SEC Energy Products & Services is showing its support of OSU Institute of Technology’s Natural Gas Compression program with an equipment donation valued at more than $400,000.
The company donated a Dual Drive Technologies compressor package to the program earlier this fall, giving students a fifth compressor package to learn on, said instructor Brad Smith.
“SEC’s generous donation expands the range of learning opportunities we offer our students as each compressor package is different,” said Smith.
The Dual Drive compressor package is unique in that it has both an electric motor and natural gas engine and either can be used to drive the compressor. A custom designed clutch allows the operator to seamlessly switch between drivers without loss of load on the compressor.
Carol Conomos, president of SEC Energy Products & Services, said the development of the Dual Drive compressor package is one of the most significant technological advances in the compression industry in the last several decades. Dual Drive Technology compressors and energy management services are available through SEC’s sister company Dual Drive Technologies, and the compressors are packaged by SEC.
“SEC wanted to bring awareness to OSUIT students and others in the industry that this compression is available and operating in the marketplace (SEC has packaged over 300,000 hp of this type of compression package)” Conomos said. “Dual Drive Technology allows the user energy management options not available on traditional compressors through the use of either a natural gas engine or electric motor driver to optimize operating cost, and emission footprint”
Smith said having a new compressor means students can add another skill set to their resumes.
“It means we can give them experience on a Dual Drive. We can do that lab work in the shop instead of just go over it in the classroom,” he said. “I believe this will give our students a leg up when it comes time to look for a job as not many other programs provide exposure to this type of compressor.”
Donations of funds and equipment, like the compressor from SEC, are vital to the Natural Gas Compression program, Smith said.
“Everything you see in this building has been donated. We’re a state institution; we don’t exactly have a lot of money to spend on equipment. It’s super important for industry partners to donate,” he said.
Smith said the students were just as excited as the instructors to have the new compressor.
“You should have seen how many people were here when it was delivered,” Smith said. “It came in after hours but there were still a few students here. Before you know it we had 20 students here helping out and watching us unload it. By the second day they already were picking things out on the compressor they didn’t know and wanted me to tell them about.”
Conomos said SEC has long been aware of the Natural Gas Compression program at OSUIT through its participation in the Gas Compressor Association and Gas Processors Suppliers associations.
“We look forward to learning more about the program and hope to benefit in the future from hiring students from the school,” she said.