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Vortex Heating in Pressure Regulation


The proprietary vortex heating technology eliminates or substantially reduces high pressure gas preheat in pressure regulation. The vortex heating is an energy saving and environmentally friendly (green) alternative to combustion/electrical gas heaters commonly used upstream of pressure regulators. In addition, the vortex heating technology increases the pressure regulated gas temperature - also without any artificial source of heating.

  • No lost gas
  • No carbon emissions
  • No maintenance
  • Green technology

The core of the vortex heating is a self heating vortex tube configured as a Dual Flow unit.

Vortex Dual Flow

In the VT, high pressure gas expands in the unit’s tangential nozzle of a fixed size down to the delivery pressure. • While in the VT cylindrical part, the rotating low-pressure gas undergoes energy division (vortex phenomenon), forming two currents: cold and hot. • The currents coexist in the VT and exit the unit either separately as the cold/dried and hot outlets • Prior to exiting the VT, the hottest portion of the hot flow is internally directed to warm up the unit’s inlet nozzle (self-heating provision), thus preventing the inlet depressurized flow freeze up.

A ‘generic’ vortex pressure regulation installation with vortex heating comprises a Self-Heating Vortex Tube (VT) that performs as a primary pressure regulator and a heat exchanger at the VT’s cold outlet to remove the vortex cold load from the gas. Ambient air is the most available ‘cold sink’ to absorb the VT’s cooling load. The warmed vortex ‘cold’ gas is then combined with the gas discharged from the VT’s hot outlet. The resulted raise in the pressure regulated gas temperature is, generally, equal to Joule-Thomson temperature drop in the pressure regulated gas. Thus, the vortex heating arrangement allows saving the energy that, otherwise, will be spent to preheat the gas to compensate the JT temperature reduction under given inlet and outlet pressures. Besides ambient air, any available low grade medium (including near-by transmission gas) at the application site can be used to warm up the VT cold outlet.

The actual free of charge vortex cooling load can be utilized (via glycol loop) for industrial applications in proximity to the gas pressure regulation facility.

The field of application of this UVI gas pressure regulation and thermal conditioning technique is:

  • Pipeline gas pressure regulation stations (PRS) and City Gate facilities
  • Power Plants and/or Compressor Stations equipped with gas turbines
  • Pressure To Power installation equipped with Energy Generating Devices: (Turbo Expander, Gas Let Down Pressure Generator, Expansion Engine, etc.) operating at natural gas pressure regulating facilities (pressure regulation station - PRS or wellhead
  • Vortex Cooling Heating

    A multi-run high flow Vortex Pressure Regulation Station
    with Self-Heating Vortex Tube used as a primary pressure regulator.
    The pressure regulated gas exit as a vortex cold and vortex hot outlet.

  • Click to see the Vortex PRS simulation data inUVI's article in Pipeline & Gas Journal (Reprint PDF)
  • Click to view an analysis of the Vortex Tube efficiency in Gas Turbine Fuel Gas Pressure and Thermal Conditioning (ppt)
  • Click to view an analysis of the Vortex Tube efficiency in Energy Generation (Turbo Expander Gas Pressure and Thermal Conditioning

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