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Liberty selects MTU gas generator sets for next-gen e-frac pumps

Rolls-Royce mtu gas generator sets will be used to power digiFrac pumps.

Rolls-Royce and Liberty Oilfield Services announced today the selection of Rolls-Royce’s MTU gas generator sets to power Liberty’s next generation digiFrac electric fracturing (e-frac) pumps. Liberty’s digiFrac is the industry’s first purpose-built, fully integrated e-frac pump. Rolls-Royce MTU gas generator sets will be used to power digiFrac pumps with continuous duty power that can withstand intense pressure pumping applications.

Liberty’s digiFrac is a power-dense e-frac pump with 40% more horsepower than conventional technologies. The pumps were built with the flexibility to utilize the most efficient power options. Using a natural gas fueled gen set, digiFrac will have at least 25% lower emissions compared with other off-grid power sources. The continuous duty MTU gas gen sets, which are already being utilized in stationary oil and gas applications globally, can be powered with LNG, CNG or field gas, resulting in significant fuel savings compared with diesel-powered units.

The first systems from Rolls Royce will be purchased by Liberty in 2022 in conjunction with the commercialization of the digiFrac fleet. Kirby Distribution & Services will supply the generator sets to Liberty through United Engines Manufacturing.

“Liberty is at the forefront of technology invention in the completion services industry, and the selection of MTU engines to power digiFrac is significant in our plan for continuous improvement. We chose MTU natural gas gen sets because of Rolls-Royce’s innovation potential to expand the power density of the solution over the same footprint,” said Chris Wright, Liberty CEO. “Together, these technologies advance environmental, social and corporate governance (ESG) goals of reducing emissions and delivering a low total cost of ownership solution to Liberty’s E&P customers.”

“The careful evaluation of sources of power generation for the power-dense operations led our team to determine that natural gas fueled reciprocating engines are the best power solution for hydraulic fracturing applications. Gas reciprocating engines are meaningfully more efficient than alternative off-grid power sources in managing large transient loads and variations in ambient temperature and pressure,” said Ron Gusek, President of Liberty. “When commercialized, Liberty will offer the industry’s first complete, designed-for-purpose electric suite of frac technology, including the digiFrac pump and power solution and our electric wireline and backside equipment. This will be the industry’s most advanced frac system available, providing a high degree of operational control and efficiency and the lowest emissions profile on the market.”

“This project is the result of the hard work of our oil and gas team, which was tasked with populating the market with products focused around the Rolls-Royce Power Systems PS 2030 strategy – aimed at transforming the company into an integrated, sustainable power solutions provider and delivering systems to electrify industries which aid in the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions,” said Dave Bosco, Senior Sales and Business Development Manager of Global Oil and Gas for Rolls-Royce Power Systems. “Our MTU GG20V4000D2 gas gen set is already a proven component in stationary applications operating in the Middle East and is now being cross released into the mobile oilfield equipment market.”

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