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Characteristics of LPG

What is LPG?

LPG stands for Liquefied Petroleum Gas. It is commonly used for cooking, lighting and central heating. It is a clean burning, non-poisonous, dependable and high performance fuel stored and transported in containers as a liquid, but is generally drawn out and used as gas.

What is the composition of LPG?

LPG occurs naturally in crude oil and natural gas production fields, and is also produced during the oil refining process. It is a mixture of light gaseous hydrocarbons (e.g. propane, butane) which are gaseous at normal ambient temperature and atmospheric pressure, but made liquid by application of moderate pressure.

At normal temperatures and pressures, LPG will evaporate, so it is supplied in pressurised steel cylinders. To allow for thermal expansion, these cylinders are typically filled to between 80% and 85% of their capacity.

What are the significant characteristics of LPG?

LPG has three significant characteristics:

  1. LPG allows efficient cooking.
    LPG is easily controllable so users can cook with their desired heat or flame intensity.
  2. LPG is heavier than air.
    When LPG leaks from its cylinder, LPG vapour will flow and accumulate at the ground level. Therefore, leaks are dangerous as LPG can burn when it comes in contact with any source of ignition. Always keep windows open and ventilate your kitchen well.
  3. LPG is odourless and colourless.
    To detect leakage, LPG is given its distinctive smell by adding a special stenching agent in concentrations that will ensure it can be detected even if the leakage is well below the level of flammability.

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