TETRA4 (Pty) Ltd , has reserved the rights to develop the Virginia Gas Field located near the town of Virginia, approximately 320 km south of Johannesburg in the Free State province of South Africa.
The exploration license covers 187,000 ha where gas emitting boreholes have been identified from mineral exploration activity in the Witwatersrand formation. The gas resource, known as “microbial gas”, was generated by primitive bacteria that inhibited deep water-bearing fissures.
Proven reserves of methane-rich natural gas also containing relatively high Helium concentrations will be extracted and sold as a separate commodity. The proven gas will serve as a clean substitute for transport fuel (compressed or liquefied), thermal fuel and power.
EPCM was contracted to execute the following in the development of the gas field:
- Bankable Feasibility Study
Compiled in 2014, this study aimed at defining CAPEX (Capital Expenditure) and OPEX (Operational Expenditure) values as well as the IRR (Interest Rate of Return) of the project. This study was used by Molopo to prove to possible investors of the possible returns of the gas gathering project.
- Construction of Production Well
Completed in the first quarter of 2016, this project included the engineering, procurement and construction of a gas processing facility. With a flow rate of roughly 230 Sm3/hr (2.8 kg/min), the gas is cleaned, dried and compressed to be dispensed as CNG (Compressed Natural Gas) into transporting trucks.
- Owner’s Engineers
EPCM was contracted to be Tetra4’s Owner’s Engineers in the reviewing process of the Helium Plant FEED that Linde executed.
- Project Feasibility Study
This study aimed at connecting various wellheads into a gas gathering network, to be routed towards the main processing plant. This study included the following “sub-studies”:
- Route Study;
- Compressor Selection Study;
- Dehydration Selection Study;
- Concept Study.
Furthermore, this study aimed at defining the most optimal route and concept to use in the gas gathering project.
- Gas Gathering FEED
The Front-End Engineering Design was completed on the two sections of the gas gathering network namely;
- Gas Gathering Section – This includes the wellheads, pipeline network, compression stations and the trunk line;
- Mother Station – This includes the main processing facility which will see LNG (Liquefied Natural Gas) and LHe (Liquid Helium) being produced from the feed gas.
EPCM will start to execute the engineering, procurement and construction side of the entire gas gathering project in the second quarter of 2018. This includes the following:
- Wellhead Installations;
- Underground HDPE pipeline network (50km of pipeline network);
- Compression and Dehydration Stations;
- Mother Station.