Utilization; Products and technologies
- Natural gas is the most widely used, traditional fuel, it is basically used to produce heat energy.
- The main goal of its power plant utilization is to produce electricity.
- It is also used as a chemical raw material during the production of plastics, fertilizer, solvents, binders, and many other useful products – today it is still the most important raw material of hydrogen production.
- In households it is mostly used for heating, producing hot water, cooking, as well as a fuel for vehicles.
Liquified Natural Gas (LNG): LNG means liquid natural gas. Under atmospheric pressure – -160°C and -163°C temperature –, natural gas transforms from gas state to liquid. Energy density projected to volume unit of LNG produced this way is significantly (approx. 600 times) higher than that of gasous natural gas. Exploiting this physical characteristics, LNG transportation is possible with ocean liner cargo ships, in constantly tempered containers under atmospheric pressure between distant continents. Primarily, the global commercial potential created by this mode of transportation has opened new markets for LNG. Nowadays, the automotive industry too uses it as a fuel.
Compressed Natural Gas (CNG): In case of CNG, volume energy density is not achieved by decreasing the temperature but by increasing the pressure. CNG is the mode of application widespread in the automotive industry. CNG, as a fuel, produces significantly less air pollution than petrol or diesel.
PB – propane-butane: a gas mixture, containing propane and butane. Used in households in bottled form. These gases are heavier than natural gas, hence their combustion properties are different.
LPG – liquified petroleum gas: a mixture of gases formed during the destillation of petroleum. These are liquid under pressure, utilization also happens in this state. An energy carrier mostly used in transportation.
PtG - power-to-gas: a summarized concept, used for gases produced with the help of electricity. A technology in this category is electrolysis, when we decompose water with electricity, thus producing hydrogen and oxygen. Another typical product is synthetic methane, produced through the reaction of hydrogen and carbon dioxide produced from electricity.
CCS/CCU – carbon capture storage (CCS) & utilization (CCU): this is a concept used for the absorption and utilization of emitted carbon dioxide. CCS is a physical process where CO2 is separated from flue gases and stored in deeper layers of the ground, empty hydrocarbon storages, or in stratified water deep under teh surface. By CCU we mean the utilization of separated carbon dioxide: usually manufacturinbg some kind of product, for instance, carbonates.
Methane separated from biogas is called biomethane. Biogas is produced during the decomposition of organic materials sealed from air; it contains methane and CO2 in a variable proportion. This technology is widespread during the utilization of gases released from landfills and agricultural by-products.