The cost of fuel is one of the most important factors affecting power plant profitability, but flexibility and efficiency are also vitally important to success. One impressive new plant in Ohio—the Lordstown Energy Center—is positioned to profit from inexpensive gas while utilizing proven technology to economically produce reliable power. The project is a notable POWER Top Plant award winner.
The power industry has changed dramatically over the past decade. One of the driving forces behind the transformation has been the growth of shale gas production. Shale gas is natural gas—primarily methane—found in shale formations, some of which were formed during the Devonian and Ordovician periods of Earth’s history.
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, the shales were deposited as fine silt and clay particles at the bottom of relatively enclosed bodies of water more than 300 million years ago. At roughly the same time, primitive plants were forming forests on land and the first amphibians were beginning to appear. Some of the methane that formed from the organic matter buried with the sediments escaped into sandy rock layers adjacent to the shales, forming conventional accumulations of natural gas, which are relatively easy to extract. But some of it remained locked in the tight, low-permeability shale layers, becoming shale gas.Read more by clicking here.