In September 2010, Orbital installed the gas monitoring and treatment plant on the UK’s very first large-scale bio-methane-to-grid production facility. This site was designed specifically to provide a renewable energy supply by generating bio-methane for injection into the existing gas network.
The facility at Didcot, Oxfordshire, generates bio-methane by the anaerobic digestion of waste from the on-site sewage plant. Since this first installation, Orbital has supplied bio-methane-to-grid systems for various producers all over the UK.
Since 2015, the bio-methane-to-grid sector has seen a significant expansion in the UK. Approximately 60-70 bio-methane projects have been completed, providing enough gas to meet the heating and cooking requirements of around 340,000 homes.
Orbital utilises the EC91 ATEX oxygen (O2) analyser from Systech Illinois to accurately monitor the O2 content in the purified bio-methane gas prior to it being injected into the national grid gas network.
The O2 analyser is ideal for use in biogas and other renewable energy sources such as syngas produced by gasification or pyrolysis processes. It is ATEX certified for installation in Zone 0, 1 and 2 hazardous areas with a robust IP65 weatherproof enclosure and stainless steel remote sensor. The instruments long-life O2 sensor is suitable for continuous use and is compatible with methane, hydrogen (H2), carbon dioxide (CO2) and mild acidic gas type samples.
Peter Read, Business Area Manager, Unconventional Gas, Orbital, commented, “Orbital has worked with Systech Instruments for many years, particularly in regard to utilising Systech’s O2 measurement instruments within Orbital’s analysis systems. The instruments have proven to be robust and accurate in service, with excellent aftersales support provided by the team at Systech.”
Read continued, “The accurate measurement of O2 is an important component when considering gas quality. With bio-methane-to-grid applications, the bio-methane gas has to comply with legislative requirements to allow entry into the gas network. In this context, the EC91 ATEX instrument allows us to integrate a cost-effective, reliable and accurate instrument for O2 measurement. We have utilised the EC91 for a number of years within the UK natural gas network prior to the emergence of the bio-methane-to-grid market. With our experience of the EC91, it was a natural fit with our bio-methane-to-grid solutions.”
“Orbital has 19 installed bio-methane-to-grid network entry units in the UK and we have a 100% record of achieving successful gas on date. This is due to the quality of our solution, our people and the products we incorporate with our systems, including the EC91 ATEX,” Read concluded.