the tank. They then fired armor piercing rifle rounds at a tank filled with propane, but could not get the tank to explode. Not even tracer rounds were successful. Finally, the Build Team resorted to extreme measures in the form of high explosives and an 7.62mm Dillon Aero M134 minigun firing a mix of tracer and incendiary rounds at the same undisclosed location as “Shooting Fish in a Barrel”. Both high explosives and the M134 were able to cause the propane tank to explode. The Build Team concluded the myth was busted as small arms were unable to explode a propane tank as depicted in Casino Royale, and that Bond would not have been able to get hold of a gattling gun or incendiary rounds.

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