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Патент USA US3045903

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July 24, 1962
3,045,893
F. S. YOUNG
COMPRESSOR SYSTEM
Filed March 12. 1959
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United States Patent 0 Ffice
3,045,893
Patented July 24, 1962
2
1
3,045,893
COMPRESSOR SYSTEM
Farrile S. Young, Houston, Tex., assìgnor to Gulf Inteb
state Company, Houston, Tex., a corporation of Dela
Ware
Filed Mar. 12, 1959, Ser. No. 799,0'22
13 Claims. (Cl. 230-95)
This invention relates to gas transmission lines, and
more particularly to a compressor system for `a gas trans
mission line.
The present method of boosting pressure of gaseous
fluids is by using reciprocating or centrifugal type com
pressors. These compressors are driven by electric mo
vided with automatic controls for maintaining a predeter
mined condition in the gas transmission line.
Referring to FIGURE l, a portion of a gas transmission
line is shown `at 10. The line 10 is representative of the
many lines conveying gaseous products long distances
throughout this country, such as those conveying natural
gas from the Southwest section of the country to other
sections of the country. As is well known, these lines ex
tend many hundreds of miles and it is necessary to re
10 compress the gas Iat spaced intervals to maintain the de
sired line pressure.
A gas jet compressor indicated generally at 11 is pro
vided in the pipe line and delivers gas which has been
heated and slightly compressed in accordance with this
tors, reciprocating engines, gas turbines, steam engines, 15 invention to the line 10. The gas jet compressor may
etc.
Their disadvantage is that with any large flow, a
great quantity of horsepower and expense is required.
Part of the expense is due to the necessity of handling all
of the gas through the compressor with the resulting large
pipings and valves at each compressor station.
Conventionally compressor stations are spaced approx
imately 90 miles apart. It is well known that by locat
ing compressor stations at smaller spacings, such `as l5
take any desired form, and is represented here schemati
cally as including a venturi 12. into which the gas is de
livered from jet 13. The temperature of the gas intro«
duced by the jet into the transmission line is reduced upon
20 association with the gas in the line. The effect of this
temperature reduction is to -suck gas from upstream and
thereby increase the pressure in the line downstream of
the jet.
Gas is fed to the gas jet compressor 11 through a con
power is needed to maintain a given pressure boost in the 25 duit 14 which receives gas from the transmission line 10,
preferably upstream from the gas jet compressor 11.
line. It has not been practical with conventional com
In order to provide the heat which is the primary
pressor stations to utilize this horsepower saving, as the
energy force for compressing gas in the transmission
cost per horsepower of the small horsepower stations
line 10, a heater indicated generally at 15 is provided.
greatly exceeds that `of the larger horsepower installations
at greater spacing. This is true primarily because the 30 For purposes of economy, it is preferred that the heater
miles apart, that approximately 20% less total horse
compressors, pipes, valves and fitting sizes are `determined
by the flow being handled rather than by the horsepower
requirements.
From the above it will be seen that there is needed a new
be fired by gas from the transmission line, but it will be
understood that other forms of heater might be used.
It will be apparent that the gas passing through the heater
1S in conduit 14 is heated but is not ignited and the
approach to compressor stations in which only a fraction 35 chemical structure of the gas in the conduit 14 remains
unchanged as it passes through said heater.
of the gas in the line need be handled by the pressure
Where gas for the heater is taken from the transmission
boosting equipment to permit the utilization of more
line, it may be drawn from the system at any desired
closely spaced compressor stations. Accordingly, it is an
point. For instance, in FIGURE l this gas is drawn
object of this invention to provide compressor stations in
which the Istation will handle only `a small percentage of 40 through line 16 from conduit 14 adjacent the upstream
end of conduit 14. A Valve 17 controls flow of the fuel
the gas in the line, thus permitting the utilization of small
to the burner '18 of heater 15. By varying the setting
diameter pipes, valves, fittings, etc.
of valve 17, and B.t.u. output of heater 15 may be con
The use ‘of compressors to pressurize even a small per
trolled to heat the gas passing through conduit 14 to the
cantage of the gas in a pipe line involves relatively high
horsepower -apparatus of large size having many moving 45 desired temperature.
