nedjelja, 10. lipnja 2018.

Europe 2020 indicators - Croatia

The energy sector in Croatia

Croatia has around 4.28 million inhabitants and rich potential for renewable energy and energy efficiency. In 2016 the country produced 57.3 percent of its total primary energy supply, including around 20 percent of the oil it consumes, and around two thirds of natural gas. Unlike most of its Western Balkan neighbours it no longer has its own coal reserves.
Croatia produces only about half of its own electricity, depending on hydrological conditions. Most of the electricity generation capacity is owned by Hrvatska Elektroprivreda, the state-owned electricity group. In 2015, 57% of domestically generated electricity came from hydropower, 20% from coal, 12.4% from oil/gas, 7% from wind, 2.3% from biomass and 0.5% from solar. In other words, non-hydropower renewables accounted for just under 10% of generation. Krsko nuclear power plant in Slovenia, of which HEP owns 50 percent, also contributes to Croatia’s electricity supply but is counted under imports in the statistics.
Electricity generation in Croatia, 2015, GWh
Although Croatia has made some progress in using its wind and solar PV potential in recent years, this there is still much more potential that has not been exploited. Solar thermal is also underused compared to the obvious potential in this very sunny country.
SourceSolar PVWind
IRENA
Cost-competitive potential
3173 MW
4309 GWh
14384 MW
28317 GWh
SEERMAP
Decarbonisation scenario (2050 minus 2016)
1839 MW
1837 GWh
3857 MW
7215 GWh
SEE-SEP
The EU Road scenario
6950 MW
11830 GWh
3200 MW
8450 GWh
Renewables and energy efficiency development has been held back by a lack of political will resulting in small quotas for support for wind and especially solar. Croatia has not developed a new energy strategy since the over-ambitious and outdated 2009 one, so there has been no systematic debate about the country’s energy direction in recent years. In line with EU state aid rules, Croatia has now switched to auctioning and feed-in premiums rather than feed-in tariffs, but as of May 2018 had not approved the supporting legislation that would enable the system to function, this braking further development until this is resolved.
Much time and resources have also been lost on pushing outdated projects such as the 500 MW Plomin C coal power plant, to be run on imported coal, the 450 MW Peruća gas power plant, and large-scale hydropower projects in sensitive locations such as Ombla and Kosinj. The first three of these projects have now been cancelled after civil society campaigns highlighted their weaknesses. However a floating LNG terminal on the island of Krk is still planned, with support from the EU.
Croatia still has plenty of potential for energy efficiency improvements. Its energy intensity of total primary energy supply was 21.9 percent above the EU average in 2016. There is still plenty of work to be done to improve efficiency in the residential sector.

Sources:
  1. Energy Community Implementation Report 2017 
  2. BIH State Regulatory Commission for Electrical Energy – 2016 annual report 
  3. IEA energy statistics
  4. EIHP: Energy in Croatia 2016 

BONUS

The winners of the EU Sustainable Energy Awards 2018 were announced at an Awards Ceremony with the European Commissioner for Climate Action and Energy, Miguel Arias Cañete, in Brussels.


12 projects across 4 categories made it onto the Awards shortlist this year.

CONSUMERS: Bio.Energy.Parc

In 2008, the 7,200 inhabitants of Saerbeck decided to become self-sufficient in renewable energy by 2030 implementing over 150 actions based on an approach to link people and profits and transforming an old army munitions site into a sustainable energy park.
“We are proud to have received this award. It’s a big ‘yes’ to continue our way. We have been working on this project for the past 10 years and we are not at the end yet. This prize gives us the motivation to continue,” on behalf of Bio.Energy.Parc.Saerbeck Guido Wallraven said.

PUBLIC SECTOR: PEACE Alps

Project supports Alpine authorities in making the transition to a low-carbon area. Involving more than 200 municipalities across 6 countries, PEACE_Alps focuses on energy management, building renovation and public lighting. It also helps authorities overcome barriers in implementing their strategic action plans.
“Have a good project that is a good idea, with a good team behind it. We have been lucky at PEACE_Alps with such a team. It’s about the spirit of the people and believing in the change and transition,” Silvio De Nigris accepting the award on behalf of PEACE_Alps said.

BUSINESSES: WiseGRID

Funded by the EU’s Horizon 2020 programme, WiseGRID has developed a set of 9 solutions to improve the electricity grid and empower customers, by making the grid smarter, open and more consumer orientated.
“It’s very exciting. We are very happy about both our awards – from the jury and especially the citizens’ Award – this means that it’s not just the technology which is ready to help the energy transition but society is also willing to embrace the energy transition,” said Antonio Marques accepting the award for WiseGRID.

YOUNG ENERGY LEADERS: Czech Sustainable Houses

What began as an online hub providing information on sustainability, developed into an annual architectural competition inspiring young architects to lead the way in energy transition with their innovative, energy-saving designs.
“This award is for all the people that worked on Czech Sustainable Houses project. We started this project four years ago and we’ve created the largest student architecture competition. We also created a new system for energy management and households. We’re just a little grassroots organisation, but we’re dynamic,” explained Pavel Podruh, Czech Sustainable Houses project on hearing that his project won.

Croatian Center of Renewable Energy Sources (CCRES)

srijeda, 23. svibnja 2018.

Advanced Manufacturing Office (AMO)


AMO Supports $2 Million for 12 Small Business Research and Development Projects

AMO (Advanced Manufacturing Office) supports R&D projects, R&D consortia, and early-stage technical partnerships with national laboratories, companies (for-profit and not-for profit), state and local governments, and universities through competitive, merit reviewed funding opportunities designed to investigate new manufacturing technologies.

Recently, Secretary of Energy Rick Perry announced $34 million to support small businesses in advancing scientific discoveries and develop and commercialize manufacturing solutions. The Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy’s (EERE’s) Advanced Manufacturing Office (AMO) will provide funding support to twelve new projects across eleven states, totaling nearly $2 million in funding.
U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) offices award Phase I grants to small businesses that demonstrate technical feasibility for innovations during the first phase of their research. Most Phase I awards are for $150,000 for less than one year.
AMO projects were selected from two of 32 collaborative topics among multiple programs in DOE’s Office of Science. Eleven projects were selected under the Advanced Manufacturing topic, which included four subtopics:
  • Intelligent Systems for Materials Design and Discovery
  • Novel Energy-Efficient Dewatering Methods for Cellulosic Nanomaterials
  • Thermal Process Intensification for Productivity Improvements
  • Technology Transfer Opportunity: Process for the Synthesis of Precision Nanoparticles
The projects listed below will receive $150,000 under this topic award.
3D Array Technology LLC – Storrs, Connecticut
This Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase I project will result in a low-cost and high-efficiency microwave-irradiation intensified scalable manufacturing of nano-structured functional devices for environmental and energy applications. The obtained strategy will enable the industrial-relevant practical application of the novel nano-array based catalysts for automotive emission.

AccuStrata Inc – Rockville, Maryland
Catalysts are imperative to the efficiency and economy of the United States by making energy production, manufacturing and transportation more efficient and ecofriendly. This project seeks to provide a technology that will rapidly improve catalysts and keep the United States on the forefront of technological innovation.

BienaTech – Akron, Ohio
Discovery of high-efficiency catalysis frameworks vital to national advanced manufacturing goals is a challenging materials science problem. Using big data and machine learning approaches, the discovery of nanocatalysts will be accelerated.

Boston Electrometallurgical Corporation – Woburn, Massachusetts
Vanadium is a critical constituent of the high-strength steels that make cars lighter, safer, and more efficient. Boston Electromet will apply new manufacturing technology to supply the American steel industry with vanadium alloys of higher quality at a lower cost, all while saving energy in producing these alloys.

