Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Limited, SNGPL, is the largest integrated gas company in Pakistan serving more than 2.5 million consumers covering 142 main towns in North Central Pakistan. The transmission system owned and operated by the Company has an annual throughput of around 640 BSCF (18.1 bscm) comprising over 3,811 miles (6135 km) of transmission system. The company operates in a region of the nation that has a rapidly growing demand for natural gas and power generation due to significant industrial development. In view of a newly discovered gas field, cross-border import options and displacement of fuel oil in the mid country power generation, Sui Northern needed a medium to long-term infrastructure expansion planning tool to effectively cater for the projected gas demand. The company used a supplydemand model along with a pipeline hydraulic simulator to update the future development strategy. This strategic tool furnishes the information required to make critical decisions on the future strategy of infrastructure development. The main objective of the Study was to develop a Gas Development Strategy to identify medium and long-term gas infrastructure development priorities with a focus on optimizing the flow patterns from various gas fields to the demand centers utilizing the existing infrastructure, while taking into account characteristics of the gas in individual fields; optimizing incremental expansion of the existing gas transport infrastructure; exploring the potential contribution of underground storage in Northern Pakistan to meet seasonal demands, while enabling savings on transmission investments; and identifying potential stand-alone pipeline projects from large gas fields to demand centers, especially clusters of power plants. Furthermore, the study examines the minimization of compressor fuel consumption throughout the transmission network without compromising on the demand parameters of potential consumers. The paper analyses various ways in which the input data to the hydraulic simulator is utilized effectively in order to predict pipeline network expansion. Supply projections developed with the help of gas producers along with the seasonal demand model based on econometrics are the major inputs. The simulation methodology adopts a practical approach by applying enhancements to the existing infrastructure. The requirement is to deliver gas to the existing and known future demand centers within the customer constraints. The results of the hydraulic simulation are fed into the financial model in order to estimate the cost of development. The approach is described and the effects of applying each method and its subsequent results are given. It is also demonstrated how effectively the hydraulic simulation tool can predict the infrastructure expansion requirements.


The Company was incorporated as a private limited company in June 1963 and became a public limited company in January 1964. Its primary objective was the transmission of natural gas to markets located in the Punjab and North-West Frontier Province (NWFP). For this, it took charge of the Sui-Multan pipeline system (217 miles of 16-inch and 80 miles of 10-inch diameter pipelines) and the Rawalpindi-Wah system (82 miles of 6-inch diameter pipeline).

This content is only available via PDF.
You can access this article if you purchase or spend a download.