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Transcript of Natural Gas
& Electra Korn What is natural gas? How does natural gas form? How do we harvest natural gas today? How is natural gas priced? Natural Gas Environmental Impact How is natural gas used? Conclusion Consists mostly of methane CH4 (g)
But also contains significant amounts of propane C3H8 (g), ethane C2H6 (g) , and butane C4H10 (g)
Called hydrocarbons: compounds that contain carbon and hydrogen
Odorless (natural gas companies add a strong smelling substance called mercaptan to natural gas so that people can detect if there is a leak)
Highly flammable, nontoxic, fossil fuel Remains of marine organisms that lived ~500 million yrs. ago
Slowly buried under layers of sand & silt
Sand & silt hardened into solid rock
Heat & pressure turned decayed organic material into either coal, petroleum oil, or natural gas
The large amounts of chemical energy stored in bonds of molecules in natural gas originally came from the sun
Through photosynthesis, plants store energy; the decay of photosynthesis products have been converted over millions of years to fossil fuels In production process of many materials & products i.e. glass, paper, steel, clothing items, paint, plastic, medicines, dyes, explosives, photographic film
Used to power some motor vehicles
We have natural gas-powered shuttles at Emory!
Often used to generate electricity
> 1/2 of U.S. homes heated mainly by natural gas
Also used in homes for stoves, water heaters, clothing dryers, & other household appliances Price is calculated from 2 main components:
Commodity cost or wellhead cost: price of the natural gas itself (in 2011: $3.95 per thousand cubic feet)
Transmission/distribution costs: price of moving gas through pipelines from site of production to localized gas companies to consumer
Average Price (per thousand cubic feet):
Residential: $11.03; Commercial $8.92; Industrial $5.11; Electric Power $4.89 In 2011:
U.S. production (dry gas production): 23,000 billion cubic ft.
U.S. consumption: 24,385 billion cubic ft.
World production: 117 trillion cubic ft.
World consumption: 119 trillion cubic ft. Natural gas is a viable alternative fuel to traditional petroleum-based fuels
Burns cleanly compared to other gases
Widely available/large distribution infrastructure
Relatively low price
Future potential as a source of energy, especially for more usage in transportation vehicles
Natural gas powers >100,00 vehicles in the U.S. & ~11.2 million vehicles around the world
Examples of recent stories:
The company Happy Cab fuels its taxi fleets with compressed natural gas
The Kansas Public School system substantially reduced its fuel costs by switching their buses to run on compressed natural gas Finding rocks likely to contain natural gas
Vibrating trucks create echoes
Captured via seismic survey
Drilling begins when possible natural gas located
Well created from the source to the surface
Gas flows up to pipes
Processing plant refines
Stored underground or distributed
"Digesters": heat & pressure, make NG
from plant & animal remains
America transportation system:
~1.5 million mi. of pipelines
~410 active underground storage caverns
Recent surge of domestic production
New techniques to extract more
horizontal drilling of shales Sources Natural Gas Advantages: Overall Relatively clean fuel
30-40% fewer greenhouse gas emissions
60-90% fewer smog-producing pollutants
NG for ~100 yrs. in US
Little overseas trading
Revive economy in places
Ease of transport
Low storm impact
Les energy loss during transport
10% vs. 70% for electricity Natural Gas Disadvantages: Overall Greenhouse effect
Energy to produce, store, and transport
Cost of creating & managing pipelines
Hard to discover leaks
Destruction of nature
Contamination of water & air
Can contain toxic hydrogen sulfide that combusts w/ oxygen Natural Gas Vehicles Advantages Cleaner burning
Cheaper per gallon than gasoline
One of the safest fuels
Strict regulation Disadvantages Cost of converting vehicle to NG
Fuel tank too small to travel far
Few fueling stations
Danger of explosions on impact What are the two forms of natural gas? Compressed Natural Gas Stored as a compressed gas
Stored between 3,000 and 3,600 psi or 204-245 atm
Transported in pipelines
Natural gas is usually used in this form Liquid Natural Gas Stored at -260 F or -162 C
Stored & transported in large insulated tanks
Transported in large ships
Some LNG evaporates during transport & is used to drive ship engines
LNG takes up 1/600 as much volume as the same amount of CNG
Stores 138% more energy per volume
Used by some heavy duty vehicles (LA garbage trucks)
Most commonly used as a way to transport natural gas to be evaporated & used as CNG Alternative Fuels Data Center. “Natural Gas Fuel Basics.” U.S. Department of Energy, Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy. Feb. 26 2012.
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