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Alpha Coal West converts entire Caterpillar fleet to LNG

World Coal,

Alpha Coal West has placed an order with GFS Corp to convert its entire fleet of Caterpillar 793s to use liquefied natural gas (LNG). The order has been placed following an 18 month pilot program operating the world’s first LNG powered mine haul trucks. The entire fleet at the company’s Eagle Butte Mine, near Gillette, Wyoming, will now be converted to the EVO-MT™ 7930 System.

In June 2012, Alpha Coal West became the first mining company to operate mining haul trucks using natural gas, having initiated a pilot program on three trucks in conjunction with GFS Corp, the maker of the EVO-MT™ conversion system. In Q4 2013, the company converted a fourth truck. Alpha Coal West has now decided to convert 12 additional trucks to use LNG as fuel at Eagle Butte. GFS Corp will convert the balance of Alpha Coal West’s, Caterpillar 793 fleet at its Eagle Butte Coal Mine to GFS's NG+D™, natural gas plus diesel conversion system.

The conversion of the 12 vehicles is expected to be complete by October 2014. Along with the truck conversions, Alpha Coal West is installing permanent, full scale LNG fuel storage and dispensing infrastructure to replace the temporary solution used during the pilot program.

World first
GFS Corp president, Jason Green, commented: "We are pleased that our pilot project with Alpha Coal West, Inc., has led to a commercial implementation our of EVO-MT™ System. Alpha is to be commended for being the first mining company in the world to use LNG in haul truck operations. There has been a lot of talk about using LNG in mining operations, but Alpha Coal West is actually doing it and we are very proud that our NG+D™ technology is enabling their transition."

GFS Corp currently offers conversion kits for the mechanical drive Caterpillar 777 and 793 as well as the electrical drive Komatsu 830 and 930. Conversions for other truck models are under development.

Adapted from press release by Katie Woodward

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