REL Honored as Best-In-Class at the AFS Metal Casting Congress
Best-In-Class Conformable Compressed Natural Gas Tank REL Inc., Calumet, Michigan, and Eck Industries, Manitowoc, Wisconsin Material: 7075 aluminum. Process: Low pressure casting. Weight: 71.4 lbs. Dimensions: 11.25 x 11.25 x 20.25 in. (quarter-scale model). Application: Storage of compressed natural gas on automobiles and trucks. • This conformable tank can store 20-25% more compressed natural gas than a cylinder due to better use of the allowable packaging space. • To store high pressure without a spherical or cylindrical shape, the inner structure of the vessel must carry the load, so REL designed the tank using the Schwartz P-Surface cell design. The cell walls act as struts and carry a tensile load, keeping the tank intact. • The tank operates at 3,600 psi yet must withstand a burst of pressure of 8,100 psi and tens of thousands of cyclical loads. • REL teamed with Eck Industries to cast 7075 aluminum using printed sand cores and fixed walls coated with proprietary thermal barrier technology, filled on a low pressure casting machine.