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Onboard Dynamics, Inc., is a company formed around the natural gas onboard refueling technology being developed by Dr. Chris Hagen, PE, Assistant Professor at Oregon State University. This solution is based on having the natural gas compressor functionality integrated into the vehicle engine itself and would allow vehicle owners to refuel anywhere there is a standard low pressure natural gas supply line at a cost of less than $2.00 per gallon (gasoline equivalent). This capability addresses the current lack of CNG refueling infrastructure found in the United States which underlies the fact that less than 1% of all vehicle owners drive a natural gas vehicle therefore depriving our nation of the economic and environmental benefits of this clean and abundant domestic energy resource.
In October, 2012, Dr. Hagen was awarded an ARPA-E grant in the amount of $700,000 by the Department of Energy (DOE) to develop this technology. The original award has recently been increased by an additional $300,000 by the DOE for continued development. The proof-of-concept of this technology is being built at the Oregon State University (OSU) Engineering Systems Laboratory (ESL) in Bend, Oregon.
On the business front, Onboard Dynamics, Inc. is being led by Ms. Rita Hansen and Dr. Jeff Witwer, PE. Ms. Hansen is an experienced entrepreneur with a technical background specializing in early phase clean tech and alternative energy companies. In addition to being a past adjunct professor, Dr. Witwer has significant experience as a serial entrepreneur from the high tech and energy industries. Ms. Hansen, Dr. Witwer, and Dr. Hagen make up the founders of Onboard Dynamics, Inc.