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  • History of manufactured fuel gases

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    Drawing the retorts at the Great Gas Establishment Brick Lane, from The Monthly Magazine (1821) The history of gaseous fuel, important for lighting, heating, and cooking purposes throughout most of the 19th century and the first half of the 20th century, began with the development of analytical and pneumatic chemistry in the 18th century. The manufacturing process for "synthetic fuel gases" (also known as "manufactured fuel gas", "manufactured gas" or simply "gas") typically consisted of the gasification of combustible materials, usually coal, but also wood and oil. The coal was gasified by heating the coal in enclosed ovens with an oxygen-poor atmosphere. The fuel gases generated were mixtures of many chemical substances, including hydrogen, methane, carbon monoxide and ethylene, and could be burnt for heating and lighting purposes. Coal gas, for example, also contains significant quantities of unwanted sulfur and ammonia compounds, as well as heavy hydrocarbons, and so the manufactured fuel gases needed to be purified before they could be used.

  • Alternative fuel

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    Typical Brazilian filling station with four alternative fuels for sale: biodiesel (B3), gasohol (E25), neat ethanol (E100), and compressed natural gas (CNG). Piracicaba, São Paulo, Brazil.Alternative fuels, known as non-conventional and advanced fuels, are any materials or substances that can be used as fuels, other than conventional fuels like; fossil fuels (petroleum (oil), coal, and natural gas), as well as nuclear materials such as uranium and thorium, as well as artificial radioisotope fuels that are made in nuclear reactors. Some well-known alternative fuels include biodiesel, bioalcohol (methanol, ethanol, butanol), refuse-derived fuel, chemically stored electricity (batteries and fuel cells), hydrogen, non-fossil methane, non-fossil natural gas, vegetable oil, propane and other biomass sources.

  • Gas flare

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    Flare stack at the Shell Haven refinery in England. A gas flare, alternatively known as a flare stack, is a gas combustion device used in industrial plants such as petroleum refineries, chemical plants, natural gas processing plants as well as at oil or gas production sites having oil wells, gas wells, offshore oil and gas rigs and landfills. North Dakota Flaring of Gas In industrial plants, flare stacks are primarily used for burning off flammable gas released by pressure relief valves during unplanned over-pressuring of plant equipment. During plant or partial plant startups and shutdowns, flare stacks are also often used for the planned combustion of gases over relatively short periods. Gas flaring at many oil and gas production sites protects against the dangers of over-pressuring industrial plant equipment. When petroleum crude oil is extracted and produced from onshore or offshore oil wells, raw natural gas associated with the oil is brought to the surface as well. Especially in areas of the world lacking pipelines and other gas transportation infrastructure, vast amounts of such associated gas are commonly flared as waste or unusable gas.

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