New Generators Take the Energy Industry off the Grid.
Oil production in the United States is on the rise, with 15 new drilling rigs bringing the total number to 566. Reuters reports that this is the highest number of American rigs since 2015. As the number of wells increase, so do the expenses related to extracting and separating the product, and the greatest expense is the cost of supplying power to the wellheads.
The first choice for power is usually a direct connection to an established electrical service. Areas with high electricity costs and wells in remote locations or in rapidly expanding fields often rely on diesel-powered generators, but a new technology in generator systems promises reliable power and big savings to the nation’s oil and natural gas producers.
Mesa Natural Gas Solutions, based in Casper, Wyoming, has developed a generator that produces electricity from the raw natural gas found in crude oil, natural gas and condensate wells. This gas is unrefined and contains impurities so it is often flared or burned off at well sites where it can’t be captured, producing emissions that enter the atmosphere.
Tom Poteet, long-time Oklahoma oil man and the chief technology officer for Mesa, recently told NewsOK, ”The BTU value of wellhead gas is highly variable. The secret sauce is that these engines you can get now run on BTU values from about 700 BTUs up to about 2,500 BTUs, which is the same as propane.”
Generators running on the lower quality wellhead gas require more of it, but produce the same amount of electricity as their diesel counterparts. Mesa promises a 99% reduction in emissions and millions of dollars in savings over diesel generators for oil and natural gas producers across the country.