THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - 18

feature

Winning Insight
into Gas Losses

I

By Anthony Cadorin, Antony Davison, and Giao Tran; City of Mesa Energy Resources
n simple terms, lost and unaccounted for (LAUF)
gas is the difference between the amount of gas
purchased and the quantity of gas sold. [1] As
simple as that definition sounds, it turns out that
determining LAUF gas is a very complex issue
affecting all aspects of gas pipeline operations.

Pipeline operators have been
tracking and reporting LAUF since the
adoption of the Energy Information
Administration (EIA) form 176 in 1980
and through its various revisions
and that data is available on EIA's
website all the way back to 1990. As
a whole, U.S. operators reported a
loss of 1.9 percent according to the
EIA Natural Gas Annual 2014. [2] Since
2013, Mesa, Ariz., has been attempting
to identify the sources that are the
most significant contributors to LAUF
gas and attempting to quantify the
contributions of each of those sources.
Since Mesa's distribution system is
located in the hot Arizona climate and
Mesa's current metering practices
do not incorporate temperature
compensation, it was decided to
initially focus on quantifying the
contribution to LAUF gas from metered
gas temperature.
Mesa's plan aimed to collect gas
temperature and consumption data
from end-use customers and study
the temperature's effect on LAUF
gas. To date, Mesa has collected just
over three consecutive years' worth
of data. The data was analyzed to

quantify the effect of gas temperature
compensation or lack thereof on enduser measurement specific to Mesa's
system. When the analysis from the
individual customers was applied to
the system-wide consumption, it was
determined that gas temperature
correction currently accounts for
approximately two percent of Mesa's
LAUF gas annually.
Methods
Sample Selection
In order to produce an accurate
representation of the temperature of the
gas metered at each individual customer
in Mesa's system, a two-step selection
process was used. Mesa's gas customer
base as of November 2014 consists of
90 percent small residential users, one
percent small commercial users, and the
remaining nine percent are a mixture
of large residential, commercial and
governmental users. It was decided
that data would be gathered from
four small residential customers with a
delivery pressure of 0.25 Psig-Mesa's
most common rate class and delivery
pressure-and one small commercial
customer with a delivery pressure of

18 THE SOURCE | THE VOICE AND CHOICE OF PUBLIC GAS

two psig-Mesa's second most common
delivery pressure. Sample meters would
then be selected in different geographic
locations throughout the system based
on targeting specific annual customer
consumption patterns.
By pure coincidence, one of the
meters selected for a residential sample
location happened to serve a residential
compressed natural gas (CNG) unit.
Since Mesa has a significant commercial
CNG customer presence and actively
promotes its use as an alternative
fuel for customers, this meter was
retained in the data set and used as a
representation of Mesa's CNG customer
class in the analysis.
Equipment Selection
The Roots IMC-W2 volume corrector,
manufactured by Dresser was selected
to log data for the study. These are the
same volume correctors typically used
on large industrial and commercial
rotary meters that operate with
elevated delivery pressures. The original
diaphragm meter index was retained
and mounted on top of a pulsing meter
index so that meter readers could
continue taking the conventional,



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of THE SOURCE - Summer 2017

First Person
APGA Events
Q&A: Representative Walden
A Conversation with an APGA Member
Look Out Your Window
Winning Insight into Gas Losses
Electrify, Electrify
Furnace Rule Update
Legislative Outlook
The Pipeline
Marketing Matters
At Last
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - bellyband1
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - bellyband2
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - cover1
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - cover2
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - 3
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - 4
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - 5
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - 6
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - 7
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - 8
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - First Person
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - APGA Events
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - 11
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - Q&A: Representative Walden
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - A Conversation with an APGA Member
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - 14
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - 15
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - Look Out Your Window
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - 17
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - Winning Insight into Gas Losses
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - 19
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - Electrify, Electrify
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - 21
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - Furnace Rule Update
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - Legislative Outlook
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - 24
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - 25
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - The Pipeline
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - Marketing Matters
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - 28
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - At Last
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - 30
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - cover3
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - cover4
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - outsert1
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - outsert2
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - outsert3
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - outsert4
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - outsert5
THE SOURCE - Summer 2017 - outsert6
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