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0113 322 7950

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Stakeholder Relations Team

stakeholder@northerngas.co.uk

Low Carbon Gas Preheating (LCGP) Project

To ensure the delivery of sustainable energy for current and future customers at the lowest cost our energy regulator, Ofgem, has introduced the Network Innovation Competition (NIC).

The Network Innovation Competition encourages projects which will deliver benefits to customers and the environment. Funding is available from Ofgem for the most successful initiatives.

Daily performance

Sites Carbon Emissions
(gCO2e)
QGross Qnet Efficiency Data
Gas Fired Boiler Houses Tyersal (Medium) 0 0.00 - 255% View
Scremerston (Small) 17183 0.02 - 255% View
Wetheral (Large) 8 0.00 - 255% View
Water Bath Heaters Newby (Medium) 0 0.00 - 0% View
Pannal (Large) 0 0.00 - 255% View
Tow Law (Small) 0 0.00 - 255% View
Low Pressure Steam Towton (Large) - - - - View
Low Moor (Small) 0 0.00 - 255% View
Little Burdon (Medium) 0 0.00 - 0% View
Thermo Catalytic Systems Crossgates (Small) 0 0.00 - 255% View

Hourly performance

Last updated: 20 August 2017
Start date
End date
WBH - Large
WBH - Medium
WBH - Small
BH Sites - Large
BH Sites - Medium
BH Sites - Small
LP Stream - Large
LP Stream - Medium
LP Stream - Small
Hotcat - Large
Hotcat - Medium
Hotcat - Small

Graph

Data

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Start date
Calendar
End date
Calendar
Time T Out Q Gas Q Electricity F Gas Efficiency Carbon Equiq

Pre-heating: saving energy through better design

The gas distribution industry relies on a process of pre-heating to prevent gas from freezing when it moves from the high pressure network to our lower pressure network. We recognised the need to explore more sustainable and economical sources of pre-heating – a market traditionally dominated by suppliers of boiler packages and water bath heaters.

We launched a consultation exercise to source new and innovative solutions to pre-heating from stakeholders not traditionally involved in this market – including heating equipment suppliers and professional engineering consultancies. The results have been compiled in a new report, which is now guiding our investment strategy.

Our low carbon technology

In 2013, we commissioned a study to find an alternative solution to Water Bath Heaters and Gas Fired Boiler Houses – one that could potentially benefit our business, and all other gas distribution networks.

Two alternative technologies, Low Pressure Steam and Thermo Catalytic Systems, have been identified, and over the next three years we’ll be trialling these, alongside existing technologies, across 12 of our sites. Data will be made available, in real time, to other gas distribution networks and the wider industry.

Gas Fired Boiler Houses - existing

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Inside a boiler room gas fired boilers heat fluid and pump it from the boilerhouse to heat exchangers. these heat changers then transfer the heat generated to the gas.

Since the early 1990s, when a preheating system has been replaced, BHs have been installed on sites. To date BHs have been the preferred method for preheating. Sites with BHs around 5 years old and older have floor mounted gas fired boilers. Newer installations are usually provided with more efficient multiple (modular) wall mounted condensing gas fired boilers. Each gas stream requires one Heat Exchanger (HX). Pipework from the BG can serve more than one HQ as required. The totaly energy able to be produced by the BH is sized to serve the peak demand of the gas stream with some redundancy to allow for plant failures or planned maintenance.

The system efficiency of this method of preheating should not be assessed by looking at the efficiency of the boilers in isolation. To date, no study has been published to demonstrate the system efficiency of BHs used in preheating gas. As such, losses of heat to atmosphere through pipework and HXs, and losses due to the system providing heat to the gas stream unnecessarily must be assumed. No study has been provided into the excess energy used when overheating the gas stream. Additionally, the total electrical load is not considered when calculating the boiler efficiency.

Water Bath Heaters - existing

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Gas psses through a heat exchanger which is submerged in water and contained inside an insulted shell.
The water is eventually transferred to the gas.

Tow Law: a small site
Newby: a medium-size site
Pannal: a large site

Low Pressure Steam - Proheat

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Gas fired burners turn water into steam which travels through to the gas steam pipework where it condenses. The energy generated by this process then heats the gas.

This system uses low pressure steam to heat the gas stream and can be installed as a direct replacement of an existing WBH with the added benefit that only 1 system would be required to replace 2 existing WBHs due to the modular nature of the design.

The system is based on gas burners heating a water-glycol mix until it becomes steam. By creating a vacuum containing the system fluid, the steam is created at around 42°C, this is a significantly lower temperature steam produced from water at atmospheric pressure. Once this steam condenses on the cold gas stream pipe it gives off an enormous amount of energy compared with the energy potentially given up by a liquid at the same temperature. This then allows the system to contain considerably less fluid than it would if a liquid was the heat transfer medium resulting in reduced thermal losses.
Equipment Drawing. Proheat1

Low Moor: a small site
Little Burdon: a medium-size site

Thermo Catalytic Systems - Bruest

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Gas fired radiant catalytic panels are mounted within the HotCat unit. The heat from these panels transfers to the pipework and heats the gas.

The system is based on gas fired catalytic heaters. These provide radiant heat which is collected by the gas pipeline within the unit. This system can be installed as a direct replacement of an existing WBH with the added benefit that only 1 suitably sized HotCat would be required to replace 2 existing WBHs.

HotCat’s are made up of several zones each containing 2 catalytic heaters. Each zone can be controlled independently. Bruest state in their literature that the efficiency of their system is 70%. However, this figure does not include electricity consumption. Before the gas supply is provided to each heater, the catalyst needs to be preheated to 232°C by an electrical preheating element. Once achieved, the electrical supply is disconnected and gas combusts to provide all of the required heat.

Crossgates: a small site
Knottingley: a medium-size site
Ganstead: a large site