Christian Schafmeister - Merion Station, Pennsylvania
Computers are underutilized to design materials and molecules. Christian Schafmeister will develop software and “Molecular Lego” for designing materials and large molecules that purify other molecules, act as new medicines, sense other molecules, and assemble other molecules.

Compact Membrane Systems, Inc – Newport, Delaware
The proposed technology will significantly reduce capital and energy costs for converting shale gas based ethane into value added ethylene.

Faraday Technology – Englewood, Ohio
In order to enable cellulosic nanomaterials as a competitive renewable feedstock, technology must be developed to collect them from their growth medium at minimum cost. Solids processing technologies will be evaluated for effectiveness when used together for harvesting of cellulosic nanomaterials.

Physical Optics Corporation – Torrance, California
Nanocellulose is a natural and renewable polymer (paper), which has been used from ancient times but is currently finding modern applications in composite materials. The proposed technology allows dewatering the nanosized cellulose without compromising its nanoscaling.

Sep-All LLC – Ames, Iowa
Sep-All unique technology is a platform based on chemo-mechanical stresses and interface metastability at the microscale to drive a controlled separation of mixed sources into high-value micro- and nano-materials of purified compounds (e.g. oxides, acetates), without the need to operate at high temperatures.

TDA Research, Inc. – Wheat Ridge, Colorado
Cellulosic nanomaterials are a new bio-based material that requires an energy-intensive, multi-step process to manufacture. TDA Research proposes a new dewatering system will reduce energy consumption and production costs of these new bio-materials that can be used in a wide range of new products in packaging, consumer electronics and pharmaceuticals.

Voxtel, Inc – Beaverton, Oregon
Technology Transfer Opportunity with Idaho National Lab‐developed nanoparticle‐synthesis methods that will be used to advance the performance of microwave radome systems for antenna improvement in the communication space.

AMO will also fund one project under the Atomically Precise Manufacturing II topic that included a subtopic on Molecular Machine Advances. The project below will receive $225,000 under this topic award.
Covalent, Inc. - Las Vegas, Nevada
Novel, atomically-precise nanomaterials and nanomembranes made by mimicking nature’s construction techniques are being developed to provide ultra-low energy, low cost, high purity water from sources as diverse as seawater, wastewater, and water contaminated from nature, agriculture, industry and other sources.

For a full list of EERE-funded projects, view the EERE SBIR-STTR Project Spreadsheet. EERE-specific SBIR information is available on the EERE website.
Small businesses play a major role in spurring innovation and creating jobs in the U.S. economy. Congress created the SBIR and STTR programs to leverage small businesses to advance innovation at federal agencies.  DOE developed Technology Transfer Opportunity subtopics as a way for small businesses to partner with national laboratories on research and development needed to speed commercialization of national laboratory inventions.
EERE's Advanced Manufacturing Office (AMO) supports early-stage research to advance innovation in U.S. manufacturing and promote American economic growth and energy security.

Overview
Advanced Manufacturing Offce
The Advanced Manufacturing Offce is the only technology development offce within the U.S. Government that is dedicated to improving the energy and material effciency, productivity, and competitiveness of manufacturers across the industrial sector.


AMO brings together manufacturers, not-for-proft entities, research organizations, and institutions of higher education to identify challenges; catalyze innovations; and develop cutting-edge material, process, and information technologies needed for an effcient and competitive domestic manufacturing sector. By targeting effcient manufacturing technologies, AMO seeks to drive energy productivity improvements in the U.S. manufacturing sector, effciently utilize abundant and available domestic energy resources, and support the manufacture of clean energy products with benefts extending across the economy.
VISION: U.S. global leadership in sustainable and effcient manufacturing for a growing and competitive economy.
MISSION: Catalyze research, development and adoption of energy-related advanced manufacturing technologies and practices to drive U.S. economic competitiveness and energy productivity.

AMO Strategic Goals
• Improve the productivity and energy effciency of U.S. manufacturing
• Reduce lifecycle energy and resource impacts of manufactured goods
• Leverage diverse domestic energy resources in U.S. manufacturing, while strengthening environmental stewardship
• Transition DOE supported innovative technologies and practices into U.S. manufacturing capabilities
• Strengthen and advance the U.S. manufacturing workforce

Offce Structure
Organizationally, AMO pursues its goals through the following three subprogram approaches:
R&D PROJECTS: Bridging the innovation gap
The Advanced Manufacturing R&D Projects subprogram supports innovative advanced manufacturing applied R&D projects that focus on specifc high- impact manufacturing technology and process challenges. The subprogram invests in foundational energy-related advanced manufacturing technologies that impact areas relevant to manufacturing processes and broadly applicable platform technologies.
R&D CONSORTIA: Public-Private consortia model
The Advanced Manufacturing R&D Consortia subprogram helps the United States position itself as a world leader in strategic areas of manufacturing by bringing together manufacturers, suppliers, companies, institutions of higher education, national laboratories, and state and local governments in public- private R&D consortia. These partnerships create an innovation ecosystem that accelerates technology development and facilitates the transition of innovative advanced manufacturing technologies to industry.
TECHNICAL PARTNERSHIPS: Direct engagement with Industry
The Technical Partnerships subprogram provides critical support to the adop- tion of advanced energy effciency technologies and practices. The subprogram supports the adoption of cost-effective combined heat and power (CHP) technologies; provides resources to assist manufacturers in reducing their energy use intensity; promotes the adoption of energy management programs, provides targeted energy effciency, productivity, and waste/water use reduction practices to small- and medium-sized manufacturers.

Leadership
Dr. Rob Ivester, Director Robert.Ivester@ee.doe.gov
Valri Lightner, Acting Deputy Director Valri.Lightner@ee.doe.gov
Isaac Chan, Program Manager R&D Projects Isaac.Chan@ee.doe.gov
Mike Mckittrick, Program Lead R&D Consortia Michael.Mckittrick@ee.doe.gov
Jay Wrobel, Program Manager Technical Partnerships Jay.Wrobel@ee.doe.gov
U.S. Department of Energy – Advanced Manufacturing Offce Room 5F-065, MS EE-5A 1000 Independence Ave, SW Washington, DC 20585 Phone: (202) 586-9488
A variety of funding opportunities are available to manufacturers from the Advanced Manufacturing Office (AMO) and other organizations.
Zeljko Serdar, Croatian Center of Renewable Energy Sources (CCRES)

petak, 4. svibnja 2018.

The manufacturing industry meets automation – trends of 2018

The manufacturing industry meets automation – trends of 2018

The idea of automation is not new to manufacturing, but the advancements in terms of technology to make a difference. Automation has plenty of features that win the battle against the skills of human employees. The concept is already widespread in the manufacturing industry because most companies spend tremendous amounts of money on recall and repair expenses. Both the nature and the economics of all manufacturing sectors are influenced by the implementation of automation in their activity, regardless of the labor complexity involved.
Raising technical feasibility is the focal point of the year 2018, to prepare the ground for complete automation. Adapting human capital to these changes involve reducing staff and investing in hardware. Depending on each manufacturing company’s labor supply and demand, these changes could be either positive or negative. The one factor that could influence the outcome is how much research and knowledge sits behind each decision that business owners make.
Automation is a tool for augmenting profitability and reduce labor costs, which is why it is worth the initial investment. Most manufacturing companies choose to invest in programmable logic controllers to increase input and output monitoring. Complex hardware also requires quality technical support, meaning that manufacturing companies should always opt for automation suppliers that can provide repairs, on-site programming and startup assistance. In addition, the opinion of manufacturers should be considered, especially referring to mitigating labor shortages and using new technologies. Providers such as PDF Electric & Supply offer complete hardware solutions and information related to automation products. Manufacturing business owners can choose from the numerous self-contained blocks available on their website while saying goodbye to initial control and debugging. Specialists will deal with complicated programming while companies can take advantage of the many benefits of automation.
Each year comes with tremendous changes in terms of tech. This is the reason why all industries must remain up to date with the latest trends. Energy connections and automation constitute the stepping stone of the manufacturing industry. The future predictions for this niche are promising and everyone should be prepared for the up-and-coming diversifications.

