The first multi-energy station in France was inaugurated by Air Liquide, the French industrial gas giant, last week.
Based in Fléville-devant-Nancy, a town which forms part of the Greater Nancy conurbation, the station is dedicated to road haulage. This simply means that the station will supply CNG (Compressed Natural Gas), LNG (Liquefied Natural Gas) and liquid nitrogen (N2) to trucks.
If CNG and LNG are destined for use with transport in urban areas, nitrogen is used for those trucks which have a cryogenic chiller unit for the refrigerated transport of food products.
According to Air Liquide, the station, which is open to the general public, has the advantage of delivering clean, silent and economical energy, all at a lower price of diesel per kilometre. In fact, CNG and LNG can be obtained from biogas, a clean energy which is the result of anaerobic digestion of organic waste.
The sound aspect is also an interesting and persuasive argument in urban areas, as the station can have deliveries late at night or early morning without causing undue disturbance to local residents.
Although the station is open to the public, the station’s primary objective is to supply the Transalliance fleet. Transalliance is a European logistics company which distributes to Monoprix stores, particularly in urban areas. Eventually, it is expected that Air Liquide will supply the fuel needs for 80 trucks.