The advent of electricity in the late 1800s holds significant importance in the Industrial Revolution as it facilitated a high rate of manufacturing and faster communication, the two most important things even today. But electricity is not available everywhere and that is when you need a generator. Generators are the combination of an electrical generator and engine (Prime Mover) forming a single piece of equipment known as a Genset.
In Hilly areas or remote factories that don’t have power stations, the use of genetics is crucial. Though there are several types of fuel including petroleum oil and electricity that can power a genset, the use of natural gas is cleaner and more efficient. It can power generators in emergencies and can be used as portable generators as well.
Gensets that use natural gas as fuel are known as Gas Gensets. These are regarded as the most affordable and cleaner option in comparison to other gensets that use diesel and other mechanical motion-based energy (converting dynamic energy into electrical energy) options.
Gas Genset and How it Works
In an era where environmental sustainability is gaining paramount importance, gas gensets have emerged as a promising solution for clean and efficient power generation. Before we delve into the technical aspects and applications of gas gensets, shedding light on their functionality, advantages, and potential impact on the energy landscape, let’s see what a Gas Genset is.
Gas gensets, also known as gas-powered generators or gas engine generators, are robust power generation systems that utilize natural gas or biogas as their primary fuel source. These gensets consist of an internal combustion engine, fueled by gas, coupled with an alternator to generate electricity. The engine converts the chemical energy of the gas into mechanical energy, which is then transformed into electrical energy by the alternator. Let’s see how gas gensets work:
Gas gensets employ combustion process where fuel, in this case, natural gas or biogas, is mixed with air and ignited within the engine's combustion chamber. This controlled explosion transfers energy to the engine's pistons, initiating the power generation process.
Gas gensets are renowned for their high efficiency, with some models achieving efficiency levels as high as 45-50%. This efficiency is primarily attributed to the utilization of natural gas or biogas, which have higher calorific values and cleaner combustion compared to conventional fossil fuels.
Using a 125kVA gas genset, generates about 115kW power and can be used to run 2 ACs, 1 refrigerator, 1 Microwave, 1 coffee maker, 6 lights, 3 laptops, 1 monitor, 1 printer, 1 satellite decoder, 2 TVs, etc.
Cogeneration: Heat and Power
Gas gensets can also be integrated into combined heat and power (CHP) systems, enabling the simultaneous production of electricity and useful heat. The cogeneration process maximizes energy efficiency by utilizing the waste heat generated during power generation for various heating applications, such as district heating or industrial processes.
Lower Emissions: Environment Friendly
Gas gensets produce significantly lower emissions compared to diesel or gasoline generators. The use of natural gas, a cleaner-burning fuel, results in reduced greenhouse gas emissions, nitrogen oxides (NOx), and particulate matter. The emission of nitrogen, sulfur and carbon dioxide is extremely low in comparison to diesel
Biogas gensets, which use renewable sources such as organic waste or sewage, offer even greater environmental benefits by utilizing waste products for power generation.
Applications of Gas Genset
Gas Gensets are available in various apparent power ratings such as 10.5kVA, 15kVA, 20kVA, 25kVA, 100kVA, 125kVA, 285kVA, 315kVA, etc., and thus can be used for various household and commercial applications.
Gas gensets find extensive applications in the industrial sector, providing reliable and efficient power for manufacturing processes, data centers, and other energy-intensive operations. The ability to integrate gas gensets into combined heat and power (CHP) systems further enhances their appeal by minimizing energy wastage and reducing overall energy costs.
Commercial establishments, including hospitals, hotels, shopping malls, and office complexes, benefit from gas gensets as backup power sources. Gas gensets ensure uninterrupted power supply during grid outages, safeguarding critical operations and maintaining a comfortable environment for occupants. Since these gensets are very efficient and use cleaner fuel, fulfilling govt. mandates in various states, these are go-to options for such commercial applications.
Remote Areas and Off-Grid Power
Gas gensets also offer a viable solution for power generation in remote areas or off-grid locations where access to traditional power infrastructure is limited or non-existent. Their flexibility in utilizing natural gas or biogas makes them suitable for diverse environments, including rural communities and isolated islands. Moreover, these gas gensets are also available in portable sizes, which makes them the preferred choice.
Renewable Energy Integration
One can utilize gas gensets as backup power during periods of low renewable energy availability, to enhance the the overall stability and reliability of the power grid. Therefore, Gas gensets can serve as a bridge between intermittent renewable energy sources, such as solar or wind, and a reliable power supply.
Gas gensets have emerged as a sustainable and efficient alternative to traditional fossil fuel-powered generators. Their technical prowess, coupled with their diverse applications, make them an attractive proposition for industries, commercial buildings, remote areas, and renewable energy integration. With their lower emissions and higher efficiency, gas gensets contribute to a greener, more resilient energy landscape, paving the way for a sustainable future for all. Many state governments tend to limit/ban the use of diesel power gensets due to high carbon emissions, which makes gas gensets a far better investment than others.
- Last updated on Nov 20, 2023