LPG Full Form
We have heard about LPG a lot. We use it and we have heard about many projects announced by the Government on providing LPG cylinders to the families below the poverty line. These people can’t afford even their basic needs. To provide them food, LPG projects are being announced by the government. Well, talking about the abbreviation, LPG stands for Liquefied Petroleum Gas. This gas is a combined mixture of hydrocarbon gases. These gases are flammable and are used as fuel in electronic/ heating appliances, vehicles, etc. Now, you must be wondering what are the gases included in this mixture? The gases included are propane (48%), butane (50%), and pentane (2%).
Earlier, people used chlorofluorocarbons which resulted in the depletion of the ozone layer. The layer was heavily damaged due to this. So, as a result, LPG was introduced and was used as a refrigerant. LPG is an unscented gas that is heavier than air. When the gas is used in a vehicle, it is referred to as auto-gas. Auto-gas is another name for Liquefied Petroleum Gas. There are several varieties of this gas. The mixture majorly includes propane and butane. Well, the mixtures depend upon the weather. Yes. The mixtures are related to the weather. In the Northern hemisphere, propane is mixed in a major form in winters while in summers the element majorly mixed is butane.
Well, this kind of LPG is sold in India. Talking in terms of other countries; the United States sells two kinds of LPG i.e. commercial propane and HD-5. The elements and mixture specifications are produced by ASTM (American Society of Testing and Materials) and GPA (Gas Processors Association). Propane and Butane along with other elements are also listed by ASTM and GPA.
Now, how is LPG extracted? Well, LPG is extracted from natural gases along with crude oil. With the help of natural gases and crude oil, processing and refining are done. Over 65% - 70% of the LPG is obtained from the earth. LPG is easy to store and transport as it is portable and convenient. LPG comes in a variety of sizes in liquid form. LPG is also in the vapor form depending upon the temperature and pressure.
Now, let us look at some of the uses of LPG.
- LPG is used in domestic and industrial areas. For domestic purposes, LPG is required for cooking. LPG cylinders are used for cooking. The gas is in liquid form. This fuel burns completely, thereby, leaving a negligible amount of residue.
- LPG geysers are another form in which LPG gas is in liquid form. These geysers are used for producing hot water.
- LPG is also used in electricity generation. For instance, gas turbines, generators, etc. use LPG gas in liquid form.
- Motor Boats and other recreational vehicles also use LPG gases.
There are many areas in which LPG gas is used. Apart from the above-mentioned uses, there are many other uses of the gas. It is interesting to note that LPG can be converted into gasoline. It transforms itself because of its properties and burning. LPG is used as a clean-burning tool and it doesn’t leave any material after burning.
Now, let us talk about the global production of LPG. According to the reports, in the year 2015, the LPG production was 292 million tons. Apart from the 62% LPG extracted from natural gas, the other 38% is used in petrochemical industries and refineries. Well, as it is mentioned above that LPG is used for domestic and industrial purposes. So, over 45% of the LPG usage is seen in the domestic sector. In India, the figure may vary because of the various LPG schemes undertaken by the government.
There is one more interesting fact to know. LPG has several positive and negative environmental effects. LPG releases carbon dioxide which is a greenhouse gas. But the ratio of carbon dioxide is different with propane and butane. LPG releases less amount of carbon dioxide in butane as compared to propane. One positive effect of carbon dioxide is that it burns cleanly because of its hydrocarbons present in the molecules.
LPG has many positive effects, and related risks as well. But LPG is important because it is used for various purposes. The Government of India has announced several schemes for the families under BPL and the LPG scheme is one of them. LPG is in liquid and vapor form that makes it heavier than air. Thus, LPG is a flammable gas that is used after the refining process.