For purposes of eñîciency and to avoid overheating of
parts. It is therefore an object of this invention to pro
heater 15, means should be provided for insuring the pas
vide the necessary energy in a gas sidestream for pressuriz
sage of a predetermined volume of gas through the heater
ing the transmission line by heating the gas to a high tem~
perature rather than pressurizing it to 'a high pressure. 50 15. For this purpose, a relatively small horsepower com
pressor 19 may be provided in line 14. The compressor
Inasmuch as the primary energy force is a heater which
should be sized to provide a ratio of pressures upstream
incorporates no moving parts and has extremely high ef
and downstream of the compressor which will insure ade
fìciency, considerable saving both in initial cost and main
quate flow through the heater |15.
tenance of the compressor station is possible.
Conventional compressor stations require the constant 55 »It is preferred that means be provided for controlling
the amount of gas passing through the conduit 14. For
attendance of operating and maintenance personnel. It
this purpose a valve 21 may be provided in the conduit
is, therefore, another object of this invention to provide,
and by properly setting valveY Z1 the ñow through the
in combination with apparatus for heating `a sidestream
conduit 14 may be controlled.
yfrom a transmission line and injecting the sidestream into
`In some instances it may be desirable to in part by
the line to increase its pressure, a control system for auto 60
pass heater 15. A bypass conduit 22 controlled by a
matically controlling operation of the compressor station
and thus eliminating the necessity of constant Iattendance
valve 23 will permit such bypass.
It is contemplated
that in normal operation the valve 23 will remain closed
and the setting of valves 17 and 2'1 and the output of
Other objects, features and `advantages of the inven
tion will be apparent from the drawing, the specification 65 compressor 19 will be regulated to provide the desired
amount of heated gas without utilizing the bypass 2.2.
and claims.
In operation approximately 10% of the gas passing
In the drawing wherein two forms of this invention
of operating personnel.
are illustrated:
n
FIGURE l is Ia schematic view of a compressor statlon
constructed in accordance with this invention and man
through line 10 is desirably bypassed through conduit 14.
The compressor may be of any desired type driven by
any desired form of prime mover, and need only com
70 press the gas suflicient to insure passing of the desired
volume of gas through the heater. This compressor is
FIGURE 2 is a schematic view of a compressor station v
ually controlled; and
constructed in accordance with this invention and pro
relatively small as compared to compressors convention
3,045,893
3
4
ally employed in compressor stations and need only de
velop a few hundred horsepower.
absolutely necessary to maintain the compressor output
below a predetermined maximum, but in the absence of
this type of control excessive compressor output will cause
cycling of the outlet pressure controller. It is also ap
parent that the compressor may be controlled directly in
The slightly compressed gas passes through check valve
24 to the heater 15 where it is heated. - The check valve
24 prevents reverse flow of gas in conduit 14 upon the
occurrence of any 4malfunction of the system. The heater
A15, being controlled by valve |17, heats the gas passing
through the heater to the desired temperature and dis
charges it through line 1'4 to the gas jet compressor 1.1.
the manner indicated in the drawing, or it may be in
directly controlled by the differential controller system Áfor
maintaining a predetermined percentage of ñow of gas
through line 14. This system might regulate the flow
through line 14 by varying the speed of the compressor
The compressor in turn utilizes the heat of the gas as
the primary energy source for compressing the gas in
the main line 10.
Referring to FIGURE 2, there is shown a form of
this invention in which the compressor system is auto
to maintain a predetermined percentage of ilow through
line 14.
