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Bend startup reports receiving $3 million in investments


Onboard Dynamics, Inc., a Bend-based an innovator in compressed natural gas refueling, reported Tuesday it has received $3 million from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Advanced Research Projects Agency – Energy, Portland Seed Fund, NW Natural and other utilities, and private investors.

“This additional funding commitment puts Onboard Dynamics on track to become a financially sustainable provider of affordable CNG refueling solutions,” said Rita Hansen, CEO of Onboard Dynamics. “Over the next 18 months, we will complete development, testing and market introduction of our first products.”

Onboard Dynamics is currently pursuing two compressed natural gas refueling solutions, based on novel technology for both on and off vehicle applications:

1. A fully integrated onboard engine-compressor system

2. A standalone, mobile, self-powered compressor system

The lack of fueling stations nationally has inhibited the widespread adoption of CNG vehicles. There are only 1,600 CNG fueling stations nationwide, but 72 million customer natural gas sites.

Onboard Dynamics’ technology uses the automotive engine’s own power to compress natural gas during the refueling process, which would open up the existing natural gas distribution system to CNG vehicles.

“Portland Seed Fund was the first investor in Onboard Dynamics because we saw the transformative potential of the technology and believed this was the right team to make it a success,” said Jim Huston, managing director of Portland Seed Fund.

“Not only would their technology make natural gas more economically feasible for fleet vehicles, but it would help reduce transportation-related air pollutants and greenhouse gas emissions.”

Onboard Dynamics previously received funding support from ARPA-E, ONAMI, Oregon BEST, Oregon State University, and the Portland Seed Fund, Oregon’s most active venture capital fund, among other strategic partners and private investors.

About Onboard Dynamics, Inc.

Onboard Dynamics, Inc. seeks to lower fuel costs and carbon emissions by removing barriers to driving natural gas-powered vehicles. It integrates natural gas compression into automotive engines, enabling refueling from any low pressure natural gas supply line. Based in Bend, Oregon, the company was founded in 2013 to commercialize and further develop technology licensed from Oregon State University, and originally conceived by OSU – Cascades assistant professor, Chris Hagen.

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