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Universal Vortex Inc.
410 Princeton Hightstown Road
Princeton Junction, NJ 08550
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A non-freeze gas pressure reducer (VPR) configured as the proprietary Single Flow Vortex Tube allows preventing the likelihood of unheated gas freezing in pressure reduction. The VPR is fuel gas saving and environmentally friendly alternative to high pressure gas preheating upstream of pressure regulation. 

VPR-Drawing [320x200].JPG

In the VPR, high pressure gas expands in the unit’s tangential nozzle of a fixed size down to the delivery pressure. While in the VPR cylindrical part, the rotating low-pressure gas undergoes energy division (vortex phenomenon), forming two currents: cold and hot. The currents coexist in the VPR and exit the unit through a single discharge orifice. Prior to exiting the VPR, the hottest portion of the hot flow is internally directed to warm up the unit’s inlet nozzle (self-heating provision), The vortex cold and the hot flows mixing up at the VPR discharge negate their temperature differences.Therefore, the temperature of the combined flow at the VPR single discharge reflects only a Joule Thomson temperature drop in the expanded gas.
VPR-Mini-image1 [320x200].JPG

The Single Stream (SS) design provides for the most intensive energy division in the vortex flow and accordingly to the most effective spot heating

VPR Features:
  • Self-Heating device that needs no external heating
  • Generates heat as an outcome of the routine gas pressure reduction
  • Steady non-freeze performance regardless of the gas quality
  • No moving parts
  • No maintenance
  • Easy to install or retrofit in new or existing facilities




VPRS-CNG for Virtual Pipeline/Off-Grid Applications:

Universal Vortex's unique Vortex Pressure Regulation Station (VPRS-CNG) system is used globally to increase the efficiency of Virtual Pipeline applications. Our technology allows for the complete elimination of gas preheat upstream of the pressure reduction phase, and in most cases completely eliminates the need for any post-heating prior to delivery of pressure regulated gas to the downstream gas consumer. Using an array of Vortex Pressure Reducers (VPR), we can regulate any conceivable flow from and to any conceivable pressure. The system consists of the Vortex Array, solenoid actuators and a PLC to control the Vortex Array, an ambient air heat exchanger to increase the pressure regulated gas temperature, and a buffer/receiver to ensure constant pressure and flow to the delivery Metering/Regulation Station.

This system, like all of Universal Vortex Inc.'s pressure regulation solutions has no moving parts, consumes no fuel gas, generates no CO2/methane emissions, is not liquid-sensitive, and requires no maintenance, ever!

New! Pipeline & Gas Journal Feature: Link to March 2016 Feature Article

Case Study:

1000 nm3/h VPRS-CNG Virtual Pipeline Decompression Station, Thailand


A uniquely designed VPR-CNG provides for a single-stage pressure reduction of non-preheated gas from 3,000-4,000 psi to a desirable downstream pressure of a typical 60-100 psi.


Peak Shaving Case Study:

P3045421 [320x200].JPGVPR-CNG-3 [320x200].JPG

Questar Gas (Utah-USA) utilizes some 25 Self-Heating VPR units of two different sizes in its mobile CNG decompression facilities for a single-stage non-freeze gas pressure reduction from 3,000 psi to approx. 150 psi.

Questar's assessment of the VPR performance/effectiveness can be seen

The VPR-CNG is available in five standard sizes. A combination of the standard VPR sizes or a customized design provides for, practically, unlimited VPR capacity.

Using its proprietary concept of process configuration and pressure/flow control, Universal Vortex designs the VPR based CNG pressure regulation systems to satisfy one of the following process criteria:

- constant CNG flow under depleting tank's pressure
- duration of the CNG tank complete depletion;
- variable discharge flow.

If applicable, the VPR-CNG pressure regulating system may include the energy saving (no combustion) and 'green' Vortex after-heating provision to increase the pressure regulated gas temperature.

Click to view the VPRS-CNG Conceptual Flow Diagram and Process Design


The principal field of Self-Heating VPR applications in gas distribution is District Pressure Regulation Stations (PRS) and Farm Taps. For the former, the VPR operating as a primary pressure regulator, eliminates the gas preheat generally applied upstream of conventional pressure regulators.
In the Farm Taps application the VPR allows to avoid a multistage pressure cut common at high pressure facilities.   

To maintain a constant flow in the VPR’s non changeable orifice under variable inlet flow or to address the gas variable demand, a VPR based PRS usually consists of multiple VPR runs, each run equipped with an upstream monitoring valve. Commonly, each monitoring valve has an individual (within MAOP) set up pressure.


The above picture shows a District PRS with two VPR, each with an upstream Fisher 627M sensing the downstream pressure. The Fishers adjust the VPR inlet pressure in accordance with the gas flow demand, while the main pressure cut takes place in the VPGH.

The VPR is available in standard or customized sizes.

The VPR based Farm Tap installation generally includes an ‘on’/’off’ solenoid valve, an inter-stage receiver accumulating the pressure regulated gas and a fine tune pressure regulator to maintain the delivery pressure.

  • High pressure gas from the pipeline passes the ‘on’/’off’’ solenoid valve and undergoes non freeze pressure reduction in the VPR- down to the current pressure in the inter-stage receiver.

  • Since the VPR capacity will at all times equal or exceed the delivery flow rate, an inter-stage receiver is utilized to balance supply and demand.  The gas pressure in the receiver is raised until the receiver is at the high pressure set point; whereupon flow is stopped and not started until the receiver is depleted to the low set point. 

VPR-with Downstream Receiver [320x200].JPG

Case Study: The VPR, buffer receiver (gray pipe) and on/off solenoid valve assembly operating in the boiler fuel gas pressure conditioning system at Rock Spring Power Plant, MD. Feed: pipeline gas @ 600-1000 psi. Gas delivery pressure 50-100 psi. Gas flow rate is up to 360,000 scfd.

The VPR is available in four standard sizes or can be customized per application conditions. The VPR sizing depends on the gas flow parameters and is determined by the unit's (or combination of the units) ability to deliver a maximal projected gas flow at the anticipated minimal inlet gas pressure. .


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