The various differential controllers and burner valve
control may be operated by instrument air and may each
matically controlled. The line 10, conduit 14, compres
be provided by controllers sold by the Foxborro Company
sor 19, jet compressor 11, and heater ‘1S are identical
with those illustrated and described in FIGURE 1,’ and
they operate in the same manner except that the system
and known as Type 40 Stabilog. As is well known to
those skilled in the art, these controllers may accomplish
the diiïerent functions hereinabove described by the man
ner in which they are connected in the system.
In using instrument air the valves 41 and 28 would
is automatically controlled.
The output of the heater is controlled in accordance
with the pressure in the line 10 downstream of the jet
compressor 111. Such a control is indicated at 25 and
is sensitive to the pressure in line 10 through a pressure
sensing device 26 and a connecting conduit 27. In accord
ance with the pressure conditions sensed by the instru
ment 26, the burner valve control 25 regulates the degree
of opening of burner valve 28 through a control conduit
preferably be two-way diaphragm-operated motor valves,
of which many different forms are available and well
lrnown to those skilled in the art.
It will be apparent from the foregoing that the amount
of compressor horsepower required for a given length of
main line is much less than in conventional compressor
installations, and may be reduced to as low as approxi
mately 10%, or less, than the horsepower normally re
quired. As the main energy source is provided by a
‘It is also desirable to control heater output in response
to the temperature of the gas leaving the heater. For this 30 high-efficiency heater, low `fuel consumption is obtained,
and as there are no moving parts in the main energy
purpose a temperature-sensing device 31 may be asso
source, maintenance of the system is much less than con
ciated with conduit 14 and signals from this device are
ventional compressor systems. The cost of the system is
received by the burner valve control 25 through conduit
much less than conventional systems, both due to the fact
32. Thus the burner valve control 25 is sensitive both
that the piping, iìttings, Valves, etc. -may be of small size,
to temperature in line 14 and pressure in line 10, and will
and that the heater »1S is much less costly than conven
control the heater output to maintain this temperature
tional compressors of the size normally employed at com
and pressure within desired ranges.
pressor stations. In fact, the entire station has very few
The compressor should desirably maintain a predeter
working parts, and therefore has very little maintenance.
mined diiîerential thereacross to insure adequate ñow of
gas lthrough heater ‘15. For this purpose a differential 40 The `station can be left unattended and, because of the
small size compressors employed, spare portable com
controller 32 is sensitive to the pressure upstream and
pressors can be used to replace compressors should any
downstream of compressor 19 through lines 33 and 34
trouble occur. Additional savings result from the abil
and controls the output of the compressor through a
ity to eliminate all buildings normal to conventional com
control conduit 35.
Desirably the volume of gas passed through conduit 45 pressor stations and to reduce spare parts inventory. Also
equipment, such as large cranes required on conventional
14 is a percentage of the volume of gas passing through
stations, Will be eliminated, as well as dwellings for con
the line 10. To maintain this percentage within a pre
ventional maintenance and operating crews.
determined range, a control device for controlling the
A further -advantage of this invention is that a higher
relative volume of flow through line 14 should be pro
vided. Such a control may be provided by a ditïrential 50 line pack is obtained by boosting the line pressure on fre
quent intervals. This assists the gas «transmission com
controller 36 receiving signals through lines 37 and 38
which sense the pressure conditions in lines 10` and 14
panics in supplying iiuctuating ñows from the line pack
through the medium of orifice plates 39 and 40, respec
when necessary.
The foregoing disclosure and description of the inven
tively. In accordance with the differential in pressure at
the oriñce plates 39 and 40, the differential controller 55 tion is illustrative and explanatory thereof and various
_changes in the size, shape and materials, as well as in the
adjusts the opening of valve 41 through control conduit
details of the illustrated construction, may be made with
42 .to maintain the desired percentage of ilow in line 14.
in the scope of the appended claims without departing
It will -be appreciated that the several controllers are
from the spirit of the invention.
inter-related in their operation, and, as certain conditions
change, the action of one controller will influence the 60 What is claimed is:
action of another controller. For instance, a decrease in
line pressure upstream of the jet compressor would re
sult in a reduced ñow of gas through line 14, and this
of course would result in increasing the temperature of
gas leaving heater 15. When this occurs the temperature
1. Apparatus for increasing pressure in a gas transmis
sion line comprising, a gas transmission line, a jet com
pressor in the line, a branch conduit receiving gas from
the line and feeding lthe gas to the jet compressor, a com
to reduce the output of the heater 15.
