What’s In Your Pipeline?

Author: David J. FishDownload File

With the current demand for improved technologies in the area of natural gas measurement, the rush to the market place is raising as many questions as it is answering. In the last 25 years, the natural gas pipeline industry has transitioned from the supplier of clean, dry gas to the mover of billable gas energy; clean and dry or dirty and wet. Designing and creating improved products for the measurement of volume and quality has provided new challenges as the marketing and transportation of natural gas has changed. Perhaps the single major issue that has created an interest in ascertaining the total picture of the natural gas pipeline system is “wet gas.” The definition of “wet gas” as gas with more than 7 lbs. water per million cubic feet is almost history. Wet gas metering is redefining how we talk about wet gas. There is a white paper written by Dr. Parviz Mehdizadeh that describes wet gas. Wet gas in that multiphase white paper is defined as “gas, which contains some liquid. The amount of liquid can vary from a small amount of water or hydrocarbon to a substantial amount of water or hydrocarbon.” Today’s measurement issues are different from the past, but they are here to stay. We must either return to the insistence and requirement of a clean, dry gas pipeline system (separators, processing plants, dehydration systems, etc) or acknowledge the realities of the present. One of the biggest challenges is the multiphase system. Liquids cause corrosion, pulsation, freezing problems and basic maintenance issues that create concerns for a natural gas pipeline system. Their presence must be addressed