Thursday 11 April 2013

Natural gas quality!

Increased confidence in natural gas quality with  hydrocarbon and water dew-point analyzer

Michell Instruments enabled a natural gas storage operator to improve the hydrocarbon and water dew point measurements at its natural gas storage site in Europe.

The storage operator had lost confidence in its current water and hydrocarbon dew point analyzers: the hydrocarbon dew point readings were erratic and the water dew point readings were unresponsive. Fast response is critically important to natural gas storage operators providing emergency gas supply to satisfy peak demand on transmission network - particularly during colder winter months.

The storage operator rented a Condumax II Hydrocarbon and Water Dew Point analyzer at short notice to give readings of the natural gas in parallel with the operator’s current analyzers. This allowed them to check the accuracy and responsiveness of their equipment against a different analyzer at minimum capital expense.

During the test period, the Condumax II provided consistent HCDP readings, and showed better levels of response at lower dew points than the previously installed analyzers. The Condumax’s water dew-point readings taken during the test period were significantly faster to changes in the process than the analyzers under review.

At the end of the test, the company was satisfied that its concerns about the reliability of the readings of the current analyzers were justified. As the engineer explained: ‘The [previous analyzer] drifts to higher HC dew point levels over time in direct comparison to the consistent and repeatable CONDUMAX II HC dew point readings over several days. This drift behaviour and direction is a problem, because it brings the reading nearer to the agreed contract value for HC dew point with Wingas Transport (Gascade) ... on [some] cases they were close to breaking the contract value.’ Because the customer needed to have complete confidence in the levels of hydrocarbon and water dew point in the process, they chose to install the Condumax II permanently in the process.

• Michell Instruments is marketed in Ireland through Instrument Technology Ltd.

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