Research and development has paid off. The National Energy Technology Laboratory has developed a method of freezing natural gas that could lower the cost of transportation to access vast amounts of the world’s gas resources.
Researchers created a special nozzle and process that rapidly traps natural gas in ice – like methane hydrates. It requires much less pressure and cooling than liquefied natural gas, and forms hydrates in minutes rather than the current process that can take house to days.
The new process is not as energy-dense as LNG or CNG, but could help producers access resources that have long been undeveloped in places like the Arctic permafrost and in the deep ocean because they were to expensive and unstable to recover.
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