Wednesday 26th Oct 2016 - Logistics Manager

Lloyd Fraser goes multi-modal

Lloyd Fraser is stepping up its environmental efforts with a mix of bio-fuel and rail freight trials.

The rail freight trial, conducted with train operator Roadways Container Logistics, has involved moving containers between Felixstowe and the Tamworth rail terminal.

Adrian Rea, general manager, Lloyd Fraser, says this has helped improve container collection and inbound activity at the Tamworth warehouse, and it now has the capacity to move 60 loads per week.

“An added benefit has been an improvement in driver utilisation, so we have also seen considerable savings against our road transport budget.”

It has also started bio-diesel trials, for which two trucks are being monitored on a daily basis.

“Cynics will say that this is just another claim that won’t work, but with the way engineering technology has moved over recent years it stands to reason that at some point one of these ideas will work…maybe this is the one and with a potential prize of £30,000 annually for every one per cent decrease in fuel usage it can’t be ignored,” said Rea.

As well as the bio diesel trial, a further two trucks at the Tamworth site have been fitted with hydrogen generators and are being trialled and monitored on a daily basis using on-board telemetics to provide journey details and MPG figures.

This will be compared with the previous three months’ daily running statistics. The company expects a ten per cent cost saving.

The new unit separates the hydrogen and oxygen molecules that make up water creating hydrogen and oxygen gases by electrolysis. The gases are produced under a slight pressure, which ensures a consistent flow to the engine and a hose from the unit delivers the gas to the air intake of the vehicle. The small amounts of oxygen and hydrogen in the air-fuel mix cause a chain reaction that ignites all of the primary fuel molecules simultaneously.

Because the burn is now more efficient, the cooler burn process means emissions such as nitrous oxides, hydrocarbons and carbon monoxide are reduced both over time and distance.