It will be appreciated that all «of the controls shown in
FIGURE 2 are merely desirable and not necessary to
pressor in the -branch conduit for maintaining positive
ñow through the conduit in one direction, and heater
means for heating the gas in the branch conduit whereby
'the gas -fed to the jet compressor through said conduit
is at a greater temperature and pressure than line temper
automatic operation of the system. For instance, the
ature and pressure.
burner valve control may be utilized alone and may be
sensitive only to the pressure in line 10 as a primary
means of controlling the system. To maintain a proper
flow through the heater the compressor output should be
maintained above -a predetermined minimum. It is not 75
2. Apparatus for increasing pressure in a gas transmis
sion line comprising, a gas transmission line, a jet com
pressor in the line, a branch conduit receiving gas from
the line and feeding the gas to the jet compressor, a
sensing device 31 would signal the burner valve control
compressor in the branch conduit for maintaining posi
3,045,893
5
tive flow through the conduit in one direction, heater
means for heating the gas in the branch conduit whereby
the gas fed to the jet compressor through said conduit is
at a greater temperature and pressure than line temper
vature and pressure, and means for controlling the B.t.u. Ul
output of said heater Ámeans in response to the pressure
in the transmission line downstream of the jet compressor.
3. Apparatus for increasing pressure in a gas trans
mission line comprising, a gas transmission line, a jet
6
mission line dowstream of the jet compressor, and means
including a valve controlling ilow through said branch
conduit and maintaining a predetermined ratio of ñow be
tween the conduit and main line.
8. Apparatus for increasing pressure in a gas trans
mission line comprising, a gas transmission line, a jet
compressor in the line, a branch conduit receiving gas
from the line and feeding the gas to the jet compressor, a
compressor in the branch conduit for maintaining posi
compressor in the line, a branch conduit receiving gas 10 tive flow through the conduit in one direction, heater
means for heating the gas in the branch conduit whereby
from the line and «feeding the gas to the jet compressor,
the gas fed to the jet compressor through said conduit is at
a compressor in the branch conduit for maintaining
a greater temperature and pressure than line temperature
positive flow through the conduit in one direction, heater
and pressure, means controlling the B.t.u. output of said
means for heating the gas in the branch conduit whereby
heater means in response to the pressure in the trans
the gas fed to the jet compressor through said conduit is
mission line downstream of the jet compressor, means
controlling said compressor in the branch conduit to
maintain a predetermined minimum pressure diiîerential
lt-hereacross, and means including a valve controlling ñow
the transmission line downstream of the jet compressor
and in response to the temperature of the gas in said 20 through said branch conduit and maintaining a predeter
mined ratio of ñow between the conduit and main line.
conduit downstream of the heater means.
9. The apparatus of claim 8 in which the means con
4. Apparatus for increasing pressure in a gas trans
trolling the compressor in the branch conduit maintains
mission line comprising, a gas transmission line, a jet
a predetermined maximum as Well as minimum pressure
compressor in the line, a branch conduit receiving gas
from the line and feeding the gas to the jet compressor, 25 differential across said compressor.
10. Apparatus for increasing pressure in a gas transmis
a compressor in the branch conduit for maintaining posi
sion line comprising, a gas transmission line, a jet com
ltive ilow through the conduit in one direction, heater
pressor in the line, a branch conduit receiving gas from
means for heating the gas in the branch conduit whereby
the line and feeding the gas to the jet compressor, means
the gas fed to the jet compressor through said conduit
is at greater temperature and pressure than the tem 30 for causing a predetermined percentage of the gas in
said transmission line to pass through said branch conduit,
perature and pressure, and means controlling said com
and heater means for heating the gas in the branch con
pressor in the branch conduit to maintain a predetermined
duit whereby the gas fed to the jet compressor through
minimum pressure differential thereacross.
said conduit is at a greater temperature and pressure
5. Apparatus -for increasing pressure in a gas trans
mission line comprising, a gas transmission line, a jet 35 than line temperature and pressure.
