The paper briefly reviews the technology, gas turbine versus high speed electric drive, which represents two very different solutions for natural gas pipeline or storage compressor drive applications. The technical and economic merits of the competing drive systems have to be considered for each individual project. Traditionally, gas turbines have been the prime drivers for compressor trains, especially in Europe whereas in North America gas engine driven reciprocating compressors are also very common. With the liberalization of the electric power market and tighter environmental restrictions regarding local emissions, high frequency electric motor drivers became a competitive alternative profiting by decreased costs for the electricity infrastructure and the power supply, thus lowering the investment and operational costs. Gas turbines in compliance with the latest emission regulations will maintain their predominant role in natural gas pipeline and storage applications, especially in non-residential and remote areas.

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