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Advanced Power Solutions Help Reduce Carbon Emissions

Sep 1, 2023 | China News | 0 comments

May 19, 2023

What do Cat customers in the construction, mining, energy and transportation industries have in common? They all want Cat products to deliver the power they need to perform at their best and get the job done right. More and more customers are setting ambitious environmental, social and corporate governance goals and beginning to evaluate equipment options to complete projects in a more sustainable manner.
Caterpillar is applying its expertise to develop a variety of advanced power technologies to help customers more flexibly choose the energy they need and be more successful in the future low-carbon world.

Advanced Technologies Include:

Hydrogen Energy

With more than 35 years of experience in high-hydrogen fuels, Caterpillar is extending its legacy of natural gas engines and Solar® gas turbines. Currently, many Caterpillar products can use hydrogen-hybrid fuel and will continue to make efforts in this area in the future. In response to customer demand for hydrogen energy, we have configured some Caterpillar natural gas generator sets to run on 100% hydrogen on a build-to-order basis. We also configure some commercial generator sets to run on natural gas mixed with up to 25% hydrogen.

Caterpillar is also exploring how to use hydrogen fuel cells to power stationary and mobile equipment. Not long ago, Caterpillar announced a three-year project with Microsoft and Ballard Power Systems to create a power system that includes large-scale hydrogen fuel cells to provide reliable, sustainable backup power for Microsoft data centers. The project was supported and partially funded by the U.S. Department of Energy’s H2@Scale program and supported by the U.S. National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). In addition, Progress Rail, a subsidiary of Caterpillar, announced the signing of a memorandum of understanding with BNSF Railway and Chevron to jointly promote the hydrogen fuel cell locomotive demonstration project.

catperpillar low carbon world
catperpillar low carbon world

Carbon Caputure

Beyond embracing lower-carbon sources of power, we are investing to make conventional energy generation methods more sustainable. Caterpillar has acquired CarbonPoint Solutions, a U.S.-based carbon capture technology company that provides technology to concentrate and capture CO2 for utilization or sequestration. The company’s patented processes can be applied to engines and turbines at oil and gas sites, distributed power and industrial plants and waste-to-energy sites. Caterpillar plans to offer these technologies for deployment on our Cat engines and Solar gas turbines.

Electric Drive Equipment

Equipment with electric and hybrid powertrains combine an electric drive transmission with power components. While Caterpillar has been incorporating electric drive technology into its construction and mining machines for many years, today’s advanced electric drive machines offer greater agility, improved cycle times, less fuel consumption and lower carbon emissions than earlier versions.

As an example, Goodfellow Bros., a U.S.-based heavy civil construction company, is using the D6 XE dozer, the world’s first high drive electric drive dozer, on a solar project in Hawaii. After 900 hours of operation, Goodfellow found that the D6 XE generated 35% lower emissions compared to the other dozers on the same job.

catperpillar low carbon world
catperpillar low carbon world

Energy Storage And Battery Power

Our customers are interested in energy storage for different reasons, which is why our approach to batteries is modular and scalable across stationary and mobile applications. The Cat Energy Storage System, or ESS, is a rapidly deployable electric power solution to help customers integrate multiple power sources on a worksite. The ESS can provide grid stabilization, transient assist, and renewable energy storage. We worked with a customer to design a hybrid e-drill system that pairs a field-gas-powered generator with energy storage and integrated controls to help reduce costs and emissions at a land drilling site. The rig charges the battery when it’s not running at full capacity. 

Our microgrid solutions and controls integrate renewable energy sources into electric power systems. These installations are particularly valuable in remote locations where electrical grids may deliver inconsistent power, but where renewable energy sources like solar, wind or hydropower are available.

Caterpillar has also developed a battery electric underground loader, the R1700 XE. Along with its mobile equipment charger, the MEC500, this solution is a game changer in deep, difficult to ventilate and high temperature underground mines. The EMD® Joule, a battery electric zero-emissions switcher locomotive, provides zero-idle and low noise within railyard applications. Leveraging our deep system integration experience and knowledge, we are developing a proprietary battery management system to monitor batteries and a fully integrated battery electric powertrain for each electrified machine.

catperpillar low carbon world

Additionally, Caterpillar announced that four battery electric machine prototypes and a battery prototype will be displayed at bauma 2022 October 24-30 in Munich, Germany. The battery electric machine prototypes include the 301.9 mini excavator, 320 medium excavator, 950 GC medium wheel loader and 906 compact wheel loader. The machines are powered by Caterpillar battery prototypes and include an onboard AC charger. We also plan to offer an offboard DC fast charging option. The Caterpillar-designed batteries in these machines will also be available to power other industrial applications. The batteries are engineered to be scalable to industry and customer performance needs and maximize sustainability throughout their lifecycle, including recycling and reuse at the end of life.

Caterpillar is committed to leading in this changing world through collaboration, investments and acquisitions that add to our capabilities and accelerate development timelines.

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