As part of our partnership with the folks at Sunoco Logistics to explore the similarities and differences between wet and dry natural gas, today we are taking a look at the use possibilities. If you missed the first infographic, be sure to check out this post which explains the difference between the two types of natural gas produced in the Marcellus.
Natural gas liquids are the building blocks of many products
When wet natural gas is produced, it must be processed to separate the different components it contains, such as water and hydrocarbons. Natural gas liquids, such as butane, ethane and propane, are other forms of hydrocarbons, which can be used for many different products. Butane is commonly known as the flammable liquid in handheld lighters, propane is often used for heating in homes or as a fuel source for grills and propane is a chemical building block found in many different kinds of plastic products we use every day.
The average American citizen will come into contact with at least one product each day which can trace its roots back to wet natural gas. Everything from phone cases to food containers to tires to gasoline to fibers inside every kind of carpet is derived in part from a natural gas liquid.
Dry natural gas powers and heats America
Dry natural gas production allows for less processing due to lower to nonexistent levels of water and no additional hydrocarbons. This means that the methane will burn at correct temperatures for use in things like our stoves, in vehicles and in manufacturing processes.
The natural gas flows into pipelines which are strategically placed across the country delivering it to homes, businesses, manufacturers, agricultural centers and power generation plants. The methane separated from the wet gas mixture also flows into these pipelines. Natural gas recently overtook coal as the largest source of electric production in the United States, which in turn has helped to decrease our country’s carbon emissions to levels not seen in decades.
Producing dry natural gas has the benefit of allowing companies to power equipment directly from the produced natural gas which replaces other fuels like gasoline and diesel.
As most people know, Pennsylvania has unique geology that has helped make it the home of some of the largest-producing shale plays in the world. Roughly 75 percent of the Commonwealth sits on top of the Marcellus and Utica shales, each with their own distinct characteristics. Even across Pennsylvania the Marcellus varies in structure, depth, thickness and even the type of gas produced.
One of the most interesting differences in the Marcellus is whether the natural gas produced is considered “wet” or “dry” when produced. That will make a difference in the end usage and products which can be created from the natural gas. Cabot’s operations are in an area of dry gas therefore to get a full perspective, we’ve partnered with the folks at Sunoco Logistics to gain a better understanding of the complexities and possibilities of the shale beneath our feet. Over the next few weeks we will be working with them to share infographics detailing the differences of wet and dry gas in the Marcellus and what it means.
For more information on the type of gas see our August 7, 2015 blog on Wet Gas vs. Dry Gas – What is the Difference?
External Affairs at Cabot Oil & Gas Corporation
Brittany was born and raised in Bethel Park, Pennsylvania which is just south of the city of Pittsburgh. She attended Pennsylvania State University where she earned a B.A. in Public Relations and a B.A. in Psychology. She is currently pursuing a Masters in Sociology at Sam Houston State University. Brittany works in External Affairs for Cabot Oil & Gas Corporation where her responsibilities include managing outreach to the community, coordinating Cabot’s social media footprint and planning community events.
Stay in touch, visit http://www.wellsaidcabot.com