Civil Construction Work Creates The Foundation For Gas-To-Liquids TerminalsMay 26, 2015
As our nation’s rich abundance of natural gas continues, efficient storage and transportation of this resource has become more and more important. In response the demand for gas-to-liquids (GTL) fuel has steadily increased since the liquid form of natural gas is much more efficient. Gas-to-liquids can also be used in a variety of industrial and fuel applications, are more environmentally friendly than many other fuels, and even have higher energy concentration than liquefied natural gas (LNG). There are multiple different processes for transforming natural gas into gas-to-liquids including the methanol to gasoline (MTG) process, syngas to gasoline plus process (STG+), and the Fishcher-Tropsch Process. Each of these different processes is performed in gas-to-liquids terminals that are specially designed to maximize the safety and efficiency of the process. In order for a gas-to-liquids terminal to meet its full potential it is crucial for it to be carefully constructed and maintained. This process begins with the initial civil construction work that is done before construction on the actual facility itself even begins.
Creating the Groundwork for Gas-to-Liquids TerminalsThe reason that civil work is so important for gas-to-liquids terminal construction is that it quite literally creates the groundwork for the ultimate efficiency and productivity of the future terminal. It ensures that the space surrounding the terminal is developed with an eye toward ease of access and that the foundation under the terminal itself is strong and solid, able to withstand weather, the wear and tear that comes with time, and other environmental conditions. On a more immediate level civil work also prepares the site for development and ensures that the actual construction of the facility itself will be able to proceed smoothly.
Civil Work Necessary for Gas-to-Liquids TerminalsThere are a variety of different aspects to good civil work. Some of the most important aspects for gas-to-liquids terminals include the following:
- Subgrade Stabilization - Subgrade stabilization is crucial because it ensures that the ground beneath the gas-to-liquid terminal and the nearby area are fully stabilized and will not move or suddenly shift. This in turn prevents damage to the foundation of the terminal which could be expensive to repair and may even compromise safety.
- Site Improvement and Prep - Prior to construction of the gas-to-liquid terminal and also prior to more advanced development of the worksite, the area will need to undergo site improvement and other preparations This typically entails removing any trees and vegetation, rocks, or other debris that may be in the way. The area will also undergo excavation and shoring and erosion control measures to protect the site from the elements during construction.
- Deep Foundations - Deep foundations are one of the most important elements of civil work since they will ultimately be responsible for bearing the weight of the gas-to-liquids terminal itself. The right type of piling will need to be selected and correctly driven to the proper depth.
- Concrete - Concrete is an important part of just about all industrial construction projects and the construction of gas-to-liquids terminals is certainly no exception. To ensure that the quality and integrity of the concrete is high it is important that the civil construction company meet all standards set by the American Concrete Institute (ACI) and also by ASTM International.
Special Considerations for Civil Work for Gas-to-Liquids TerminalsEvery project is different and naturally the priorities and concerns of one given project may vary from another. Civil construction projects for gas-to-liquids terminals will likely include some combination of the following special considerations:
- The project’s budget
- The required completion date and timeline
- Environmental factors present at the worksite
- The necessary production capacity and physical size of the gas-to-liquids terminal
- Regulations and codes put in place by local, state, and federal regulations.