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2015Research Report

Reciprocating Compressor Performance Augmentation Network (PAN) Technology Full‐Scale Field Test Results

W. Norman Shade, PE, ACI Services

Unit Packaging/Station Design

Pulsation Augmentation Network (PAN) technology employs a network of Tuning Section Transition (TST)‐collector junctions and manifold pipes for cancellation of pressure waves for pulsation control in reciprocating compressor systems. This eliminates virtually all the system pressure drop associated with pulsation control, which increases system efficiency and reduces the required BHP/MMSCFD. This is in contrast with conventional volume bottles, choke tubes and orifice plates that use damping, with resulting pressure drop, for pulsation control.

PAN technology uses the same manifold network to time the reflection of pressure waves to the cylinder suction and discharge when the valves are open to further reduce the pressure differential that the cylinder has to pump against. This is similar to the now very common application of tuned intake and exhaust manifolds on high‐performance engines. This further reduces the adiabatic horsepower required for compression across a compressor station. It can also be used to increase the mass flow rate through the compressor for a specified driver power rating by increasing the suction pressure at the cylinder during the suction event, and it reduces the required BHP/MMSCFD and increases the efficiency for the compression process.

The PAN technology is the result of 10 years of collaborative development by OPTIMUM Pumping Technology and ACI Services Inc. It was first introduced to the GMRC in 2007, which has supported some of the development progress since that time. Field tests in 2009 at El Paso’s Ellisburg station proved the PAN’s effectiveness in controlling pulsation and eliminating the pressure drop associated with pulsation control. The current project, that is the focus of this report, reconfirms that finding and further proves the ability of the PAN to reduce the BHP/MMSCFD as a result of manifold tuning.

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