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utorak, 10. travnja 2018.

Resveratrol by CCRES






In the past decade, the small polyphenol resveratrol has received widespread attention as either a potential therapy or as a preventive agent for numerous diseases. Studies using purified enzymes, cultured cells, and laboratory animals have suggested that resveratrol has anti-aging, anti-carcinogenic, anti-inflammatory, and anti-oxidant properties that might be relevant to chronic diseases and/or longevity in humans. Although the supporting research in laboratory models is quite substantial, only recently data has emerged to describe the effects of resveratrol supplementation on physiological responses in humans. The limited number of human clinical trials that are available has largely described various aspects of resveratrol's safety and bioavailability, reaching a consensus that it is generally well-tolerated, but have poor bioavailability. Very few published human studies have explored the ability of resveratrol to achieve the physiological benefits that have been observed in laboratory models, although many clinical trials have recently been initiated. This review aims to examine the current state of knowledge on the effects of resveratrol on humans and to utilize this information to develop further guidelines for the implementation of human clinical trials.






Resveratrol ili 3,5,4′-trihidroksistilben, je stilbenoid, derivat stilbena, a pripada velikoj skupini polifenolnih spojeva (polifenola). Neke vrste biljaka proizvode resveratrol kao odgovor na ozljedu, infekciju gljivicama, ultraljubičasto zračenje ili drugu vrstu stresa. Resveratrol je topljiv u mastima, a osnovu molekule resveratrola čine dva aromatska prstena, povezana dvostrukom vezom. Prisutnost te dvostruke veze omogućava postojanje resveratrola u dva izomerna oblika, cis- (Z) i trans- (E) resveratrol. Trans- i cis-resveratrol mogu biti u slobodnom obliku ili vezani na glukozu (kao glukozidi). Resveratrol-3-O-β-glukozid se naziva piceid, a trans-oblik resveratrola pri izlaganju ultraljubičastoj svjetlosti izomerizira u cis-oblik. Trans-resveratrol u obliku praška je stabilan pri 75 %-tnoj vlazi i pri 40 °C u prisutnosti zraka. No, nestabilan je u prisutnosti visokog pH, dok je cis-resveratrol, ako ga se štiti od svjetla, relativno stabilan pri sobnoj temperaturi u 50 %-tnom etanolu. Nizak pH također uzrokuje pretvorbu, tj. izomerizaciju cis-resveratrola u trans-resveratrol. Sadržaj resveratrola u kožici grožđa i pulpi je stabilan nakon fermentacije i skladištenja tijekom dužih perioda. Ipak, dominantan oblik resveratrola jest trans-resveratrol, a pojava cis-resveratrola u npr. nekim vinima se događa upravo zbog fotoizomerizacije, djelovanja enzima tijekom fermentacije ili otpuštanja s viniferina, polimera resveratrola. Također, pokazalo se da je trans-resveratrol više biološki aktivan oblik resveratrola.


Istraživanja pokazuju da se oko 70 % oralno uzimanog resveratrola apsorbira, no samo se manje količine nepromijenjenog resveratrola mogu naći u plazmi. Naime, iako se resveratrol dobro apsorbira, njegova biološka raspoloživost je mala ( 1 %) zbog njegovog brzog metaboliziranja i izlučivanja. Resveratrol se primarno izlučuje urinom i metabolizira se na tri načina, uključujući glukonuridaciju i sulfaciju fenolnih skupina te hidrogenaciju alifatske dvostruke veze. Zanimljivo je da hidrogenaciju dvostruke veze vrlo vjerojatno provode crijevne bakterije, dok se druga dva procesa odvijaju u jetri. Najbrojniji metaboliti resveratrola u ljudi su trans-resveratrol-3-O-glukuronid i trans-resveratrol-3-sulfat, a pokazalo se da se više od 80 % resveratrola konjugira u resveratrol-glukuronid, dok se ostatak pretvara u resveratrol-sulfat. Također, pokazalo se da je biološka raspoloživost resveratrola u obliku glukozida (npr. piceid), a kojeg ima u soku od grožđa, još manja, te da na biološku raspoloživost trans-resveratrola iz crnog vina ne utječe hrana. Točnije, biološka raspoloživost trans-resveratrola iz vina je gotovo ista i kada se vino uzima na prazan želudac i kada se uzima s hranom. Potrebno je napomenuti da crno vino sadrži više flavonoida kvercetina nego što ga sadrži bijelo vino. Kvercetin može inhibirati sulfaciju i glukuronidaciju resveratrola, što omogućuje da nemetabolizirani oblici resveratrola ulaze u krvotok, a čime bi se poboljšala biološka raspoloživost resveratrola.


Resveratrol pripada velikoj skupini polifenolnih spojeva (polifenola), a neke ga vrste biljaka proizvode kao odgovor na ozljedu, infekciju gljivicama, ultraljubičasto zračenje ili drugu vrstu stresa. Resveratrol se nalazi u grožđu, vinu, soku od grožđa, kikirikiju i bobičastom voću, no najbogatiji je prirodan izvor resveratrola azijska medicinska biljka Polygonum cuspidatum, tj. Japanski dvornik. Istraživanja pokazuju da resveratrol djeluje kao antioksidans te da može imati i djelovanje slično ili suprotno djelovanju estrogena. Također, istraživanja pokazuju da resveratrol ima i brojna biološka djelovanja koja mogu spriječiti razvoj raka i da ima određena biološka djelovanja koja utječu na sprječavanje kardiovaskularnih bolesti. Općenito, resveratrol se ne smatra toksičnim niti uzrokuje značajne posredne nuspojave u ljudi. Međutim, postoje stanja gdje bi resveratrol bio teoretski kontraindiciran, a uključuju uzimanje antikoagulansa, nesteroidnih protuupalnih lijekova, inhibitora HMG-CoA reduktaze, antagonista kalcijevih kanala, inhibitora HIV proteaze, imunosupresiva i oralnih kontraceptiva. Također, ne preporuča se da žene koje su oboljele od estrogen-osjetljivih tumora, trudnice, dojilje i mlađi od 18 godina uzimaju dodatke prehrani s resveratrolom.


