What is LPG?

What’s in
a Name?

LPG stands for “Liquefied Petroleum Gas”. The term is widely used to describe two prominent members of a family of light hydrocarbons called “Natural Gas Liquids” (NGLs): propane (C3H8) and butane (C4H10).

The term “liquefied gas” may seem a contradiction in terms since all things in nature are either a liquid or a solid or a gas. Yet, liquidity is the unique character of LPG that makes it such a popular and widely used fuel. At normal temperature and pressure, LPG is gaseous. It changes to a liquid when subjected to modest pressure or cooling. In liquid form the tank pressure is about twice the pressure in a normal truck tyre, which means it is very safe when properly handled. LPG is a derivative of two large energy industries: the processing of natural gas liquids and the refining of crude oil.

Propane and Butane are chemically quite similar but the difference in their properties means that they are particularly suited to specific uses.

  • Propane’s lower boiling point suits outdoor storage and is primarily used for central heating, cooking as a transport fuel and numerous commercial applications.
  • Butane, is used mainly in cylinders for portable applications in mobile heaters in the home, and for leisure activities such as boats, caravans and barbecues. Butane can only be used as a propellant, refrigerant or to fuel torches. Often, Propane and Butane will be mixed to get the best energy yields and properties.

Propane or Butane?

200 million

There are 200 million LPG cylinders in circulation in India with 20 million being added annually.

87%

Approximately 87% of Bolivia’s population uses LPG as fuel of which 97% is bottled.

44 Million

The US LPG industry serves over 44 million residential consumers.

Where does LPG
come from?

Learn more on where LPG comes from, how it is made as co-product of natural gas and crude oil production

Where is LPG used?

LPG is a portable, clean and efficient energy source which is readily available to consumers around the world and used in thousands of applications.