Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) is natural gas that has been cooled down to extremely low temperature, about 160 degrees below zero, after removal of water and such impurities as carbon dioxide, sulfur, and mercury. By cooling down the gas into a liquid form, the volume is reduced about 600 times, so it becomes feasible to transport by ship. The cooling and liquefaction process is done in a specially built LNG plant.
LNG is largely made up of methane, while two other similarly sounding natural gas products, namely Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) and Natural Gas Liquids (NGL), are primarily made up of hydrocarbons heavier than methane.
The LNG value chain always involves many links, including gas production, processing, liquefaction, storage prior to transportation, storage at the delivery point, re-gasification and final distribution to consumers. The term “value” is used because at each stage large investments must be made in order to produce the natural gas and deliver it to markets.
An LNG liquefaction project like DSLNG should be viewed as a “project within a project”. The term “chain” is used because all the players in the entire LNG project chain rely on each other and therefore must work together to develop and coordinate a detailed project schedule to ensure sales delivery commitments are met.
- In the form of LNG, natural gas can be shipped from the parts of the world where it is abundant to where it is in demand.
- LNG is an energy source that has much lower air emissions than other fossil fuels, such as oil or coal.
- LNG is odorless, colorless, non-corrosive and non-toxic. Its weight is less than one-half that of water.
- The use of LNG is a proven, reliable and safe process, and it has been used in the United States since 1917.
- Natural gas is the world’s cleanest burning fossil fuel and it has emerged as the environmentally preferred fuel of choice.