Chapter 4
Gas Management System


This chapter discusses the functionality and implementation related issues of a computer based gas management system whose intended use is for managing daily transportation services. The primary focus of this chapter is on gas nomination and volume accounting functions. Also described are related applications such as gas inventory monitoring, gas storage injection∕withdrawal and gas load forecasting.

The purpose of a computer based gas management system is to automate the provision of gas transportation with the goal of improving the efficiency and profitability of the service. The gas management system begins with the initial gas contract and carries through to the final invoicing and account settlement. It allows the system users to access the required information quickly and to provide the shippers with accurate information (1). The users may include not only the pipeline company staff and management but also shippers such as producing companies, other transmission companies, distribution companies, and gas marketing companies. A computer based gas management system can help the operator make the most efficient use of the pipeline capacity and facilities and keep more accurate track of the transportation process than a traditional manual system, thus increasing profits.

Historically, pipeline companies in North America provided total gas service including gas supply and transportation. In 1992, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) in the U.S.A issued Order 636, which transformed American gas transmission companies from gas merchants into transporters. In other words, the order required the unbundling of these two business activities. Pipeline companies had to provide gas producers and shippers with equal and open access to transportation services and eliminate the discriminatory contracts that limited access to small volume suppliers. The ultimate objective of the FERC's Order 636 was to provide consumers with access to an adequate and reliable supply of natural gas at a reasonable price. As a means of achieving this objective, the order mandates that transmission pipeline companies open their transmission services to all shippers regardless of the ownership of the gas or its quantity. It was reported (2) that the unbundled service requirement allowed a gas transmission company to set up hourly customer nominations and determine daily balancing and billing, while achieving 99.5% daily billing accuracy.

  • 4.1 Introduction
  • 4.2 Transportation Service
  • 4.3 Nomination Management System
  • 4.4 Volume Accounting System
  • 4.5 Gas Control Applications

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