Poznato je da flavonoidi pokazuju širok spektar biološkog djelovanja, uključujući antitumorsko i antiviralno djelovanje, no molekularni mehanizam tih djelovanja još nije razjašnjen. Glavne stanice našeg urođenog imuniteta su fagociti (neutrofili, monociti, makrofagi) i stanice ubojice (eng. Natural Killer cells, NK stanice). Neutrofili i fagociti proizvode tvari toksične za mikroorganizme, kao što su vodikov peroksid, superoksid anion (O-2 ) i dušikov oksid, a aktivirani makrofagi otpuštaju proupalne citokine (faktor nekroze tumora, interleukin, …) kako bi izazvali upalu u tkivima. Upalnom procesu pomažu i makrofagi te neutrofili koji proizvode prostaglandine, leukotriene i tromboksane, skupno zvane eikozanoidi. Ovi se spojevi sintetiziraju enzimskom razgradnjom arahidonske kiseline koja se nalazi u fosfolipidima staničnih membrana. Sinteza prostaglandina je katalizirana ciklooksigenazom, ali nusprodukti eikozanoida nastaju i djelovanjem lipooksigenaze te uz pomoć citokroma p450. Zajedno svi ti spojevi koji potječu od arahidonske kiseline uzrokuju bol, upalu, oticanje, vazokonstrikciju i trombozu. Također, povišeni eikozanoidi se javljaju u oboljelih od tumora i pretpostavlja se da imaju ulogu u proliferaciji tumorskih stanica i angiogenezi. Istraživanja pokazuju da resveratrol može potisnuti upalne odgovore preko njegovog antioksidativnog djelovanja i preko ometanja brojnih reakcija vezanih uz metabolizam arahidonske kiseline i proizvodnju eikozanoida. Naime, pokazalo se da resveratrol inhibira stvaranje radikala superoksida (O-2 ) i vodikovog peroksida. Također, visoke se koncentracije dušikova oksida proizvode tijekom upalnih procesa uz pomoć dušikov oksid sintaze (NO sintaza), a sprječavanje ekspresije NO sintaze mogao bi biti važan protuuplani mehanizam. Istraživanja su pokazala da resveratrol može snažno inhibirati upravo proizvodnju dušikova oksida u aktiviranim makrofagima. Također, istraživanja daju naslutiti da bi resveratrol mogao imati protuupalnu ulogu preko supresije biosinteze prostaglandina. Naime, resveratrol značajno smanjuje otpuštanje arahidonske kiseline i uzrokuje značajno pogoršanje djelovanja ciklooksigenaze-2 (COX-2), čime se i posljedično smanjuje biosinteza prostaglandina. Dodatna istraživanja su pokazala da resveratrol može inhibirati djelovanje i lipooksigenaze. Nadalje, pokazalo se da resveratrol utječe in vitro na proliferaciju T-stanica potaknutu mitogenima i antigenima na način da je suprimira i to do čak 90 %, pri koncentraciji od 25 µM. S druge strane, pokazalo se da resveratrol (2 mg na dan), davan miševima, ne pokazuje značajan učinak na broj T-limfocita. Također, pokazalo se da resveratrol (10 mM) suprimira proliferaciju T-stanica, dok pri koncentraciji od 50 mM resveratrol u potpunosti inhibira proliferativan odgovor ovih stanica. S druge strane, pri koncentracijama manjim od 10 mM, pokazalo se da resveratrol nema učinka na staničnu proliferaciju ili čak slabo pojačava proliferaciju T stanica. Daljnja istraživanja su pokazala da resveratrol in vitro ne utječe na proliferaciju T-stanica potaknutu interleukinom-2, ili je čak suprimira, te da resveratrol ili nema utjecaja na proizvodnju interferona-γ i interleukina-12 ili istu smanjuje, dok je zabilježeno smanjenje stvaranja čimbenika nekroze tumora-α. Naime, pokazalo se da resveratrol sprječava aktivaciju transkripcijskog faktora NF-kB, što sugerira da resveratrol inhibira staničnu proliferaciju i proizvodnju citokina upravo preko inhibicije aktivacije NF-kB. Također, pokazalo se da resveratrol može, pri nižim koncentracijama (1 µM i 100 nM), potaknuti apoptozu što sugerira mogućnost da bi resveratrol mogao biti, u sličnim koncentracijama koje se nalaze u plazmi nakon umjerene konzumacije vina, važan čimbenik u antiinfektivnim, protuupalnim i antikancerogenim nespecifičnim imunološkim odgovorima. Ipak, navedene koncentracije se ne mogu povezati s inhibitornim učinkom na imunološki sustav, iako se stimulirajući učinak niskih koncentracija ne može isključiti. Naime, pokazalo se da se niže koncetracije resveratrola mogu povezati sa značajnim povećanjem citotoksičnog djelovanja T-limfocita i stanica ubojica. Ukratko, in vitro istraživanja o učinku resveratrola na razvoj staničnih imunoloških odgovora i proizvodnju citokina su nedosljedna i često kontradiktorna, odnosno pokazalo se da resveratrol pri visokim koncetracijama ima supresivni učinak, dok pri nižim ima stimulirajući učinak. Također, rezultati in vitro i in vivo istraživanja su često proturječni, a pretpostavlja se da je razlog tome loša biološka raspoloživost resveratrola ili pak njegovo brzo metaboliziranje. Također, točan se mehanizam djelovanja resveratrola, u smislu supresije ili modulacije imunoloških odgovora, još ne zna, pa je očito da su potrebna daljna istraživanja koja bi temeljito objasnila mehanizam djelovanja resveratrola na imuloški sustav.






Pojedina istraživanja pokazuju da resveratrol može inhibirati proliferaciju raznih ljudskih tumorskih staničnih linija, uključujući stanice raka dojke, prostate, želuca, debelog crijeva, gušterače i štitnjače. Također, pojedina istraživanja pokazuju da oralno primijenjen resveratrol može inhibirati razvoj raka jednjaka, crijeva i dojke uzrokovanog kemijskim karcinogenima. Ipak, općenito su rezultati poprilično proturječni, a potrebna su i daljnja istraživanja o učniku resveratrola na rizik od raka u ljudi. Provedena su istraživanja o učinku oralno uzimanog resveratrola na rak debelog crijeva u miševa s genetičkom predispozicijom za razvoj raka debelog crijeva i pokazuju da resveratrol može štititi od raka debelog crijeva u štakora nakon primjene karcinogena. Točnije, oralno uziman resveratrol u dozama od 1 mg kg-1 se može povezati sa smanjenjem broja i veličine tumora jednjaka u štakora nakon primjene karcinogena. Također, pojedina istraživanja male doze resveratrola (0,02 do 8 mg kg-1), danog kao profilaksa, mogu povezati sa smanjenjem ili čak sprječavanjem razvoja tumora crijeva u štakora koji su primili razne karcinogene. Istraživanja pokazuju i da topikalno primijenjen resveratrol može spriječiti razvoj raka kože u miševa. Točnije, topikalno primijenjen resveratrol može inhibirati oštećenje kože prije i poslije izlaganju UVB zrakama te može smanjiti pojavnost raka kože. S druge strane, oralno uziman resveratrol je potpuno neučinkovit u smislu sprječavanja raka kože. Također, oralno primijenjen resveratrol se nije pokazao učinkovitim u inhibiranju razvoja raka pluća uzrokovanog karcinogenima iz dima cigarete. No, jedno je istraživanje pokazalo povezanost intraperitonealno injektiranog resveratrola (2,5 do 10 mg kg-1) s usporavanjem rasta raka pluća u miševa. Međutim, nije poznato da li veći unos resveratrola štiti ljude od razvoja raka. Štoviše, istraživanja o farmakokinetici resveratrola u ljudi pokazuju da i visoke doze resveratrola ne moraju biti dovoljne za postizanje koncentracija potrebnih za sustavno sprječavanje raka. Naime, in vivo učinkovitost resveratrola je ograničena njegovom lošom sustavnom biološkom raspoloživosti i dostupnosti. Najjače, koliko god malo bilo, antikancerogeno djelovanje resveratrol ima u slučaju direktnog kontakta, tj. u slučaju tumora kože i tumora gastrointestinalnog trakta. Za druge tumore su rezultati jako nesigurni, čak i pri upotrebi izuzetno visokih doza resveratrola. Ipak, istraživanja pokazuju da i vrlo visok unos resveratrola iz hrane ili dodataka prehrani ne rezultira razinama u tkivima koje su dovoljno visoke da bi on djelovao antikancerogeno.


