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Chart awarded patent for liquefaction technology

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Hydrocarbon Engineering,

Chart Energy & Chemicals, Inc., a Chart Industries Company, has announced that the US Patent and Trademark Office has awarded the company a patent for its IPSMR® cryogenic liquefaction process technology, developed by an in-house engineering team comprising Douglas Ducote, Vice President, Process Plant Technology, Timothy Gushanas, Process Consultant, and James Podolski, Process Engineer.

IPSMR technology, initially intended for use in the making of liquefied natural gas (LNG), uses a mixture of light hydrocarbons and nitrogen to provide refrigeration. Process optimisation is achieved through an improved refrigeration cycle using Chart’s proprietary brazed aluminum heat exchangers (BAHX). The IPSMR process allows clients to achieve maximum operating efficiency, economy and performance by 6 - 10% over other industry recognised single mixed refrigerant processes.

Global demand for natural gas continues to increase and liquefaction is vital for its transportation because LNG occupies 1/600th volume compared to its gaseous form. In recognising the development team’s accomplishment, Andrew Moriarty, President of Chart Energy & Chemicals, also highlighted the practical role and importance of the company’s continuous research and development programme, “The IPSMR process technology and our modular plant solutions, are at the centre of many of the proposed investments, at various stages of regulatory approval, that will enable the export of North American shale gas through liquefaction,” he said.

Chart is also actively developing IPSMR to improve the efficiency of other liquefaction processes, such as ethane, ethylene and energy storage projects.

In addition to the US, IPSMR process technology has been patented in other major countries, including China and Japan, and it is patent pending in many others.

Adapted from press release by Francesca Brindle

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