Clever Device Tested in Utica Produces Electricity from Flaring

Alphabet Energy’s Power Generating Combustor – click for larger version

Open flaring of gas (and oil) wells is pretty much a thing of the past. As MDN told you all the way back in 2012, the federal Environmental Protection Agency unilaterally (in contravention of the U.S. Constitution) told the oil and gas industry that the EPA was instituting new regulations to require drillers to move to so-called green completions by last year (see Marcellus Drillers Drop Flaring, Adopt “Green Completions”). And so they have–for the most part. These days when a well is flared, the flaring process is enclosed to trap gases and chemicals that might otherwise be released into the air. All of those enclosed flares (flaring is nothing more than burning the initial flowback that comes from the well) produces a lot of heat. A couple of companies have teamed up to create an clever product that converts all of that heat from enclosed flares into electricity. What it means is that a driller, using this new device, doesn’t have to cart diesel or natgas-powered generators to the well pad, or connect local electric lines to the pad. Instead, this device produces all of the electricity they’ll need at the site (after the drilling is done). One of the places this new device is being tested is in the Utica Shale…

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