* Natural gas
* Natural gas composition
* Natural gas processing
* Natural gas importance
Natural Gas is a vital component of the world's supply of energy. It is one of the cleanest, safest,and most useful of all energy sources. Despite its importance, however, there are many misconceptions about natural gas. For instance, the word 'gas' itself has a variety of different uses, and meanings. When we fuel our car, we put 'gas' in it. However, the gasoline that goes into your vehicle, while a fossil fuel itself, is very different from natural gas. The 'gas' in the common barbecue isactually propane, which, while closely associated and commonly found in natural gas, is not really natural gas itself. While commonly grouped in with other fossil fuels and sources of energy, there are many characteristics of natural gas that make it unique. Below is a bit of background information about natural gas, what exactly it is, how it is formed, and how it is found in nature.
Natural GasNatural gas is a gas consisting primarily of methane. It is found associated with other fossil fuels, in coal beds, as methane clathrates, and is created by methanogenic organisms in marshes, bogs, and landfills. It is an important fuel source, a major feedstock for fertilizers, and a potent greenhouse gas.
Before natural gas can be used as a fuel, it must undergo extensive processing to removealmost all materials other than methane. The by-products of that processing include ethane, propane, butanes, pentanes, and higher molecular weight hydrocarbons, elemental sulfur, carbon dioxide, water vapor, and sometimes helium and nitrogen.
Natural gas is often informally referred to as simply gas, especially when compared to other energy sources such as oil or coal.
In its purest form, such as the natural gas that is delivered to your home, it is almost pure methane. Methane is a molecule made up of one carbon atom and four hydrogen atoms, and is referred to as CH4.
Ethane, propane, and the other hydrocarbons commonly associated with natural gas have slightly different chemical formula. For a closer look into the combustion of methane.
Natural gas isconsidered 'dry' when it is almost pure methane, having had most of the other commonly associated hydrocarbons removed. When other hydrocarbons are present, the natural gas is 'wet'.
Natural gas has many uses, residentially, commercially, and industrially. For more information on the multiple uses of natural gas. Found in reservoirs underneath the earth, natural gas is commonly associated with oildeposits. Production companies search for evidence of these reservoirs by using sophisticated technology that helps to find the location of the natural gas, and drill wells in the earth where it is likely to be found. To learn more about the new technologies and their environmental impact. Once brought from underground, the natural gas is refined to remove impurities like water, other gases, sand,and other compounds. Some hydrocarbons are removed and sold separately, including propane and butane. Other impurities are also removed, like hydrogen sulfide (the refining of which can produce sulfur, which is then also sold separately). After refining, the clean natural gas is transmitted through a network of pipelines, thousands of miles of which exist in the United States alone. From thesepipelines, natural gas is delivered to its point of use. For more information on how natural gas gets from underneath the ground to its final destination.
Natural gas can be measured in a number of different ways. As a gas, it can be measured by the volume it takes up at normal temperatures and pressures, commonly expressed in cubic feet. Production and distribution companies commonly measure...