Umjereno pijenje crnog vina se često povezuje sa smanjenjem rizika od kardiovaskularnih bolesti, a navedeno je poznato pod nazivom „francuski paradoks“. Francuski paradoks je pojam za primijećenu malu smrtnost od koronarnih bolesti srca u Francuskoj unatoč relativno visokom unosu zasićenih masti i pušenju. Pojedina istraživanja daju naslutiti da resveratrol iz crnog vina može imati važnu ulogu u ovog fenomenu, iako, općenito, rezultati su poprilično nedosljedni. Tako pojedina istraživanja povezuju pijenje vina s nižim rizikom od kardiovaskularnih bolesti, u odnosu na one koji piju pivo ili druga alkoholna pića, dok druga istraživanja ne nalaze povezanost. Međutim, iako se umjerena konzumacija alkohola dosljedno povezuje s 20 do 30 %-tnim smanjenjem rizika od bolesti srca, nije poznato da li polifenoli iz crnog vina dopridonose dodatnom smanjenju rizika. Zanimljivo je da istraživanja provedena na glodavcima kojima je dano crno vino bez alkohola pokazuju povezanost navedenog i poboljšanja raznih parametera povezanih s kardiovaskularnih bolesti. Također, istraživanja pokazuju da se može konzumacija ekstrakta polifenola grožđa povezati s akutnim poboljšanjima endotelne funkcije u ljudi oboljelih od bolesti srca. In vitro istraživanja pak povezuju resveratrol s brojnim učincima u smislu zaštite krvožilnog sustava. Naime, njegova uloga uključuje inhibiciju ekspresije vaskularnih adhezijskih molekula, inhibiciju proliferacije vaskularnih stanica glatkih mišića, poticanje aktivnosti endotelne sintaze dušikovog oksida, inhibiciju agregacije trombocoita i inhibiciju peroksidacije LDL-a. Međutim, koncentracije resveratrola potrebne za navedene učinke su često više od onih koje su izmjerene u ljudskoj plazmi nakon oralne konzumacije resveratrola. Istraživanja na životinjama daju naslutiti da visoke oralne doze resveratrola mogu smanjiti rizik od tromboze (stvaranja ugrušaka) i ateroskleroze, ali postoje i istraživanja koja povezuju resveratrol s povećanjem rizika od ateroskleroze. Iako je njegova prisutnost u crnom vinu potaknula veliki interes o mogućnostima resveratrola u sprječavanju kardiovaskularnih bolesti, trenutno ne postoje uvjerljivi dokazi da resveratrol štiti kardiovaskularni sustav, posebno ne u dozama prisutnim u jednoj do dvije čaše vina na dan. Također, pronađeno je i objašnjenje francuskog paradoksa, tj. glavnu ulogu u zdravlju kardiovaskularnig sustava ima konzumacija većih količina voća, maslinova ulja i povrća.


Istraživanja na kvascu Saccharomyces cerevisiae pokazuju da se resveratrol može povezati s produljenjem života kvasca. Naime, pokazalo se da se ograničavanje unosa kalorija može povezati s produljenjem života brojnih vrsta, uključujući sisavce. Pretpostavlja se da sirtuini (Sir2, Sirt1, Sir2l1 ili Sir2α) imaju ulogu u odgovoru na stres (vrućina, gladovanje) i da su odgovorni za produljenje života uslijed ograničavanja unosa kalorija. Dosadašnja istraživanja su potvrdila da resveratrol utječe na dugovječnost upravo aktivacijom Sirtuin 1 gena. U kvascu, restrikcija kalorija potiče aktivnost enzima Sir2, a pokazalo se da resveratrol ima isti učinak, bez da se ograničavaju kalorije. Naime, resveratrol je rezultirao produljenjem životnog vijeka kvasca za 70 %, a pokazalo se da se produljuje i životni vijek crva (Caenorhabditis elegans) i vinskih mušica (Drosophila melanogaster). Daljnja istraživanja su pokazala da, ovisno o dozi, resveratrol može produljiti životni vijek i riba (Nothobranchius furzeri). Točnije, životni vijek navedene ribe je oko devet tjedana, a pokazalo se da maksimalna doza resveratrola povećava prosječan životni vijek za 56 %. Međutim, zabilježen je blag porast smrtnosti mladih riba uzrokovan resveratrolom, dok jedno istraživanje nije pronašlo povezanost resveratrola i produljenja životnog vijeka u D. melanogasterni u C. elegans. Međutim, nije poznato da li se resveratrol može povezati s produljenjem životnog vijeka u viših životinja. Jedno istraživanje je pokazalo da resveratrol produljuje život miševa hranjenih visoko kaloričnom prehranom, u smislu da im je životni vijek istovjetan onima hranjenima standardnom prehranom. Visoko kalorična se prehrana sastojala od dodavanja hidrogeniranog kokosovog ulja u standardnu prehranu. Miševi na visoko kaloričnoj prehrani su konzumirali oko 30 % više kalorija nego miševi na standardnoj prehrani te su postali pretili i oboljeli od šećerne bolesti. Miševi na visoko kaloričnoj prehrani su imali visok stupanj smrtnosti u usporedbi s miševima na standardnoj prehrani. Međutim, miševi na visoko kaloričnoj prehrani kojoj je dodan resveratrol (22 mg kg-1) su imali 30 % niži rizik od smrti nego oni miševi na visoko kaloričnoj prehrani bez dodanog resveratrola, što znači da su stope smrtnosti miševa na visoko kaloričnoj dijeti s resveratrolom slične stopama smrtnosti miševa na standardnoj prehrani. Daljnja istraživanja pokazuju da resveratrol ne produljuje životni vijek miševa ako su ga počeli dobivati sredinom životnog vijeka. Također, pokazalo se da se resveratrol, uziman na početku mladenaštva, ne može povezati s produljenjem životnog vijeka u miševa hranjenim normalnom prehranom, iako su doze bile osam puta veće nego one koje su normalizirale životni vijek pretilih miševa hranjenih visoko kaloričnom prehranom iz prijašnjeg istraživanja. Također, iako istraživanja pokazuju da resveratrol povećava djelovanje homolognog humanog enzima (Sirt1) u laboratoriju, nije poznato da li resveratrol može produljiti životni vijek ljudi. Štoviše, koncentracije resveratrola potrebne za povećanje djelovanja ljudskog Sirt1 su značajno veće nego koncentracije izmjerene u ljudskoj plazmi nakon oralnog uzimanja resveratrola. Potrebna su klinička ispitivanja koja bi odredila da li resveratrol ima ikakav učinak na dugovječnost u ljudi.


