• Regency plays a critical role in the midstream value chain by providing gathering and processing, contract compression, contract treating and transportation of natural gas, and transportation, storage and fractionation of natural gas liquids (NGLs) for producers.

  • The gathering system consists of a network of low-pressure, low-diameter pipelines that transport raw natural gas from the wellhead to a processing plant located near the production, where it is treated, dehydrated, and/or processed. In the dehydration process, water is removed from the gas.

  • Natural gas compression is a mechanical process in which gas at a lower pressure is boosted, or compressed, to a desired higher pressure, allowing it to flow into higher pressure downstream pipelines. Field compression is typically used to lower the gas pressure at entry into the gathering system, while maintaining or increasing the exit pressure, providing sufficient pressure to deliver gas into higer pressure downstream pipelines.

  • Treating entails the removal of impurities, such as water, sulfur compounds, carbon dioxide and nitrogen from natural gas. The treating process involves a continuous circulation of a liquid chemical called amine that physically contacts with the natural gas and absorbs impurities. After mixing, gas and amine are separated, and the impurities are removed from the amine by heating.

  • Transmission lines are comprised of intrastate and interstate pipeline systems and pipeline facilities. Natural gas is transported to end users, including electric power generation facilities and large industrial plants, while natural gas liquids are transported to NGL fractionation facilities.

  • NGL fractionation facilities separate natural gas liquids into marketable NGL products that can then be stored for later use or sold at market to petrochemical and refining companies.

Natural gas has emerged as an essential part of our nation’s energy industry, providing a viable, clean alternative to oil and coal. Recent discoveries of abundant reserves across the U.S. have driven the need for greater exploration, infrastructure and delivery of natural gas to consumers. With this rapid growth, companies have found new opportunities and jobs have been created.

The midstream natural gas industry is the link between exploration and production of raw natural gas and the delivery of its components to end-user markets. It consists of natural gas gathering, compression, dehydration, processing, amine treating, fractionation and transportation. Pipeline-quality natural gas and mixed natural gas liquid (NGL) components are then sold to end users.

Natural Gas Gathering

A gathering system typically consists of a network of low-pressure, small-diameter pipelines that collect natural gas from the wellhead and transport it to processing or treating plants for processing, treating, and/or dehydration, for redelivery to larger diameter pipelines for further transportation to end-user markets.

Processing

Natural gas processing is the separation of natural gas into pipeline quality natural gas and a mixed NGL stream through either an absorption, mechanical or cryogenic process. The heavier components which make up the NGL stream are typically ethane, propane, isobutane, normal butane and natural gasoline.

Transportation

Natural gas transportation consists of moving pipeline-quality natural gas from gathering systems, processing or treating plants and other pipelines and delivering it to wholesalers, end users, local distribution companies and other pipelines. Mixed natural gas liquids (NGLs) are typically transported via NGL pipelines or by truck to fractionators, which separate the NGLs into their components.

Compression

Natural gas compression is a mechanical process in which gas at a lower pressure is boosted, or compressed, to a desired higher pressure, allowing the gas to flow into a higher-pressure, downstream pipeline where it will be transported to end-user markets. Field compression is typically used to lower the gas pressure at entry into the gathering system while maintaining or increasing the exit pressure, providing sufficient pressure to deliver gas into a higher-pressure, downstream pipeline.

Amine Treating

Natural gas treating entails the removal of impurities such as water, sulfur compounds, carbon dioxide and nitrogen. The amine treating process involves a continuous circulation of a liquid chemical called amine that physically contacts with the natural gas. The gas and amine are separated and the impurities are removed from the amine by heating. The treating plants are sized according to the amine circulation rate in terms of gallons per minute (GPM).

Dehydration

Dehydration is the process during which water is removed from the gas; also called Glycol Absorption

Fractionation

Natural gas liquid (NGL) fractionation facilities separate mixed NGL streams into saleable or purity NGL products including ethane, propane, normal butane, isobutane and natural gasoline.

Storage

A place to store natural gas supplies for use at a later time. Storage can be an old gas field, a developed salt dome or a liquefied natural gas tank.

 

Industry Overview

The midstream natural gas industry is the link between exploration and production of raw natural gas and the delivery of its components to end-user markets.

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Pipeline FAQ's

Learn the answers to commonly asked questions about the natural gas industry.

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Contract Services

Regency Energy Partners contract services business specializes in natural gas contract compression and contact treating services.

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