Methane Maps of DISH and Flower Mound (Texas) - Likely Indication of Benzene and VOCs


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This map shows results of drive-by emissions sampling in DISH, Texas and neighboring Flower Mound as well as other parts of the Dallas-Fort Worth Area. The large plumes are possible indications of emissions of toxic VOCs from natural gas compression and storage facilities.

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Methane Maps of DISH and Flower Mound (Texas) - Likely Indication of Benzene and VOCs

  1. 1. Methane Mapping Chris Rella, Ph. D., Director of R&D ( Picarro, Inc.
  2. 2. What is Methane? <ul><li>Present in the atmosphere at low levels – 1.8 parts-per-million (ppm) </li></ul><ul><li>Primary constituent of natural gas </li></ul><ul><li>Emitted by a variety of sources </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Farms </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Landfills </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Wetlands </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Industrial activities of all types </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Powerful greenhouse gas </li></ul><ul><li>Non-toxic at ppm levels </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Sometimes accompanied by other more toxic chemicals </li></ul></ul>
  3. 3. Methane Mapping <ul><li>Our goal is to provide a map of airborne methane for: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Rapid hunting and tracking of natural gas product leaks </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Distinguishing between different sources of methane (both natural and human) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Identifying areas of concern for more careful, quantitative studies of airborne emissions </li></ul></ul><ul><li>We need to build a methane measurement tool that is </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Fast – responds in seconds </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Accurate – Measures methane, and only methane, very accurately </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Easy – something anyone can use </li></ul></ul>
  4. 4. <ul><li>World’s Highest Performance and Easiest to Use Analyzers </li></ul>What is Picarro? 10”
  5. 5. Picarro – world class greenhouse gas monitors <ul><li>Picarro Technology chosen as the Gold Standard by the UN’s World Meteorological Organization (WMO) </li></ul><ul><li>Hundreds of units installed in 45 countries and on all 7 continents and in every ecosystem imaginable </li></ul><ul><li>Used by virtually every major international GHG monitoring network: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>- NOAA - Australia CSIRO </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>- Chinese Meteorological Agency - Environment Canada </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>EU’s ICOS - German EPA </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>France’s LSCE - Irish EPA </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Japan’s NIES - Swiss EPA </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Korean Meteorological Association - Too many universities to mention </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. What’s inside the box? <ul><li>Cavity Ringdown Spectroscopy </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Cavity” – 10 inches long, but 10 mile path length = parts-per-billion </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Ringdown” – this is a measurement of time = accurate </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Spectroscopy” – measures ONLY methane = not confused by other chemicals </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Ruggedized for use in the field </li></ul>
  7. 7. Measure Anywhere Vessels Aircraft Highways Telecom Buildings Cities Fields Mountains Blimps Landfills
  8. 8. Methane measurements on the road <ul><li>Picarro CRDS methane (model G1202) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>ppb resolution for both gases in just a few seconds </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Accurate, robust, and easy-to-deploy </li></ul></ul><ul><li>High resolution GPS </li></ul><ul><li>Batteries for mobile operation </li></ul><ul><li>Reporting of data directly into Google Earth to make the maps </li></ul>Gas snorkel GPS antenna batteries Picarro CRDS
  9. 9. A typical map <ul><li>The “ribbon” of data shows where we traveled </li></ul><ul><li>The height above the ground shows the methane concentration at that location </li></ul>800 ft above ground = 1 ppm of methane 55 mph Methane: +0.1 ppm
  10. 10. DISH, Tx – Wind Data Measurements taken @ 1-3 pm Wind from the NW
  11. 11. <ul><li>Width of peak + direction of wind indicates a rough “footprint” of where the source is likely to be </li></ul><ul><li>Measurements with different wind directions can be used to triangulate the source </li></ul>Where is the source? wind
  12. 12. Roadside source, looking downwind <ul><li>No obvious source visible on satellite image from 2001 </li></ul><ul><li>On-site inspection would reveal likely source </li></ul><ul><li>Remember: high concentrations does not necessarily mean big emissions! </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Distance to source </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Wind speed </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Still air vs. turbulent air </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Methane mapping is not the same as emissions quantification </li></ul>Methane: +11 ppm wind
  13. 13. Outlook for methane mapping <ul><li>Measuring methane accurately, in real time, from a vehicle is a powerful tool to help identify and quantify sources of methane </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Leak detection </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Source identification </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Choosing target areas for future measurements </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Further work: to extend this technique to provide quantification of emissions (in tons / year) for methane and other chemicals </li></ul>