Potrebno je napomenuti da su dolje navedena istraživanja provedena na staničnim kulturama s koncentracijama resveratrola koje su puno više nego što bi to ljudi mogli konzumirati oralnim putem. Međutim, istraživanja pokazuju da unatoč slaboj biološkoj raspoloživosti resveratrola (Vidjeti „Svojstva i metabolizam“), on i dalje može imati dolje navedena biološka djelovanja.
Laboratorijska istraživanja pokazuju da resveratrol djeluje kao antioksidans te da uspješno neutralizira slobodne radikale i inhibira oksidaciju lipoproteina niske gustoće (eng. Low Density Lipoprotein, LDL). Međutim, upitna je uloga resveratrola kao antioksidansa u ljudskom organizmu, s obzirom da je slabo biološki raspoloživ te se nakon oralne primjene nalazi u našem organizmu u značajno manjim količinama nego što ima drugih antioksidansa, kao što su vitamin C i E te glutation. Također, resveratrol se u nađem organizmu metabolizira u razne metabolite koji mogu imati i manje antioksidativno djelovanje nego sam ressveratrol.[1-4] Istraživanja pokazuju da resveratrol može imati i djelovanje slično ili suprotno djelovanju hormona, estrogena. Naime, estrogeni su hormoni koji se vežu za receptore estrogena na stanicama, čime nastaje kompleks estrogena i receptora estrogena. Navedeni kompleks dalje djeluje s DNA i time modulira ekspresiju određenih gena. Agonist estrogena je tvar koja koja se veže na receptore estrogena i izaziva reakciju sličnu samim estrogenima, dok je antagonist estrogena tvar koja se veže na receptore estrogena, ali sprječava ili inhibira reakciju koju izazivaju endogeni estrogeni. Kemijska struktura resveratrola je vrlo slična kemijskoj strukturi dietilstilbestrola, koji je agonist estrogena. Pretpostavljalo se da bi zbog toga resveratrol mogao djelovati kao agonist estrogena, no on kao takav djeluje pri određenim uvjetima, dok pri drugim uvjetima djeluje kao antagonist estrogena. Naime, u estrogen pozitivnim stanicama raka dojke, tj. u stanicama raka dojke koje imaju receptore za estrogen, resveratrol djeluje kao agonist estrogena u slučaju nedostatka endogenog estrogena, 17β-estradiola. Međutim, u prisutnosti endogenog estrogena, 17β-estradiola, resveratrol djeluje kao antagonist estrogena. Također, pokazalo se da resveratrol djeluje ili kao agonist ili kao antagonist estrogena ovisno o tipu stanice, obliku receptora estrogena (ER-α ili ER-β) i, kako je već navedeno, prisutnosti endogenih estrogena. Pokazalo se da resveratrol može i inhibirati djelovanje aromataze, enzima koji sudjeluje u biosntezi estrogena iz androgena.[1,5-9] Istraživanja pokazuju da resveratrol ima i brojna biološka djelovanja koja mogu spriječiti razvoj raka. Jedno od bioloških djelovanja jest inhibicija stvaranja karcinogena iz prokarcinogena. Prokarcinogeni su tvari koje same po sebi nisu karcinogene, ali se u našem organizmu metaboliziraju u aktivne karcinogene koji onda oštećuju DNA i druge molekule. Enzimi iz obitelji citokroma P450 potrebni su za aktivaciju nekih prokarcinogena, a inhibicijom se enzima iz obitelji citokroma P450 može smanjiti rizik od razvoja nekih vrsta tumora uzrokovanih kemijskim karcinogenima. Istraživanja pokazuju da resveratrol može smanjiti aktivnost enzima citokroma P450. Također, posebni enzimi koji se nazivaju biotransformacijski enzimi faze II potiču eliminaciju potencijalno opasnih toksina i karcinogena iz našeg organzma, a istraživanja daju naslutiti da resveratrol može povećati aktivnost enzima II faze, kinon reduktaze. Međutim, ako se ipak oštećenja DNA dogodi, staničan se ciklus može privremeno zaustaviti da bi se oštećena DNA popravila. U slučaju da se oštećenje ne može popraviti, aktiviraju se biokemijski procesi koji vode staničnoj smrti (apoptoza). Međutim, poremećena regulacija staničnog ciklusa može rezultirati propagacijom mutacija koje dopridonose razvoju raka. Stanice se raka brzo razmnožavaju i ne reagiraju na stanične signale zaslužne za poticanje programirane stanične smrti, apoptoze. Nadalje, stanice raka napadaju zdrave, normalne stanice uz pomoć posebnih enzima, metaloproteinaza matriksa, a da bi tumor mogao ubzrano rasti, potrebno je da se razviju nove krvne žile procesom koji se naziva angiogeneza. Također, poznato je da upalni procesi mogu poticati staničnu proliferaciju i angiogenzu te inhibirati apoptozu. Istraživanja su pokazala da resveratrol može poticati zastoj staničnog ciklusa u slučaju pojave stanica raka te da inhibirati proliferaciju i poticati apoptozu istih. Također, pokazalo se da resveratrol inhibira djelovanje pojedinih metaloproteinaza matriksa, a i da inhibira angiogenezu. Istraživanja su pokazala da resveratrol također može inhibirati djelovanje nekih enzima uključenih u upalne procese, kao što su ciklooksigenaza i lipoksigenaza, te da može inhibirati djelovanje upalnih transkripcijskih faktora, kao što su NFκB i AP-1. [1,10-25] Resveratrol ima i određena biološka djelovanja koja utječu na sprječavanje kardiovaskularnih bolesti. Naime, poznato je da je ateroskleroza upalna bolest, a početak razvoja ateroskleroze uključuje djelovanje upalnih bijelih krvnih zrnaca na stijenku krvne žile uz pomoć adhezijskih molekula. Nadalje, proliferacija stanica vaskularnih glatkih mišića ima važnu ulogu u napretku ateroskleroze, a agregacija trombocita je prvi korak u stvaranju kvnog ugruška koji može začepiti krvnu žilu i rezultirati srčanim ili moždanim udarom. Također, poseban je enzim, endotelna sintaza dušikova oksida, potreban za stvaranje dušikova oksida koji omogućuje opuštanje krvnih žila, tj. vazodilataciju. Pogoršana vazodilatacija ovisna o dušikovom oksidu se također može povezati s povećanim rizikom od kardiovaskularnih bolesti. Istraživanja pokazuju da resveratrol može inhibirati ekspresiju adhezijskih molekula i proliferaciju stanica vaskularnih glatkih mišića. Nadalje, pokazalo se da resveratrol može stimulirati djelovanje endotelne sintaze dušikova oksida i inhibirati agregaciju trombocita.





Resveratrol se nalazi u grožđu, vinu, soku od grožđa, kikirikiju (posebno kuhanom) i bobičastom voću iz vrste Vaccinium, uključujući borovnicu i brusnicu. Ostali izvori resveratrola su dud, mahunarke, rabarbara i eukaliptus. Međutim, najbogatiji je prirodan izvor resveratrola azijska medicinska biljka Polygonum cuspidatum, tj. Japanski dvornik. U grožđu se resveratrol nalazi u kožici, a njegova količina varira ovisno o sorti grožđa, geografskom položaju i izlaganju fungalnoj infekciji (npr. Botrytis cinerea). Naime, resveratrol je fitoaleksin kojeg biljke proizvode kao odgovor na infekciju gljivicama. Duljina fermentacije, odnosno vrijeme u kojem je vino u doticaju s kožicom grožđa također određuje sadržaj resveratrola u vinu, pa tako bijela i rosé vina općenito sadrže manje resveratrola nego crna vina. Naime, crno se vino fermentira s kožicom grožđa, čime se može ekstrahirati resveratrol, dok se bijelo vino fermentira nakon što se kožica uklonila. Dominantan oblik resveratrola u grožđu i sokovima od grožđa je trans-resveratrol glukozid (trans-piceid), dok vina sadrže značajne količine aglikona resveratrola, koji nastaju uklanjanjem šećera s resveratrola tijekom fermentacije. Mnoga vina također sadrže značajne količine cis-resveratrola, koji nastaje tijekom fermentacije ili se otpušta s viniferina, polimera resveratrola. Upravo zbog otpuštanja resveratrola iz viniferina, vina imaju općenito dva puta veću koncentraciju resveratrola od sokova od grožđa. Kao što je već spomenuto, količina resveratrola u hrani i pićima varira, no općenito crno vino sadrži između 0,2 i 5,8 mg L-1 resveratrola, ovisno o sorti grožđa, dok ga bijela vina sadrže puno manje. No, muškatno grožđe sadrži najveće koncentracije resveratrola, a vina proizvedena iz takvog grožđa mogu sadržavati više od 40 mg L-1 resveratrola. Također, kokosovo brašno, čokolada za kuhanje i tamna čokolada sadrže između 0,35 i 1,85 mg kg-1 resveratrola, dok se kuhanjem bobičastog voća gubi oko 50 % resveratrola. Većina dodataka prehrani s resveratrolom sadrže ekstrakte korijenja Polygonum cuspidatum, koji sadrže oko 50 % trans-resveratrola. Međutim, takvi ekstrakti mogu sadržavati i emodin, koji može imati laksativni učinak kad je uziman u većim količinama. Također, na tržištu se resveratrol javlja u obliku ekstrakata grožđa, ali i u kombinaciji s drugim polifenolima kao što je kvercetin, te u kombinaciji s vitaminima i mineralima.


