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ISO 6976

3rd Edition, August 15, 2016

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Natural gas - Calculation of calorific values, density, relative density and Wobbe indices from composition

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Description / Abstract:

This document specifies methods for the calculation of gross calorific value, net calorific value, density, relative density, gross Wobbe index and net Wobbe index of natural gases, natural gas substitutes and other combustible gaseous fuels, when the composition of the gas by mole fraction is known. The methods specified provide the means of calculating the properties of the gas mixture at commonly used reference conditions.

Mole fractions by definition sum to unity. Guidance on the achievement of this requirement by chromatographic analysis is available in ISO 6974-1 and ISO 6974-2.

The methods of calculation require values for various physical properties of the pure components; these values, together with associated uncertainties, are provided in tables and their sources are identified. Methods are given for estimating the standard uncertainties of calculated properties.

The methods of calculation of the values of properties on either a molar, mass or volume basis are applicable to any natural gas, natural gas substitute or other combustible fuel that is normally gaseous, except that for properties on the volume basis the method is restricted to mixtures for which the compression factor at reference conditions is greater than 0,9.

Example calculations are given in Annex D for the recommended methods of calculation.

NOTE 1 The qualifiers “superior”, “higher”, “upper” and “total” are, for the purposes of this document, synonymous with “gross”; likewise, “inferior” and “lower” are synonymous with “net”. The term “heating value” is synonymous with “calorific value”; “mass density” and “specific density” are synonymous with “density”; “specific gravity” is synonymous with “relative density”; “Wobbe number” is synonymous with “Wobbe index”; “compressibility factor” is synonymous with “compression factor”. The dimensionless quantity molecular weight is numerically equal to the molar mass in kg·kmol−1.

NOTE 2 There are no explicit limits of composition to which the methods described in this document are applicable. However, the restriction of volume-basis calculations to mixtures with a compression factor greater than 0,9 at reference conditions sets implicit limits on composition.

NOTE 3 Because the mole fraction of any water present is not normally available from chromatographic analysis, it is common practice to calculate the physical properties on a dry gas basis and to allow for the effects of water vapour in a separate procedure. However, if the mole fraction of water vapour is known then the property calculations can be carried out completely in accordance with the procedures described herein. The effects of water vapour on calorific value, whether the latter is directly measured or calculated, are discussed in ISO/TR 29922.

NOTE 4 For aliphatic hydrocarbons of carbon number 7 or above, any isomer present is included with the normal isomer of the same carbon number.

NOTE 5 If the user’s requirement includes the replacement of, for example, a C6+ or C7+ grouping of analytically unresolved components by a single pseudo-component, then it is the user’s own task to set the mole fraction composition, and hence properties, of this pseudo-component so as to be fit for purpose in the particular application. Any so-called “spectator water” and “non-combustible hydrogen sulfide” are treated as pseudocomponents by setting the appropriate enthalpy of combustion values to zero.
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