LNG – liquefied natural gas

Liquefied natural gas (LNG) is produced by cooling gas to -161°C, so it can then be stored in an almost depressurised state. The process reduces the volume of the gas – under normal conditions, one cubic metre of LNG represents 600 cubic metres of natural gas. For this reason, LNG is primarily used for transportation of large volumes of energy or as a fuel for heavy goods vehicles.

Energy supplies for the future

Securing energy supplies for the future that can provide energy sustainably and affordably, while also reducing greenhouse gas emissions and improving energy efficiency, represents one of the biggest challenges facing the world today. This important goal of the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris will only be achieved by huge collaborative efforts. For years, RAG has been working on innovative solutions that take account of changes in energy policies and the situation in the energy industry. RAG has been producing natural gas in Austria for decades. And for a number of years now, RAG has been using its expertise to carry out research into power to gas technology. This will make it possible to convert excess renewable wind and solar energy into gas, which can be stored in natural underground gas reservoirs. We firmly believe that gas can make an important contribution to meeting climate protection targets, because of its flexibility and range of uses – for heating and transportation, and in industry. As a result, RAG is investing in pioneering LNG infrastructure, driving forward this environmentally friendly development. Commissioning of our first LNG filling station, at Ennshafen port in September 2017, is the first milestone in this process.

LNG – the fuel of the future

Transportation plays an essential role in a functioning economy. All medium and long term forecasts predict growth in the volume of road traffic, especially heavy goods traffic.

Global, European and national climate protection targets aim at a reduction in emissions produced by vehicles. The use of gas as a fuel can make a major contribution to achieving these targets, since vehicle traffic contributes about 45% of emissions. Numerous EU initiatives are promoting the increased use of natural gas and LNG. In the future, gas produced from renewable sources (biogas and gas generated from wind and solar, using power to gas) might also be used in addition to conventional natural gas. So ready supplies of gas will be available for use as a fuel for the long term.

LNG is already produced in a testing plant in Puchkirchen (Upper Austria) .

What is LNG?

Liquefied natural gas (LNG) is natural gas that has been converted to a fluid state by cooling it to a temperature of around -160°C. The expansion ratio of natural gas from liquid to gaseous form is 1:600, meaning that large volumes of energy can be transported and stored as LNG. It can be produced in Austria or transported to customers in specially designed road and sea tankers. As well as being easy to transport and store, LNG offers another significant benefit: it is very economical and efficient. As highly pure natural gas that consists of almost 100% methane, it has an average gross calorific value of 11.3 kWh per cubic meter of gas.

Advantages of trucks that run on LNG

  • Carbon dioxide emissions up to 20,000kg lower per year in comparison with Euro 6 diesel trucks
  • 95% reduction in fine particulates
  • Over 70% reduction in nitrogen oxides (NO, NO2)
  • No AdBlue/catalytic convertor needed
  • LNG technically mature for use in industry and heavy goods vehicles, and available for the long term
  • Using LNG as a fuel reduces noise emissions by about 50%
  • Infrastructure is under implementation along the LNG Blue Corridors – principle routes for LNG heavy goods vehicles in Europe
  • EU initiatives such as Horizon 2020


LNG is safe throughout the entire supply chain. Years of experience from industrial application shows that LNG does not present any greater risk than conventional fuels, which are transported every day – provided gas standards are complied with. LNG transportation fuel systems meet the same high safety standards as conventional systems. The design of LNG tanks differs fundamentally from that of tanks for conventional transportation fuel. LNG tanks are optimally protected against mechanical and thermal influences thanks to
their compressive strength and tank-in-tank systems with integrated insulation.