Općenito, resveratrol se ne smatra toksičnim niti uzrokuje značajne posredne nuspojave u ljudi. Istraživanja pokazuju da oralno uziman resveratrol u dozi od 5 g ne uzrokuje ozbiljne nuspojave u ljudi. Također, pokazalo se da oralno uziman trans-resveratrol pri dozama od 300 mg po kilogramu tjelesne težine ne rezultira štetnim pojavama. Međutim, dugotrajni učinci uporabe resveratrola trenutno još uvijek nisu poznati. Istraživanja pokazuju da resveratrol inhibira agregaciju trombocita, pa bi teoretski visok unos resveratrola iz dodataka prehrani mogao povećati rizik od krvarenja, ako se uzima zajedno s antikoagulansima, kao što je varfarin, ili s lijekovima kao što su kopidogrel, dipiridamol te nesteroidnim protuupalnim lijekovima, kao što su aspirin i ibuprofen. Također, pokazalo se da resveratrol inhibira aktivnost citokroma P450 3A4, pa bi teoretski visok unos resveratrola, u obliku dodataka prehrani, povećao biološku dostupnost i toksičnost lijekova koji se metaboliziraju iz pomoć citokroma P450 3A4. Neki lijekovi koji se metaboliziraju pomoću citokroma P450 3A4 su inhibitori HMG-CoA reduktaze, antagonisti kalcijevih kanala, inhibitori HIV proteaze, imunosupresivi i dr. Pojedina istraživanja upozoravaju na teoretsku mogućnost da resveratrol može stimulirati rast raka dojke, upravo zbog strukturne kemijske sličnosti resveratrola i fitoestrogena. Međutim, druga istraživanja nalaze da resveratrol može čak smanjiti rizik od raka dojke te da može i usporiti rast raka dojke. Razlog tome se nalazi u istraživanjima koja pokazuju da resveratrol usporava razvoj krvnih žila, što posljedično usporava i rast tumora. Također, s obzirom da resveratrol djeluje kao antagonist estrogena, teoretski je moguće da može ometati i djelovanje oralnih kontraceptiva. Sve dok se točno ne razjasni estrogeno djelovanje resveratrola, ne preporuča se da žene koje su oboljele od estrogen-osjetljivih tumora, kao što je rak dojke ili jajnika, uzimaju dodatke prehrani s resveratrolom. Istraživanja također pokazuju da je resveratrol snažan inhibitor topoizomeraze, enzima koji imaju ulogu u replikaciji DNA, čime on ima djelovanje slično nekim lijekovima protiv raka, kao što je etopozid i doksorubicin. Navedeno svojstvo istovremeno dopridonosi potencijalnim i antikarcinogenim i karcinogenim svojstvima resveratrola. Također, pojedina istraživanja povezuju uzimanje bioflavonoida, uključujući i resveratrola, tijekom trudnoće s razvojem dojenačke leukemije. Međutim, daljnja istraživanja ne nalaze takvu povezanost, čak štoviše, pokazuju da resveratrol može štititi od razvoja raka zbog njegovog antioksidativnog svojstva. Ipak, trenutno još uvijek nije utvrđeno da li je sigurno uzimati resveratrol tijekom trudnoće i dojenja, pa se općenito ne preporuča uzimati resveratrol u navedenim stanjima. Također, dodaci prehrani s resveratrolom se ne preporučaju mlađima od 18 godina.

Zeljko Serdar
Hrvatski Centar Obnovljivih Izvora Energije (HCOIE)


subota, 3. ožujka 2018.

LNG, or Liquefied Natural Gas

WHAT IS LNG? 

Liquefied natural gas (LNG) is essentially natural gas in liquid form, having been reduced to a liquid state by a process of cooling to a temperature of minus 162°C. In the course of its transformation to a liquid, the ambient gas undergoes a volume reduction of approximately 600 to oneIt can then be easily loaded aboard specially designed tankers for transportation.
While in transit, LNG is maintained in a liquid state by means of highly efficient insulation systems surrounding the cargo compartment. Nevertheless, small amounts of LNG inevitably vaporise or ‘boil off’, since no system can be 100% perfect. This boil-off actually serves a useful purpose, as it helps to auto-refrigerate the remaining LNG and keep it in its liquid state. Boil-off is also used to supplement bunker oil to fuel the tankers.
Once it reaches the receiving facility, the LNG is transferred to special storage tanks, where it is kept in liquid form at near atmospheric pressure and temperatures of minus 160°C. It remains in storage until required for redelivery.


Cheaper

The production and transport of LNG are far simpler and cost less energy than any other fossil fuel.
In the ten year period between 2005 and 2015, LNG production capacity will double from 150 Million mT to over 300 Million mT creating additional supply into in the market. This, combined with the discovery of affordable methods for extracting unconventional gas and the limited use of natural gas as a feedstock, means pricing for natural gas and LNG offers a significant advantage over crude oil linked products.  The industry view is this will continue for the foreseeable future as long as these unconventional resources continue to be accessed and additional capacity from the US, China and Australia offsetting any tightening in the market due to Asian demand.
In addition to the unit prices, further pressure will come from carbon taxes (white and green certificates) resulting from the lack of progress towards the EU 20/20/20 regulations which will force these businesses to review their energy choices away from oil products.  This is also combined with efficiency savings as gas appliances can offer 3-5% higher efficiency than equivalent oil fired products.

Cleaner

LNG is odorless, non-toxic and non-corrosive.  When exposed to the environment, LNG rapidly evaporates, leaving no residue on water or soil.  If spilled, LNG would not result in a slick because 100 percent of it evaporates, leaving no residue behind.
Composed primarily of methane, the main products of the combustion of natural gas are carbon dioxide and water vapor, the same compounds we exhale when we breathe. Coal and oil are composed of much more complex molecules, with a higher carbon ratio and higher nitrogen and sulfur contents. This means that when combusted, coal and oil release higher levels of harmful emissions, including a higher ratio of carbon emissions, nitrogen oxides (NOx), and sulfur dioxide (SO2). Coal and fuel oil also release ash particles into the environment, substances that do not burn but instead are carried into the atmosphere and contribute to pollution. The combustion of natural gas, on the other hand, releases very small amounts of sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides, virtually no ash or particulate matter, and lower levels of carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, and other reactive hydrocarbons.






















































































































Natural gas, as the cleanest of the fossil fuels, can be used in many ways to help reduce the emissions of pollutants into the atmosphere. Burning natural gas in the place of other fossil fuels emits fewer harmful pollutants, and an increased reliance on natural gas can potentially reduce the emission of many of these most harmful pollutants.

Large stocks

The worldwide stocks of natural gas are considerably greater than the stocks of accessible crude oil (access to shale gas has added 40% to world gas reserves which are estimated at over 130 years).
It makes LNG less dependent on oil-producing nations.

 

Flexible distribution


Liquefied natural gas is just as easy to transport as petrol or diesel, because it does not depend on an underground pipeline network.
This means it is an interesting alternative for industrial companies in areas that do not have access to the natural gas grid and currently rely on other fuels. Stocks can be added by transporting the gas via rail, waterways and motorways.



LNG FOR INDUSTRY

Gas is used in industrial processes for energy and heat processes.  Whilst gas via pipelines is the most common delivery method, LNG offers the opportunity for businesses located off the natural gas grid to utilize this energy source.  In addition, LNG provides flexibility to companies connected to the natural gas grid where additional demand or peak requirements can be more effectively met through this type of delivery mechanism.

Natural Gas is the cleanest burning fossil fuel allowing companies off grid to switch from crude oil related products to reduce their carbon footprint.  By using LNG, natural gas can be delivered to each location and then regassified to provide gas when required by the process.  This allows the flexibility and efficiency of using natural gas without the investment or development of additional pipeline connection to meet the natural gas grid.  By switching from heating oil or heavy oil to a gas appliance, a reduction in combustion CO2 of over 30% can be achieved (source – Atlantic Consulting). 


