What is Gas?
Gas has two forms, Natural Gas (NG), which is extracted from oil fields as associated gas, or from independent fields as free gas (non-associated gas). The second is Petroleum Gas (PG), and is extracted during crude oil refining operations at refineries.
The name Liquefied Gas is given to Natural Gas or Petroleum Gas that has been processed and liquefied by cooling and high pressure, with the aim of reducing volume and ease of transportation, to become Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) and Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG).
Appearance of Liquefied Gas
The idea of Liquefied Gas began in 1914 in the United States of America as a patent, and in 1917 Britain made the first commercial operation using the “Liquefaction” process.
The actual commercial use of Liquefied Gas began when Britain signed a 15-year contract with Algeria in 1961 to import close to one million tons of Liquefied Natural Gas annually.
Liquefied Gas in Kuwait
In November 1976, the late Sheikh Sabah Al-Salem Al-Sabah, the Amir of the State of Kuwait at the time, laid the corner stone of the Liquefied Gas Plant project at Mina Al-Ahmadi Refinery, which was then owned by Kuwait Oil Company.
The Plant was inaugurated in February 1979 by His Highness the late Amir Sheikh Jaber Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber AlSabah, where three Trains of Liquefied Gas were commissioned: 31, 32 and 33, in addition to the inauguration of the southern Liquefied Gas tanks at the Refinery.
Keeping Pace with Development
In 1979, which witnessed the inauguration of the Liquefied Gas Train, the Company began a trial program to use Liquefied Gas as fuel for cars, by introducing some necessary mechanical modifications to a number of cars, followed by testing them for a period of time to assess the appropriateness of using this fuel under the prevailing climate conditions in Kuwait. However, the idea was abandoned due to the high temperature in the country.
The 4th Liquified Petroleum Gas Train
In 2015, the 4th Liquified Petroleum Gas Train was commissioned with a Processing capacity of 805 MMSCFPD, in addition to 106,000 bpd of condensate, bringing the capacity of the LPG Plant to a record 2,320 mmscfpd, and 226,000 bpd of condensate.
To accommodate the additional products from LPG Trains 4 & 5, the North LPG tank project was commissioned in 2017, with 10 tanks, each holding 72,000 cubic meters.
The 5th Liquified Petroleum Gas Train
The Fifth Gas Train at Mina Al-Ahmadi Refinery is KNPC’s second largest Project in terms of significance and productivity post CFP. The Train aims to to provide additional gas processing and Condensate processing capacities for effectively utilizing the upstream gases from KOC/KGOC and produces value added products, which are a major source of clean energy on a large scale due to their limited environmental impacts.
Fuel Gas Treatment Unit
The Fifth Gas Train includes an additional sub-unit for the production of clean fuel gases to meet KEPA regulations. This unit serves the fourth and Fifth Gas Trains by treating the fuel gas to reduce H2S levels from 2,400 ppm to a maximum 50 ppm.
The project is in line with Kuwait Petroleum Corporation (KPC) strategic directions and its subsidiaries in the field of meeting the energy demand of Kuwait, which states for meeting the current and future energy demand by providing an economically and environmentally friendly mix of fuels as well as strategic backup. In addition to keeping pace of KPC strategic direction regarding the increase of the production of associated and non associated gas.
The project is in line with the company’s strategic objectives 2040 strategic plan, with regard to Enabling increased Upstream Gas Production. And to keep pace with future Upstream Gas production, an assessment study is underway for 6th Gas train requirement.