11. Apparatus for increasing pressure in a gas transmis
compressor in the line, a branch conduit receiving gas
sion line comprising, a gas transmission line, a jet com
from the line and feeding the gas to the jet compressor,
pressor in the line, a branch conduit receiving gas from
a compressor in the branch conduit for maintaining posi
the line and feeding the gas to the jet compressor, means
ytive iiow through the conduit in one direction, heater
means `for heating the gas in the branch conduit whereby 40 for causing a predetermined percentage of the gas in said
transmission line to pass through said branch conduit,
the gas fed to the jet compressor through said conduit
at a greater temperature and pressure than line tempera
ture and pressure, and means controlling the B.t.u. out
put of said heater means in response Ito the pressure in
and heater means for heating the gas in the branch con
is at a greater temperature and pressure than line tem
duit whereby the gas fed to the jet compressor through
perature and pressure, and means controlling the B.t.u.
said conduit is at a greater temperature and pressure
output of said heater means in response to the pressure
in the transmission line downstream of the jet com 45 than line temperature and pressure, and means controlling
the B.t.u. output of said heater means in response to the
pressor and means controlling said compressor in the
pressure in the transmission line downstream of the jet
branch conduit to maintain a predetermined minimum
compressor.
pressure differential thereacross.
12. Apparatus for increasing pressure in a gas transmis
6. Apparatus for increasing pressure in a gas trans
mission line comprising, a gas transmission line, a jet 50 sion line comprising, a branch conduit having an inlet
and an outlet, a jet compressor connected to the outlet of
compressor in the line, a branch conduit receiving gas
said conduit, heater means for heating gas in said branch
from the line and feeding the gas to the iet compressor,
conduit upstream of said jet compressor, and a compres
a compressor in the branch conduit for maintaining posi
sor in the branch conduit upstream of said jet compressor
tive flow through the conduit in one direction, heater
means for heating the gas in the branch conduit whereby 55 for maintaining positive flow through the conduit from
the gas fed to the jet compressor through said conduit
its inlet to its outlet, whereby the gas fed to the jet com
is at a greater temperature and pressure than line tem
pressor through said conduit is at a greater temperature
perature and pressure, and means including a valve con
and pressure than at the inlet of said conduit.
trolling ilow through said branch conduit and main
13. The apparatus of claim 12 in combination with
taining a predetermined ratio of ñow between the con 60 means for controlling said compressor in response to the
duit and main line.
pressure diiïerential thereacross.
7. Apparatus -for increasing pressure in a gas trans
References Cited in the íile of this patent
mission line comprising, a gas transmission line, a jet
compressor in the line, a branch conduit receiving gas
UNITED lSTATES PATENTS
from the line and feeding the gas to the jet compressor, a 65 1,737,894
Reynolds ______________ __ Dec. 3, 1929
compressor in the branch conduit for maintaining posi
tive flow through the conduit in one direction, heater
means for heating the gas in the branch conduit whereby
the gas fed to the jet compressor through said conduit is at
a greater temperature and pressure than line temperature 70
and pressure, means controlling the B.t.u. output of said
heater means in response to the pressure in the trans
1,948,907
2,170,587
2,519,531
Egli _________________ _., Feb. 27, 1934
Crocker et al __________ __ Aug. 22, 1939
Worn _______________ ___ Aug. 22, 1950
2,776,087
Walter ____a ___________ __ Jan. 1, 1957
310,331
Germany ______ ____ ___-- Ian. 14, 1919
FOREIGN PATENTS
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