The two top items driving lift truck design today are improving overall productivity and lowering operating costs, says Brett Wood, vice president of marketing, product planning and dealer development for
Toyota Material Handling U.S.A (www.toyotaforklift.com). "It's all about moving more product, getting more work done and doing it cost effectively."
While there is deserved focus on the employment of AC motors as opposed to DC, there are a number of alternative fuels still being used effectively for material handling equipment. Wood notes that Toyota offers a compressed natural gas (CNG) fuel system for a number of its forklift models.
There are significantly lower emissions from CNG than gasoline, diesel and propane. Toyota's system is UL listed and certified to meet emission level regulations mandated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the California Air Resources Board. Generally, too, CNG tends to be lower cost than the other forklift fuels.
Toyota's CNG system is designed with a closed loop fuel system that automatically adjusts and optimizes the air/fuel mixture ratio. Tailpipe emissions are minimized as the system works in conjunction with a three-way catalytic converter.
A Toyota CNG forklift.