WLPGA Member Focus – Worthington Industries

Worthington Industries is well known globally for portable propane cylinders for industrial, commercial, construction and residential uses, as well as for vehicle autogas tanks.

Founded in 1955 and based in Columbus, Ohio, USA, Worthington has been a leading innovator of cost-effective, low-risk gas and liquid containment technology for more than four decades. Worthington’s propane products deliver reliable performance because its testing, development, materials and design engineering, quality and regulatory services are all in-house.

Worthington Industries is the largest propane cylinder and autogas tank manufacturer in the world, based on revenue, units produced and available product offering. It began manufacturing aluminum portable propane cylinders in 1971, and expanded in 1975 with 20-pound steel forklift cylinders. By 1989, it had added steel heating and system cylinders used for residential and commercial applications. In recent years, Worthington has expanded into the autogas vehicle market, with steel cylindrical, twin-manifold and toroidal tanks. Its propane cylinder and autogas tank products are just one portion of the 80 million product units of all types it manufactures each year, including compressed natural gas and hydrogen cylinders, torches, solder, refrigerant, industrial gases and much more.

Wide Range of Propane Cylinders

Worthington manufactures propane cylinders for virtually every application imaginable. According to Mark Komlosi, director of LPG gas products and North American sales manager, Worthington’s cylinder models range from 14-ounce models used to power hand torches, to 420-pound steel cylinders used in home heating systems. Worthington’s aluminum and steel portable propane cylinders are used for everything from home barbeque grilling to cooking fuel for commercial food trucks. Steel cylinders, with rust inhibiting powder coat paint, are available in sizes ranging from 4.25 to 100 pounds. Worthington’s steel and aluminum forklift cylinders feature a rugged, consistent design made to withstand years of rigorous use. A relatively new product area for Worthington is aluminum outdoor lawn equipment cylinders, commonly used to power lawn mowers, which are seeing growing adoption in North America. Worthington’s steel heating and system cylinders carry heat and power for commercial buildings and homes. Recreational vehicles (RVs) are popular for vacation travel, and cooking meals is an easy matter with Worthington’s motor fuel cylinders. The company also manufactures lightweight, all-steel Bernzomatic™ and Coleman® camping fuel cylinders for cooking, grilling or heating, along with 14.1-ounce hand torch cylinders used for soldering, thawing frozen locks and softening paint.

Mastering the Autogas Market

Worthington entered the autogas marketplace in 2010, when it partnered with U.S.-based alternative fuel system designer ROUSH CleanTech to develop a vehicle tank. Worthington added toroidal tank capabilities with the 2011 acquisition of its Poland operation, based in Slupsk. According to Radisa Nunic, commercial director for alternative fuels for Europe, Worthington’s Poland operation has manufactured toroidal autogas tanks since 1990, and today is a Tier 1 supplier to many well-known automotive manufacturers. Because of its long history, Worthington’s Poland operation offers more than 1,000 different toroidal autogas tank models, many of which are custom-sized to specific vehicles, along with cylindrical and twin-manifold models.

Chris Hanners, product manager for alternative fuels in North America, said Worthington’s wide range of autogas tanks provides space efficiency without sacrificing safety for vehicle OEMs and aftermarket businesses. For example, in North America, the company offers autogas tanks for applications as diverse as:

  • Light-duty trucks, with cylindrical and twin-manifold models ranging from 18 to 24 inches in diameter and up to 60 inches long.
  • Medium-duty trucks and school buses, with cylindrical and twin-manifold models ranging from 12 to 16 inches in diameter and up to 110 inches long.
  • Heavy-duty trucks, with cylindrical models that are 26 inches in diameter up to 100 inches long.
  • Passenger vehicles like taxis and police cars, with twin-manifold models up to 11 inches in diameter and 42 inches long, along with toroidal models as large as 28.4 inches in diameter and 13.8 inches in height. Thinner-gauge steel makes Worthington’s toroidal tanks up to 30 percent lighter than competitive products.

When it comes to autogas tanks, Worthington is well known for its automated manufacturing approach. This is especially crucial for vehicle OEMs , because their products are manufactured to very exact tolerances. That means the dimensions of Worthington’s autogas tanks must be just as precise. Each Worthington autogas tank utilizes technology that ensures reliable and repeatable construction to meet customer and regulatory requirements. Plus, Worthington X-rays its autogas tanks to ensure weld quality and construction integrity. Worthington’s passion for gas and liquid containment innovation has maximized the use of propane around the world as a fuel source. Its products help accomplish everything from heating homes and cooking food to transporting goods and people. Simply put, Worthington propane cylinders and autogas tanks make life more safe, productive and convenient.

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