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Oklahoma City company develops home-fueling unit for CNG vehicles

Oklahoma City-based compressor manufacturer HYPRES has developed a home-fueling unit for natural gas vehicles.
BY JAY F. MARKS Published: December 7, 2012

An Oklahoma City compressor company is making a move into the natural gas vehicle market.

HYPRES, which manufactures high-pressure breathing air compressors, has developed a home-fueling unit for vehicles that run on compressed natural gas.

HYPRES President Ron Peeler said the company's small compressor block is perfect for that application.

“There's nothing else out there,” he said.

Peeler said HYPRES's system, which is calls Smart Fill CNG, is the only American-made unit available.

“There is no competition right now,” he said. “But there will be.”

Natural gas is increasingly being embraced as a cheaper, cleaner alternative to gasoline or diesel, with booming production keeping prices low.

Chesapeake Energy Corp., a leading natural gas producer, struck a deal with General Electric earlier this year to develop and market home-fueling solutions. The companies already have produced a modular unit for use in commercial fueling stations.

Peeler said natural gas always has been a viable alternative fuel, but it was not economical in the 1990s when gasoline was cheaper. CNG is the cost-effective choice now, he said, with gasoline selling for $3 to $4 a gallon.

Peeler said a home-fueling unit for CNG can provide fuel for about $1 a gallon. The gas costs about 70 cents a gallon, while it costs another 30 cents a gallon to power the fueling unit.

He said consumers can finance a vehicle conversion and home-fueling unit for less than they will earn from fuel savings over a one- to three-year period.

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