January 2004

Special Report: Gas Processing Developments

Optimize air compressor performance for GTL plants

New mechanical advances enable compression solutions for evolving gas-to-liquids processes

Ramdohr, M., Siemens Power Generation Industrial Applications

Compressors can constitute major capital expenditures (CAPEX) for many hydrocarbon processing facilities. To meet growing energy demands, gas-to-liquids (GTL) technology is one possible solution. In the GTL process, syngas is produced from methane by either partial oxidation with oxygen or by autothermal reforming with air. The performance and profitability of GTL facilities is heavily influenced by the economy-of-scale of the GTL unit and associated infrastructures. To ensure profitability, large plants are planned. Consequently, higher air flows are required that exceed maximum flowrates known from other gas processing/ petrochemical/ refining applications. The same conditions a

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