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DNV GL: Sensors can improve price transparency in LNG bunkering

16 Mar 2018

DNV GL believes using sensors to measure LNG parameters in real-time will improve price transparency in liquefied natural gas (LNG) bunkering, which has traditionally relied on mass alone rather than mass and energy content.

The international accredited registrar and classification society made the above statement on Wednesday (14 March) when opening a liquefied natural gas (LNG) testing centre in Groningen, the Netherlands.

New sensor technology used at the centre will be able to rapidly identify the composition of LNG, says Johan Holstein, Head of gas testing and analysis at DNV GL – Oil & Gas.

“The current accredited technology, gas chromatography, can take 3-5 minutes to show the composition of LNG,” Holstein explained. “Sensors can give an answer in a second.”

The impact of changing LNG composition on engine performance can also be studied at the Groningen site.

Engine developers can optimise ignition patterns and compression ratios depending on the LNG composition, for example, and the facility will allow OEMs to perform compliance tests ranging from automotive engines of around 10hp to off-road and marine engines of around 500kW.

The facility is the first of its kind with a capacity compatible for the downstream sector. Its capacity is up to 250kg of liquefied gas and boasts a heat exchanger that allows the temperature of the LNG – and therefore its boil-off – to be precisely regulated.

“The 2017 DNV GL Energy Transition Outlook report predicts that LNG and LPG will account for 32% of total shipping energy use in terms of technology and fuel uptake, so I believe DNV GL’s continuing investment in facilities, recommended practices and online tools is timely and builds on our established expertise in downstream LNG,” says Ben Oudman, Regional Manager – Continental Europe, Eurasia, Middle East, India and Africa, DNV GL – Oil & Gas.

“Our aim is to support the industry adoption of LNG in an efficient, reliable and safe way.”

For LNG fuel quality testing, DNV GL has engaged in a strategic partnership with Veritas Petroleum Services (VPS) to further develop procedures and practices to ascertain and monitor LNG quality.

DNV GL and VPS aim to develop a set of validated tools and measurement methods to provide the LNG industry with accurate, reliable and cost-efficient tools to help break down the perceived barriers to LNG adoption.

Photo credit: DNV GL 
Published: 16 March, 2018

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