Converting to LNG is simple with the only investment required by a customer is the conversion of the equipment to run on this fuel.  All technical, safety and regulatory matters will be supported by the team at Prima LNG and with on-site time kept limited to minimize disruption.  All equipment is pre-installed to allow maximize efficiency and key connection and commissioning on site simple.





























































LNG AS A FUEL

LNG as an alternative for diesel or heavy fuel oil in the truck and maritime markets is now becoming a reality.  With new regulations promoting the use of cleaner and lower noise emitting energy sources combined with the high energy density of LNG, gas burning engines are now developing rapidly in the market.

Maritime Industry

The first gas powered ferry begin in Europe in 1998 in Norway with an estimated 7% of all shipping in this region using LNG today.  Key drivers for this is the new ECA zones being created within coastal and inland waterways.
Strict IMO regulations regarding reduction in SOx and NOx will come in place from 2015-6 with LNG seen as the most efficient route to meet this and future requirements.
Under the revised MARPOL Annex VI, the global sulphur cap is reduced initially to 3.50% (from the current 4.50%), effective from 1 January 2012; then progressively to 0.50 %, effective from 1 January 2020, subject to a feasibility review to be completed no later than 2018. The limits applicable in ECAs for SOx and particulate matter were reduced to 1.00%, beginning on 1 July 2010 (from the original 1.50%); being further reduced to 0.10 %, effective from 1 January 2015. (source www.imo.org)

Truck Fueling

EU legislation requires a reduction in greenhouse gas intensity of the fuels used in vehicles by up to 10% by 2020.  This has led to the development of the Blue Corridor program to support the building of a core of LNG and CNG fueling stations across Europe.  For the end user, LNG as a fuel can provide multiple benefits

1Economical reasons

  • Higher purchase cost for CNG/LNG trucks and buses are compensated by return of investment due to a favorable or more stable fuel price, if the proper, steadily favorable fiscal policy is kept in place (Benelux: 15 ct/lit cheaper than diesel).
  • Favorable fuel taxation is essential and customer awareness is crucial for broader market acceptance. CNG and LNG are sold in kg therefore the related cost advantage of natural gas vs. liquid fuels is not transparent due to a wrong labeling.

2Environmental reasons

  • CNG/LNG is the cleanest fossil fuel with the best carbon to hydrogen ratio (CH4) reducing 27% CO2 vs petrol, 12% vs diesel and savings of up to 97% are possible when using renewable sourced methane.
  • Harmful substances and air pollutants, such as fine particulate matter are absolutely avoided with Nox emissions extremely low (even 50% below EUR VI)
  • New Euro VI regulations mean that HGVs have had to lower their emissions, resulting in more and more Fleet Owners considering the benefits of LNG and dual fuel.

3Noise

Noise & vibrations are halved in Natural Gas Trucks vs traditional fuelled trucks (72dB (A) versus 82dB (A)); LNG trucks meet the “PIEK standards” resulting in a substantial contribution to the reduction of noise, in case of, for example, city distribution (supermarkets)

4Safe fuel

CNG/LNG is a very safe fuel, compared to other fuels safety is assured due to its physical properties, but also due to the stringent safety requirements for the vehicle fuel systems:
  • Natural gas is lighter than air, not accumulating on the floor in unlikely case of a leakage;
  • Natural gas auto ignition temperature is higher than for most other fuels, namely 580°C (i.e. almost 2 times as much as gasoline);
  • Natural gas flammability range is quite narrow, generally between 5-15% by volume of air; 
  • Natural gas fuel systems, icl the tank, are approved according to the most stringent international safety regulations, i.e. ECE R110, assuring the proper design, installation and mechanism.

























































































LNG IN EUROPE

For the EU, the main reason for pursuing the option of LNG imports has always been security of supply, but the economic benefits are becomng increasingly apparent.
Indeed, the LNG option strengthens the negotiating position of European gas buyers vis-à-vispipeline exporters, while at the same time acting as a trigger for market creation and price reduction. Unfortunately, the current drop in LNG import volumes has given critics ammunition to highlight its vulnerabilities. To address this issue, a concerted effort and unreserved commitment to LNG are needed on the part of the EU, its Member States and terminal operators, especially in Poland, where the impact of the first Eastern European LNG terminal will largely depend on the transition of the domestic gas market.

















SAFETY AND REGULATION

Safety

Natural gas is nothing new. It has been transported for decades, and new technologies make continuous growth possible.
The LNG industry's highest priority has always been safety and security, which is reflected in the industry's enviable safety record. LNG is not stored under pressure and it is not explosive. Although a large amount of energy is stored in LNG, it cannot be released rapidly enough if released into the open environment to cause the overpressures associated with an explosion. LNG vapors (methane) mixed with air are not explosive in an unconfined environment. A major incident resulting in a large release of LNG could result in a fire, but only if there is the right concentration of LNG vapor in the air (5% – 15%) and a source of ignition.

Ship Safety

More than 135,000 LNG carrier voyages have taken place without major accidents or safety or security problems, either in port or at sea. (The International Group of Liquefied Natural Gas Importers (GIIGNL) – 2011).
LNG ships are double-hulled, with more than six feet of void space or water ballast between the outer and inner hulls and the cargo tanks.  The double hulls help to prevent leakage or rupture in the event of an accident. LNG ships are also equipped with sophisticated leak detection technology, emergency shutdown systems, advanced radar and positioning systems, and numerous other technologies designed to ensure the safe and secure transport of LNG.

Terminal Safety

LNG import and export terminals are designed with multiple layers of protection and must meet rigorous safety regulations. They are equipped with spill containment systems, fire protection systems, multiple gas, flame, smoke and low- and high-temperature detectors and alarms, automatic and manual shut-down systems, video surveillance systems, and highly trained personnel.

Regulation

The storage of LNG in safe cryogenic tanks and to use it as a fuel is already regulated by European standards such as:
  • EN 13645
  • EN 13458
With its high experience in flammable gas, Prima LNG and the different Business Units of SHV group have developed a standard for LNG satellite plants in order to comply with these regulations, but also to set a high level of safety.
Local regulations, when existing, are also taken into account. Prima LNG can also assist you to get the local approval from authorities, if needed.

Technical standards

As part of its expertise, Prima LNG has developed a European standard for LNG satellite plants - based on the Europeans norms and standards and with a specific focus on the following points:
  • Safety first
  • Low methane emission concept
  • Easy usage for the end customer
Prima LNG and the different Business Units of the SHV group worked with third party specialists in order to challenge this design and to launch this activity in the most sustainable way possible.






































































LNG U REPUBLICI HRVATSKOJ









Projekt LNG terminala na otoku Krku strateški je investicijski projekt u svim fazama razvoja i realizacije, što znači u obje planirane faze, plutajućeg i kopnenog. 

Europska unija ulože 101,4 milijuna eura bespovratnog novca u izgradnju plutajućeg terminala za ukapljeni plin na Krku, a o čemu u Bruxellesu potpisan i ugovor. 

Europski novac, iz Instrumenta za povezivanje Europe-CIF, čini oko trećine ukupne cijene projekta procijenjenog na 383,6 milijuna eura. 

Nedvojbena je činjenica da se važnost izgradnje LNG terminala na Krku ne mjeri isključivo u tržišnim kategorijama, nego i u sigurnosnim i geostrateškim kategorijama. 

Naime, trgovina LNG-om potiče rast tržišta prirodnog plina te povećava sigurnost i konkurentnost opskrbe. 

Također, uz moguću promjenu geopolitičkih odnosa, a tu prije svega moguću opskrbu tržišta EU plinom iz različitih izvora, projekt izgradnje našeg LNG terminala postaje važno pitanje energetske politike u gravitirajućem geopolitičkom okruženju Hrvatske.

Hrvatski Centar Obnovljivih Izvora Energije (HCOIE)



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