Oil Shale Gas Reciprocating Engine Fuel Practices

by New member Vic-Sheldon on ‎02-24-2011 06:13 AM

The growing abundance of natural gas in North America from unconventional sources is driven in part by the gas industry migrating from pure natural gas to oil and Natural Gas Liquid (NGL) development.  Oil shale oil & gas plays are being developed in North American states and provinces not necessarily familiar with gas gathering and processing. 


I’ve been asked by gas compression technical specialists to share observed practices which may result an improved success with reciprocating engine-driven compression with the oily gases which are present in the oil shales rich in NGLs.  Better practices with engine-driven gas compression installations, their start-up and commissioning and maintaining effective production may be helpful to all. 


Although the nature of a blog forum doesn’t lend itself to these many subjects all at once, we can begin with installation fuel system design, fabrication and construction. Effective fuel water separation and fuel particulate filtration is especially important in the oil shales. Although a reciprocating engine can handle large quantities of pure water when under constant load, the challenge to the engine is not the water but the gases which may be in solution in the water. Elimination of the vast majority of the water from fuel helps control the fuel quality of gases the engine receives.   


Fuel filtration down to 1 micron is important to prevent debris from pipeline construction and repair is critical to prevent damage to pressure regulators, control valves, carburetors or fuel actuators. 


Insuring hydrocarbon liquids do not enter the engine’s fuel system is an important measure which should be considered in the NGL areas. A two-prong approach can minimize condensate:  a coalescing filter with an automatic drain and collection tank; and an engine coolant fuel heater. The coalescing filter protects the engine and pays for itself in additional NGL collection for sale. Fuel heaters should be considered when the total amount of hydrocarbons C4H10 and larger are greater than 3% by volume. Heaters are available and may use the engine coolant system to heat the fuel after the coalescing filter before the particulate filter. More information on fuel filters and heaters is available in the Fuels / Fuel Systems portions of the Gas Engine Application & Installation Guides presented in the Reference Guides section under the Reference Materials Tab on the left side of the GERP home page. 


If not familiar with GERP (Gas Engine Rating Pro) please request a copy from the bottom of the following page: http://catoilandgas.cat.com/industries/gas-compression/gerp.  Its easy to find, simply seek “GERP Caterpillar” in an internet search engine and select the entry mentioning Caterpillar Oil & Gas.


What are you finding in the oil shale installations relative to fuel system designs and installations?

by Visitor mperalta
on ‎10-27-2014 11:33 AM

Dear friends. I am an Independant Advisor and I need information regarding G3412 engine life cycle cost, mainly, planned service, oil service, top, medium and bottom overhaul related to part cost and estimated labor time.

I will appreciate your comments and information.


About the Author
  • In 2005, I started my career at Caterpillar as an intern in Kiel, after that I worked as a student and then a temporary employee. I finally became a permanent employee in 2008, working at the Marine World headquarters in Hamburg. Through all these years I was supporting and leading Marketing projects from various areas, including Electronic Sales Tools, Shows, Novelties etc. By May 01, 2011 my job role changed to the current one. In this position I am leading several Electronic Marketing projects such as all Marine and Oil & Gas Social Media activities.
  • I have been in the oil and gas industry for 34 years, primarily in technical sales and support roles for natural gas compression equipment. I have been with Caterpillar for 13 years managing application and service support for Caterpillar’s gas compression product group, managing technical service support for Caterpillar engines in Oil & Gas applications and managing product definition for Caterpillar’s Petroleum marketing unit. I am currently based in the Global Petroleum headquarters in Houston, Texas and am responsible for developing a worldwide Condition Monitoring solution for Caterpillar products used in the Oil & Gas industry. Prior to working with Caterpillar, I was with Halliburton Company’s gas compression rental business unit. There I provided technical support for applications and service in a variety of roles with the last 4 years as Manager of Compression Engineering. I have a degree in Mechanical Engineering from Texas A & M University. I am currently a member of the Gas Machinery Research Council’s (GMRC) Project Supervisory Committee and active in the GMRC’s Gas Machinery Conferences.
  • I began tinkering with engines at age 9 when I built a radio controlled airplane and took the engine apart .  Then at age 12, my dad bought me my first motorcycle, a 1979 Honda XR80.  Several modified motorcycle engines and a few broken bones later my career in developing emissions complaint engines began. Now, I have over 20 years experience addressing CARB and EPA engine emissions and safety regulations in a variety of roles. From gasoline and LPG fueled  LSI engine testing, prototype development, calibration, and field testing to NRTL approvals with Underwriters Laboratory for use in hazardous locations . My career at Caterpillar as Emission Manager  began in December 2011 and I'm enjoying my transition to the industry.
  • I have been working in engineering since 1998, primarily in different aspects of engine design . I joined Caterpillar in 2005 to work on the design of internal engine components. I have been based in Houston and have worked on products specifically for the oil and gas industry since 2008.
  • I began my career at Caterpillar in 2003, developing marketing communications for many different groups including machine, product support and technician recruitment. Since 2008, I have been working as a Marketing Consultant with Global Petroleum to develop effective marketing communications materials and events.
  • As a native of Jakarta, Indonesia, I joined Caterpillar Jakarta District Office as marketing trainee in 1985. A mechanical engineer by education, I spent my early years in Machine, Product Support field assignments before joining the Engine Division as Jakarta District Sales Representative in 1990. In 1995 I relocated to Singapore as Marine Consultant, and later as Sr Sales Representative in Caterpillar Marine Power Systems Division, where I made the breakthrough sales of Cat 3600 propulsion engines to the booming AHT market in Singapore and Malaysian shipyards. In 2005 I moved to the Global Petroleum Asia Pacific as Sales & Marketing Team Leader, and promoted to Sales and Marketing Supervisor position in 2007. In GPAP, I secured several breakthroughs including the first collaborative sales (joint effort with CMPS) of 2x6M25 engines to Keppel Singmarine for Lukoil FSO (2006), and a rigset of 8 x 3616 to Jurong's first Cat-powered Semisubmersible 'West Sirius' (2007). In 2008, I led my India team in securing the largest contract with India's Oil & Natural Gas Corp (ONGC) to repower their fleet of 185 x D399 engines with 3512B ($57M), followed with ONGC Parts and Service Agreements and initiation of India Petroleum Strategy with our India dealers in 2009. In ASEAN I led the breakthrough sales of the C175-16 in the Singapore Jackup rigs market with 19 units booked in 2011 and another 41 to be shipped in 2012 and 2013. Since 2010 I have been working on nurturing Caterpillar network and partnership with other National Oil Companies in Indonesia, Malaysia, Vietnam and Myanmar. I believe that NOC will continue to provide Caterpillar and its dealers good business for prime product and support services in years to come.
  • I started with Caterpillar in 1993 at the Lafayette Large Engine Facility. Currently I am a New Product Defintion Manager for Land Drilling and Land Production Products. I am responsible for managing new product programs for diesel, gas and dual fuel products. I am experienced in Engine development and installation in Generator sets, On-Highway trucks, Motorgraders, Well Service Equipment, Oil and Gas Drilling Equipment.
  • I joined Caterpillar after 4 years in the USArmy Field Artillery. After assignments in fuel system and engine control system design, engine test and development, manufacturing, and gas engine/genset project management, I am presently responsible for large gas compression engine marketing functional requirements and launch of these new products.

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