2024 KCP Application
Customers & Partnerships
Primary Project Category:
Secondary Project Category:
Carbon Sinks (Natural & Engineered)
Social & Cultural Pathways
Transport and Mobility
Project Summary / Description:
There are more than half a million estimated stranded natural gas wellpads utilizing pneumatic control devices to control gas and liquid flow and pressure. These devices emit more than 11 MMT estimated tons of methane a year through millions of these devices. The problem has been delivering utility grade electricity and sometimes heat in extreme weather conditions to run these wellpads, which are usually in harsh, remote environments. Solving methane venting has been cost and manpower prohibitive. Creating a free piston external combustion Stirling engine requiring no lubrication and no scheduled maintenance that utilizes raw natural gas to provide local heat and power solves both of these key stumbling blocks to netzero methane on the wellpad. Qnergy has innovated the engine to do this and power compressed air to take the place of methane as the controlling fluid at the wellpad, resulting in zero venting of methane from pneumatic operation.
Regions of Operations:
How Project Affects Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Emissions:
Replaces/avoids GHGs (e.g., projects that replace sources of GHGs, such as the burning of fossil fuels for electricity, heat, transport, or other energy uses)
Best Estimate of GHG Avoidance/Reduction of This Project (Tonnes CO2 Equivalent/Year):
Impact on Underrepresented Groups:
Qnergy has a DEIA plan we are pursuing. Ours is a unique mix of Ph.D.s with research backgrounds, engineers for design, assemblers, manufacturers, and field personnel, in addition to management. We have just hired our 2nd female field sales and technical support person, out of 85 FTEs in a STEM organization, we have 14 females, 6 in technical roles. Our recruiting for new talent as we seek to expand is to tap into historically underutilized minorities, e.g., Women in Manufacturing, Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers, National Society of Black Engineers, NOGLSTP and oSTEM. We are currently working with local universities to put in place this outreach program. Placement of our solutions often takes place near towns or residences that over time have expanded close to pipelines and wellpads. Eliminating up to 22 tons per year of methane release per pneumatic wellpad provides a degree of environmental justice for these communities.
Research or Economic Modeling
Measurement, Reporting & Validation
Qnergy is committed to solving the challenge of distributed methane. Methane is a useful fuel but also a GHG when emitted. Methane is generated everywhere there is life: an organic source and anaerobic degradation elements. Hence we find it underground, in landfills, on farms, in wastewater. Aggregation based models utilize economies of scale strategies. But this addresses typically just the largest 20% of anything. Life, and methane, are far more distributed and hence require distributed thinking and doing. Qnergy is dedicated to delivering and where needed, partnering, to innovate solutions for the millions of global small methane emitting sites by taking any unfiltered, unprocessed, methane source and converting it into useful utility grade electricity and heat wherever needed; the small farm, business, or facility. A distributed solution strategy unlocks faster and more complete adoption of NetZero methane, with potential for new business models, partnerships, and participation in value creation.