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Osaka Gas believes that technologies serve as the foundation of corporate competitiveness, and considers R&D to be one of the most important elements in the strategy to make a difference.
For this reason, Osaka Gas works actively on R&D and commercialization of new technologies, as presented below.
Coal mine methane (CMM) gas with 30% or less methane concentration (low-concentration CMM) has been usually flared or vented to the atmosphere after extraction from coal seams to ensure safety of workers mining coal, serving as a contributing cause of global warming. Osaka Gas has been working on developing a low-concentration CMM concentration technology to utilize otherwise unused low-concentration CMM as fuel for gas engines, gas boilers, etc. and to promote energy-saving and environmental protection efforts.
In fiscal years 2007 and 2008, Osaka Gas formed a joint research consortium (comprising five companies including Chinese enterprises) to undertake a joint research project for "Development of Methane Concentration Technology Aimed at Effective Use of Low-concentration CMM (Coal Methane Gas)," under the auspices of the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO). A demonstration plant to concentrate CMM (CMM flow rate: 1,000 Nm3/h) was built at the Fuxin Coal Mine in Liaoning Province, China, and low-concentration CMM extracted from the coal mine was successfully concentrated through the demonstration.
Currently, Osaka Gas has licensed this technology to a Japanese engineering company. The company is promoting commercialization of this technology in China.
|Process capacity||2000 Nm3/h|
|Concentration performance||25% or more|
|Methane recovery rate||90% or more|
|Operation||Automatic operation at the touch of a button|
|Energy savings||Approx. 3,000 kL/year|
|Greenhouse gas emissions reduction||Approx. 40,000 t-CO2/year|
* Concentration performance (%) = Methane concentration of product gas − Methane concentration of feed gas
* Methane recovery rate (%) = (Methane concentration of product gas × Integrated volume of product gas) ÷ (Methane concentration of feed gas × Integrated volume of feed gas)