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The difference between CNG and LPG

Feb. 28, 2022

The production of natural gas is possible for hundreds of years deep in the earth. Through a pumping process, it can be extracted to the surface. After extraction, it enters a cleaning and refining process to remove it. Natural gas processing has many by-products such as ethane, propane, butane, pentane and other higher weight hydrocarbons. These gases are used in our daily lives in many forms, such as CNG, LPG, etc. The facts about CNG, LPG and the difference between CNG and LPG are very interesting.

 

What is compressed natural gas (CNG)?

CNG is actually a compressed form of pure methane gas. It is useful for making clean fuel without causing any pollution and it is almost clean for the atmosphere. That is why CNG is also called "clean fuel". Here, the compression is done at less than 1% of the volume at standard atmospheric pressure. It is stored and distributed in a hard container. Usually these containers are cylindrical or spherical in shape.


The difference between CNG and LPG

 

What is liquefied petroleum gas (LPG)?

LPG refers to liquefied petroleum gas. It is a mixture of light gaseous hydrocarbons such as propane, butane and some other light petroleum products. It is further converted into a liquid by applying a very high pressure. Its mass production is done in the refining process. This gas is filled into gas cylinders under high pressure. It is then further transported and stored conveniently and safely. To identify any leaks in pressurized cylinders, a small amount of mercaptan is being added to them. This is because it has an unpleasant odor.

 

Important differences between CNG and LPG

Sr No.ParameterCNGLPG
1. ComponentThe primary component in CNG is methane.The primary components in LPG are propane and butane.
2. UsagesIts primary use is as an alternative for fuel in automobiles.It has various uses such as heating and cooking in homes. They also have many other uses such as industrial and agricultural uses as well.
3. CostIt is cheaper comparatively.It is costlier comparatively.
4.Calorific ValueCNG has a much lesser calorific value.LPG has a much greater calorific value, so it burns at a much higher rate comparatively.
5.Greenhouse effectIt has very less greenhouse effect.It produces Carbon Dioxide as a greenhouse gas, but it is much cleaner compared to gasoline.
6. Safety MeasureDue to its rapid dispersal into the air, it is very safe for use in vehicles.It is highly flammable because it is much heavier than air. It is much suitable for cooking and not for vehicles.
7.SourcesMainly CNG is obtained from the oil wells, methane wells, and coal wells and also from natural gas wells.Its main source is through the extraction process of natural gas from the reservoir.

Some important points

1. Availability: Both CNG and LPG have extensive distribution networks. However, LPG is more available to retail consumers than CNG. 2.

2. Cost-effectiveness: CNG is cheaper than LPG. However, propane produces almost twice as much energy as natural gas. Therefore, LPG can be considered more cost effective than natural gas. 2.

3. Safety and environmental impact: CNG produces greenhouse gases when burned, but it is still more environmentally friendly than other fuels such as gasoline or LPG. Likewise, CNG is safer because it is lighter than air and disperses quickly when released.

Uses of CNG and LPG: CNG is used as a fuel in the automobile and locomotive sectors. LPG is used as a heating oil substitute, for cooking, for refrigeration purposes and as a fuel for cars.

 

Conclusion

Apart from the fact that both are safe and popular fuels, there are still differences between CNG and LPG. In the early days, LPG was considered a clean fuel only. But CNG has since replaced most gasoline and diesel driven vehicles. Besides the fact that CNG is a very clean fuel, it is not suitable for cooking because of its volatility. Therefore LPG is still suitable for cooking. There is no doubt that both CNG and LPG are very useful fuels, but there are some unavoidable disadvantages.

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