Natural Gas Availability
The interstate natural gas pipeline network transports processed natural gas from processing plants in producing regions to those areas with high natural gas requirements, particularly large, populated urban areas. As can be seen, the pipeline network extends across the entire country.
Interstate pipelines are the ‘highways’ of natural gas transmission. Natural gas that is transported through interstate pipelines travels at high pressure in the pipeline, at pressures anywhere from 200 to 1500 pounds per square inch (psi). This reduces the volume of the natural gas being transported by up to 600 times.
Gas is highly pressurized as it travels through an interstate pipeline. To ensure that the natural gas flowing through any one pipeline remains pressurized, compression of this natural gas is required periodically along the pipe. This is accomplished by compressor stations, usually placed at 40 to 100 mile intervals along the pipeline. The natural gas enters the compressor station, where it is compressed.