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Methane Number

Did you know that the methane number of a gas provides an indication of the knock tendency of a fuel? It is a product of the different constituent gases within the natural gas, particularly the proportions of methane, ethane, propane and butane. Understanding the knock resistance is important when specificing an engine for a gas-powered combined heat and power plant.

Methane, which has a high knock resistance, is given an index value of 100. Hydrogen, which burns quickly relative to methane, has a low knock resistance and is given the index value of 0.  If a gas mixture has a methane number of 80, its knock resistance is equivalent to that of a gas comprised of 80% methane and 20% hydrogen. There are gas constituents which have a higher methane number than 100 therefore it is also possible for a gas composite to have a higher methane number than 100. Biogas often has a methane number in excess of 100.

Understanding the methane number of the natural gas fuel is an important factor when determining the appropriate engine version to select.

To find out more you can contact your local sales office via via our website contact form.

You can also follow Clarke Energy on Twitter: @clarkeenergy.

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