NYSEARCH RANGE™ Tool
(Range of Acceptability for Natural Gas Equipment)
Description: NYSEARCH completed a comprehensive, geographically diverse study that determines the impacts of varying gas compositions on performance of installed residential appliances. This data is now available in an easy-to-use online tool. Gas composition data is input and results are generated for each data set, including easy-to-review graphical depictions. By comparing the projections to safety- and operability-based performance limits, the range of acceptable gas supplies for a service area or region can be determined.
Status: This tool is now available online to the project sponsors (who already have access) and to companies who can purchase an online subscription to this solution.
Cost: The cost for a one-year subscription to this online tool is $7500.
The addition of new gas supplies such as shale gas, coal-bed methane, imported LNG, and bio-derived gases is expected to accelerate, leading to wider ranges of natural gas compositions being distributed in North America. Certain residential appliances may be sensitive to changes in natural gas composition due to design characteristics, adjustment practices, or lack of maintenance. As noted by the National Gas Council’s Interchangeability Work Group, additional data are needed to characterize the impact of changing gas supplies on appliances. Consequently, in 2011, NYSEARCH completed a project that fills information gaps regarding natural gas interchangeability for in-service appliances. A key aspect of this two-phase program was performed by etaPartners, a spinoff company of Environ Corporation, and focused on extensive field testing in a range of customer territories to collect performance data.
The data collected breaks down into two areas:
An in-service appliance database was assembled by merging field performance data collected in this project with other data previously collected by a sponsoring LDC. The resulting dataset includes performance characteristics (gas flow rate; flue gas O2, CO, and NOx concentrations; gas manifold pressure; and flame characteristics) for about 3100 residential appliances.
The impact of gas composition changes on appliance CO emissions and flame characteristics was determined by testing appliances in a laboratory. This dataset was enhanced by incorporating laboratory results previously collected by sponsoring LDCs and additional companies who shared data from testing at higher elevations.
To evaluate performance changes for populations of appliances, the laboratory-based CO and AGA Flame Code correlations were applied to the field performance database. The result is a spreadsheet-based interchangeability assessment tool.
The NYSEARCH RANGE™ tool projects the performance projects the performance characteristics for appliance populations when new or changing gas supplies are distributed. The output consists of histograms for appliance CO emissions and AGA flame code. By comparing the projections to safety- and operability-based performance limits, the range of acceptable gas supplies for a service area or region can be determined.