NOTE: Make sure you read the first three posts (in order!) before tackling the rest, or it could be confusing: Post 1 is Designing the future, Post 2 is Setting up the problem, and Post 3 is Estimating basic requirements.

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Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Sustainable Industry in Wisconsin

The Madison Peak Oil Group has a post on one of the most promising stories I’ve heard in a while. Being in the aerospace industry, there are few opportunities for me to look for sustainable solutions in my job. But this gives me hope that there are possibilities I haven’t yet considered.

      State firm's crane runs on veggie oil
      From The Capital Times on September 30, 2006:

      MILWAUKEE (AP) - A Wisconsin company is testing a
      crane that uses vegetable oil to run its hydraulic lift system.

      Most hydraulic systems use petroleum products that can
      damage the environment if spilled. Manitowoc Crane Group
      designed its truck-mounted crane to be used in or near
      wetlands, lakes and other environmentally sensitive areas.

      "It worked just like a regular boom truck. No problems," said
      Jeff Johnson, chief operating officer of Scott Powerline and
      Utility Equipment, a Louisiana company testing the crane.

      Manitowoc Crane Group had been worried that the vegetable
      oil would degrade or become rancid with heavy use, said
      John Lukow, vice president of sales and marketing.

      But so far, the test has gone well. Scott Powerline has put
      more than 1,000 hours on its crane as it installs power line
      polls near Dallas.

      Manitowoc now plans to offer its eco-friendly crane to
      others. In addition to using vegetable oil in the hydraulic
      system, the crane runs on a soy-based biodiesel fuel.

      The company doesn't expect the veggie crane to be a big
      seller, but a spokesman said it gives construction companies
      another option.

      "You never know where they're going to end up, and where there
      are going to be environmental options," spokesman Tom Cioni
      said.

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