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Integrated Fibre Optic Sensor Based Monitoring System for LNG Terminals

Technology Overview

Liquefied natural gas (LNG) is an important fuel source for Singapore, and the safe operation of the Singapore LNG Terminal will contribute to a secure energy supply for Singapore. However, the cryogenic environment of LNG presents challenges for safety monitoring and consequence analysis of potential incidents at the LNG terminal, including LNG rollover, tank and gas pipeline leakages. This project will develop a real-time monitoring system using Fibre Bragg Grating (FBG) cryogenic sensors for the safe monitoring and incident consequence analysis of LNG terminals. The incident consequence analysis will estimate the likelihood of potential hazards and their consequences, leading to safer operation of LNG terminals

Fibre Bragg grating (FBG) is a promising technique for multi-point temperature sensing inside the LNG tank. Generally, the performance of FBG sensors at cryogenic temperature greatly depends on the coating materials of FBG sensors and the encapsulation structure of the sensor. Appropriate type of coating material will increase the temperature sensitivity and reliability of the sensor. Conversely, inappropriate protective coating may induce FBG’s spectral chirped phenomenon, hence, rendering FBG sensors inaccurate when being utilized under low temperature environment. The technology provider has developed a FBG coating method to enable temperature sensing at temperature ranging from -200℃ to 100℃ and is seeking for industry partners for technology commercialisation opportunities.  

Technology Features & Specifications

The developed FBG sensors utilise host materials with higher coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE) to enable thermal expansion of the sensors at high temperature and bring extra wavelength shift which is more durable, easier for networking and intrinsically-safe. Other technical specification of the developed FBG sensors include: 

  1. Non-electric measurement
  2. Suitable for Inflammable(Liquefied natural gas)
  3. Measurement range: -200℃-100℃
  4. Accuracy: ±0.35℃

Potential Applications

As LNG is becoming an important energy source and many countries in Asia region have built or planning to build LNG terminals, the technology addresses current challenges in the areas of safety monitoring of LNG terminal operations. This technology aims to provide an effective LNG monitoring system which guarantees safe operation of LNG terminals. It can also apply to measure a wide range of cryogenic liquid operating at temperature from -200℃ to 100℃.

Customer Benefits

The technology developed will allow temperature monitoring of LNG vessels and address current challenges in the areas of LNG safety monitoring system. 

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