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Opinion | May 2018

Expanding The LNG Market

<span style="font-weight: bold;">With demand for LNG predicted to continue its upward trend well into 2030, the time is right to establish well-functioning LNG supply chains in the world's fast-growing gas markets.</span><br /> <br /> In Asia, there is high unmet demand across the region for liquefied natural gas (LNG), most notably in India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and the archipelago countries in Southeast Asia. In Africa, while LNG is still in its infancy, projects are expected to come online in Kenya, Mauritius, South Africa and Mozambique, as the governments of these countries seek to secure stable, clean and reliable power systems to underpin their economic growth. South America has also emerged as one of the most dynamic regions for natural gas and LNG. Brazil and Chile are the high-growth energy markets in terms of the development of regasification facilities. The challenge for LNG in South American countries is to ensure sufficient capacity and investment to establish a viable and sustainable supply chain that can deliver competitively-priced LNG directly to the end-user.<br /> <br /> <span style="font-weight: bold;">Common challenges, integrated solutions</span><br /> Many of the world's energy-hungry markets share the common problem of having stranded, remote demand centres scattered along vast coastlines that are disconnected from the gas pipeline network. In these locations, infrastructure solutions need to be configured from the customer's perspective, using a combination of onshore and offshore assets with flexibility for future expansion. <br /> The new supply chains must be nimble enough to cater to smaller, more cost-focused customers seeking flexibility in the quantity and lock-in periods for the LNG they buy, but robust enough to grow in line with the rising demand. The availability of strategically-located, appropriately-sized LNG terminals integrated with an efficient delivery network will enable both distributed power generation and a variety of industrial applications in various manufacturing and processing facilities.<br /> Atlantic Gulf &amp; Pacific Company of Manila (AG&amp;P) believes flexibility and agility are keys to creating the right-sized solutions to serve smaller, off-grid customers for whom a large, one-size-fits-all approach will not work. AG&amp;P's solutions use standardised designs, new technologies and importantly, integrate maritime and onshore LNG transport, storage, break-bulk and regasification assets, which streamline distribution logistics and dramatically reduce costs by eliminating bespoke engineering for each piece of infrastructure.<br /> <br /> <span style="font-weight: bold;">Terminal design</span><br /> AG&amp;P has developed a highly innovative, standardised 125 MMSCFD LNG import and regasification terminal, which utilises fan ambient air vaporisation or water-glycol shell and tube vaporisation technologies, enabling it to be used onshore or offshore. The foloowing summarises the features of AG&amp;P's modular LNG import terminal:<br /> <br /> Each standard 125 MMSCFD regasification module consists of:<br /> <ul> <li>vaporiser utilising indirect glycol/water or fan ambient air vaporiser, or water bath-type vaporiser.</li> <li>Seawater/glycol water plate and frame heat exchanger </li> <li>Glycol water circulation pumps and corresponding filters.</li></ul>Low pressure LNG pump module (only used if BOG recondensing is required) consists of:<br /> <ul> <li>N+1 low-pressure LNG pumps.</li> <li>Boil-off gas (BOG) recondenser (optional).</li> <li>High pressure LNG pump module consists of N+1 high pressure LNG pumps Off-module equipment consisting of:</li> <li>LNG surge drum</li> <li>LNG separator (only used if BOG recondensing is required) </li> <li>BOG compressor suction drum</li> <li>LP BOG compressor package (cryogenic)</li> <li>HP BOG compressor package (to pressurise BOG to send out delivery pressure-optional, if recondensing is not required)</li> <li>LNG unloading and transferring equipment as required (cryogenic hoses, marinearms with emergency release coupling and QC/DC retrieval, cryogenic drain drum, if required, cranes, etc.)</li> <li>Metering skid</li> <li>HIPPS and/or ESDV/F&amp;G/CAMS </li> <li>Required utilities</li> <li>Central control room (e-house)</li></ul><br /> All equipment is purchased utilising an in-house approved vendor list, which allows competitive pricing based on standard products that require no reengineering. This ensures shorter procurement time based on standardisation of equipment<br /> Typical schedule - 12 months ex-works <br /> <br /> By developing standard modules like the 125 MMSCFD regasification module, HP and LP pump modules as well as by establishing close relationships with BOG handling package vendors, AG&amp;P reduces project cost and schedule. Also, since the solution is easily scalable, it can meet the needs of a wider range of customers, from small-scale to large-scale projects.<br /> <br /> <span style="font-weight: bold;">Way forward</span><br /> The world's rapidly-growing gas economies need pragmatic energy solutions. AG&amp;P is meeting this challenge with a unique business model that brings under one platform LNG design and engineering, innovative technology, manufacturing, project management, local marketing and operations. AG&amp;P offers speed of development, access to new and diverse gas supply options, cost-efficiency, increasing price competitiveness and the flexibility to support the expansion of renewables in the power mix.<br /> <br /> <span style="font-weight: bold;">Author: <br /> Nancy Ballout, VP Process Operations, AG&amp;P Engineering, Houston, Texas</span><br />
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