Onshore LNG import and regasification terminals face potential environmental, permitting, cost and schedule issues that can be avoided by use of offshore floating LNG regasification units, FSRUs. The regas technology typically used in a FSRU depends on burning gas or utilizing open loop sea water for the source of heat of vaporization. Burning gas has an environmental impact to the air and the cost of consuming gas that could be sold. Using sea water imposes thermal and chemical impact on marine life. LNG Smart® Air Vaporization (SAV) is an alternative technology that transfers heat from ambient air to the LNG which reduces gas usage and air emissions dramatically, uses no sea water and creates no water pollution.

SAV offers the following advantages:

  • Reduced energy consumption – The proprietary air exchange process offers significant reductions in fuel gas use, from 40-100%, depending on ambient conditions, which results in less shrinkage of the LNG needed for vaporization which is potentially an enormous savings for operators.

  • Lower air emissions - With reductions in fuel gas use, SAV reduces emissions levels on the same order of magnitude as the lower fuel gas consumption.

  • Reduced OPEX - Substantial savings can be demonstrated using SAV. With an onshore Gulf of Mexico 1 bcf/day sendout rate facility, using SAV, with natural gas prices at $6 mmbtu, cost savings with a 90% fuel gas reduction is approximately $25,000,000/year over gas fired technology.

  • Easier permitting – The proven air emissions reduction facilitates permitting.

  • Standard components – While SAV and its configuration are proprietary, virtually all operating components are readily available, shortening construction schedules.

  • Industry-Proven: SAV has been installed onshore and the components have been proven offshore in similar service.

  • Applicable to floating units: SAV can be used on new build or converted reinforced membrane, SPB tanks, or Moss spherical LNG carriers. DNV has given Approval in Principle for utilization of SAV on a FSRU.

This paper explains the LNG Smart® Air Vaporization process and its advantages and gives examples of studies done to utilize SAV on various FSRU hull types.

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