AIMING to expand it operations to meet international demand, Omni Tanker will now be able to draw on $4m in equity investment from the Clean Energy Finance Corporation.
With Omni Tanker’s technology, portable tank containers can transport a wide range of cargoes including corrosive liquids and high purity chemicals but with lower emissions. It does this in two ways: the combination of light weight and chemical resistance of Omni Tanker’s carbon fibre tanks means transporting them requires less energy and produces lower emissions; the tank’s thermoplastic interior means it can be two-way loaded, reducing asset down time and empty running.
Omni Tanker is commercialising its technology in the bulk liquid transport equipment market, with the Omni road tanker and the OmniTAINER, a portable tank container (ISO tank) designed for intermodal applications. The use of carbon fibre composites, with six times the strength to weight of steel, allows for tanks that are more than 35% lighter.
The ISO tank container market, which already boasts a global fleet of more than 550,000 tank containers, is growing by more than 8% a year. Most tank containers are either stainless steel or carbon steel.
“This is an exceptional Australian technology, being manufactured in Australia and exported globally. We are very excited to be working alongside Omni Tanker as it scales up to revolutionise the transportation of corrosive and hazardous goods worldwide,” Clean Energy Innovation Fund executive director Ben Gust said.
With approvals now granted for its tanks to transport dangerous goods in the USA and Europe, the OmniTAINER is being exported globally. Omni Tanker is also undertaking research and development on a variety of other tank transport applications and other industry opportunities from its platform technology.
“With this investment we will substantially expand our NSW manufacturing plant and invest in our specialist workforce, enabling a major increase in production capacity by 2020,” said Omni Tanker CEO Daniel Rodgers.
“We are also pursuing other avenues for the technology in collaboration with the University of New South Wales and other industry partners through initiatives including the UNSW centre for Automated Manufacture of Advanced Composites and the Australian Government’s Advanced Manufacturing Growth Centre.”
The Clean Energy Innovation Fund, which has now invested $64 million across 10 transactions, is the largest dedicated Australian investor of its kind drawing on $200 million in CEFC finance and operated with the assistance of ARENA.
“This investment is about supporting leading-edge innovation to tackle transport-related carbon emissions, which are a significant part of the greenhouse gas emissions challenge,” Mr Gust said.
Omni Tanker’s core business is based on a patented technology invented by the late William Rodgers. The technology is used to construct a seamless thermoplastic corrosion barrier with an extraordinary interface strength to a carbon fibre composite tank structure.