Operations are just getting under way for the new CNG-fueled milk hauling fleet at Fair Oaks Farms in Fair Oaks IN. With 42 Kenworth T440 tractors operated by Ruan Transportation Management Systems and leased from Paclease, it is being called the largest renewable CNG project in the United States. The operation also includes 80 milk tank trailers.
Standing with the first CNG-fueled tractor delivered to Fair Oaks Farms were [from left] Tony Morrow, a Ruan driver; Wayne Ashley, Ruan vice-president and region manager, New Mexico and Indiana Dairy and Bulk Food Transport Division; and Mark Stoermann, Fair Oaks Farms project manager.
Pictured are three of the first four CNG-fueled tractors that were delivered to Fair Oaks IN-based Fair Oaks Farms. The tractors are on a full-service lease from PacLease.
Fair Oaks Farms personnel preload Ruan milk tankers at some of the Fair Oaks dairy farms, but Ruan drivers handle loading at other locations.
A Fair Oaks Farms digester similar to the one housed by the building in this photo is used to produce methane to fuel the 42 tractors in the fleet. Methane is released during the anaerobic treatment of cow manure, collected, and scrubbed to remove CO2 and hydrogen sulfide. The end result is fuel-quality methane.
Launching the new CNG-fueled tractor fleet at Fair Oaks Farms also meant building the support infrastructure, including two fueling stations constructed and operated by Clean Energy Fuels Corp.
Fueling station equipment includes a compressor to compress the methane before it is pumped into the tractor fuel tanks.
Fair Oaks Farms and PacLease chose the 320-hp Cummins Westport ISL G engine for the CNG-fueled tractors.
In addition to dual saddle tanks, two CNG fuel tanks are mounted behind the cab giving the Fair Oaks Farms tractors a range of almost 600 miles.
Kenworth T440 tractors in the Fair Oaks Farms fleet were spec'd with the Allison 3000HS six-speed automatic transmission.
Weight-saving specifications include Holland's aluminum fifthwheel.
Ruan Transportation Management Systems light weight 6,400-gallon sanitary milk trailers that can handle a 53,000-lb payload. Lower trailer weight was achieved by eliminating the product pump, cabinet, and hose tubes.