September 9, 2010
Non Members: $300.00
||The science behind getting hydrogen and oxygen from water, through electrolysis, has been around since the 1800s. However, it's no small feat to develop a system that generates a hydrogen fuel mix from a tank of water aboard a running vehicle.
Dan Lutz, who manages Beloit, Wisconsin's municipal vehicle fleet, some 300 cars and trucks from police squad cars to garbage haulers, has some insight on hydrogen boosters. For the last couple years, Dan has been experimenting with on-vehicle hydrogen generators: the good ones and the bad; and he will provide some interesting insights on what he's learned.
A year ago, Dan was involved in a pilot program with a University of Wisconsin professor, Marc Anderson and his freshman engineering students. The goals of the program were aimed at resolving issues that the City of Beloit was having with their current “Hydrogen on Demand” systems. The students were charged with testing a system that utilizes voltage from a vehicle's battery and it’s alternator to split water into hydrogen and oxygen. Those molecules are then burned as supplemental fuel thereby reducing the amount of gasoline needed and resulting in a cleaner-running engine.
For testing purposes a Hydrogen Fuel Cell (an electrolyzer) was designed and built at half scale at the University of Wisconsin and installed on a Vespa motor scooter. The system has provided promising results on the Vespa. The electrolyzer uses distilled water and sodium hydroxide as a catalyst. Similar but larger “Hydrogen on Demand” systems have also been used to reduce gasoline consumption in a few of the City of Beloit’s fleet. The advancements in this technology thanks to the involvement of the University of Wisconsin will now be incorporated in City of Beloit’s test vehicles.
Come see what they’ve learned, how the experiments are panning out and if this technology is something that your agency should investigate.
After viewing this program, participants will be better able to:
1. Explain what a hydrogen booster does
2. Determine if this technology is something their agency should pursue
3. Recognize the advantages and challenges of implementing new technology
A VIDEO CLIP OF THIS PROJECT CAN BE VIEW AT: Click on the "Driving Technology" UW-Madison video
City of Beloit Department of Public Works
Over the past sixteen year career with the City of Beloit Dan has served in many capacities starting with his boots on the ground as a Mechanic with the Transit division. He was promoted to the supervisory level at Transit and for the last ten years Dan has been the Fleet Manager for the City of Beloit.
In Dan’s current capacity he is responsible for all of Fleet and Stores Operations.
Dan’s careers with the City of Beloit has always involved the managing and care for the Cities vehicles but in the last several years the buzzwords have been “Sustainability” and “Greener technology” which created a paradigm shift.
Through strategic planning and goals set by the City of Beloit this has allowed for Dan to use his creative talents with respect to advanced Fuel Cell Technology.
In early 2008 Dan started researching Hydrogen Fuel Technology as an alterative fuel source. In November 2008 Dan became a Certified Technician in the field of this Hybrid and Hydrogen Fuel Technology. In December of 2008 the City of Beloit was installing Hydrogen Fuel Cell on a few of their vehicles for testing purposes.
In the spring of 2009 Dan met Professor Marc Anderson from the University of Wisconsin – Madison. Dan and Professor Anderson developed a Pilot Program with the University of Wisconsin to address the issues that the City of Beloit was experiencing with respect to the Hydrogen Fuel Cells that the City of Beloit was using in their fleet. For the Pilot Program Dan was requested to design and build a Fuel Cell that the University could apply one of their proprietary nano-particle thin films coating too.
The Fuel Cell design and coating process produced a world class Fuel Cell that will more than likely resolve many of the issues that this technology has been plagued with for several years.
Dan and the City of Beloit are always willing to share our technology with others. Dan as an innovative thinking manager for an innovative thinking Community has worked very diligently with leaders in the Fuel Cell technology industry to further this technology.
What started out as an initiative to make the City of Beloit’s Fleet of vehicles a bit more “Greener” using a 100% renewable resource (Water) is turning out to be advancements in Hydrogen Fuel Cell technology that will have global effects.
Public Works Supervisor
City of Beloit, Wisconsin
As a Public Works Supervisor for the City of Beloit, WI, Brett Hebert has had the opportunity to work with all facets of public works. Brett has been with the City since 2004, where he got his start as an arborist. Brett earned a BA in Public Administration in 2006 and has a certificate in supervision from CVMIC. Brett was hired as a supervisor for the City of Beloit in 2007. In 2009, Brett was selected to participate in the Emerging Leaders Academy through APWA. Brett was one of thirteen young leaders from North America to be selected into this unique management program. Brett is also a certified water operator for the state of Wisconsin as well as being certified in wastewater management.
As a Public Works Supervisor, Brett has worked on numerous special projects and initiatives with the water and wastewater utility, operations, transit authority, and fleet departments throughout his tenure. He has also earned multiple certificates in disaster management from FEMA. Through this training, Brett has been able to be an active member of the City’s disaster management team serving as safety officer during emergency declarations. Brett was also the co-author for the City of Beloit Disaster Management Flood Annex.
Brett has been working with the City of Beloit Fleet department investigate the use of alternative fuels for City vehicles. The use of hydrogen as a supplement to diesel and unleaded fuel has been at the forefront of his research. The City currently has five city vehicles equipped with hydrogen, and getting mixed results. Currently, Hebert is working with the University of Wisconsin to aid in the research and development of hydrogen technology. Testing should continue through the fall of 2010.
Professor and Chair of Environmental Chemistry and Technology
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
University of Wisconsin - Madison
A pioneer in nanoscience, Civil and Environmental Engineering Professor Marc Anderson is renowned for his creativity and groundbreaking research in controlled colloid synthesis.
Currently, he is pursuing interests in anit-fog and self cleaning windows, electronic water softening, microbiological fuel cells, and a new generation of solar cells.
He has published over 150 publications since 1974 on topics that include catalysis, membrane technology, environmental engineering and photochemistry . He has seven publications with over 100 citations and twenty-three publications with over 50 citations.
One never ceases to stand in awe of where his ideas show up next. He is one of the department’s most creative thinkers. Marc represents a new generation of Renaissance men that can generate conversations and ideas between people across many different disciplines and departments.
||Moderator: Howard Mann
City of Leawood, Kansas
Howard Mann has more than 30 years of vehicle and equipment maintenance experience. He has managed the City of Leawood's Fleet Operations for the past 20 including planning and budgeting. He is the current chair for the Fleet Services Committee for the Kansas Metro Chapter.
He was a responsible for developing the Mechanic's competition event at the local chapter rodeo over 10 years ago, one of the only events of its kind. He has numerous ASE certifications including dual master certification in Automotive and Medium/Heavy Duty Truck repair and Truck Equipment Installation and Repair. He also has obtained the CEM designation from AEMP and APWA Certified Public Fleet Professional designation.
Howard was awarded the 2004 Public Works Professional Manager of the Year from the Kansas City Metro Chapter of APWA.