Odorability analysis for the ENI biomethane plant in Friuli Venezia Giulia.

1 March 2023

For the first time, Eni has fed biomethane produced out of livestock effluents, agricultural matrices and residual biomass into the Friuli Venezia Giulia network. 

It did so thanks to the plant located in Codroipo (province of Udine), which has been producing biogas to generate electric power since 2009. 

Inthis circular economy project, LOD was involved to verify the correct odorabilityof the gas before releasingit into the network.


Biomethane plant in Codroipo

In Codroipo there is the first biomethane plant connected to a gas distribution network in Friuli Venezia Giulia.

It became a property of Eni in March 2021, and will graduallyproduce up to 499 smc/hour of biomethane when fully operational, leading to areduction in CO2 emissions of about 67 percent compared to the equivalentamount of fossil methane.

Rhino-analytical analyses performed

Before release into the network, in order to certify thecorrect odorability ofbiomethane, a rhino-analyticalanalysis took place inour laboratory with the purpose of verifying that at different concentrationthresholds in the air,the olfactory response of the Odorized Gas mixture met the safety thresholdsdescribed by the standard.

This analysis takes place using selected examiners described andstandardized by UNI 7133-3 for which the laboratory is accredited.


In fact, whether natural gas or biomethane, it is necessary to add an odorizer to the gas before it can be dedicated to domestic or similar uses, in order to make its presence perceptible to the human nose.

The rhino-analytical analyses on the biomethane produced by the plant is a key step in the input process, to verify proper odorizability. In fact, being produced out of organic matrices, biomethane could contain substances that might alter the olfactory perception of the odorant, presenting a risk for the population.  

We have also discussed about the need for such analyses in this article.


Virtuous example of circular economy


The conversion to biomethane of the Codroipo plant, which has been producing biogas to generate electric power since 2009, is also a virtuous example of a circular economy that finds preferable to use an existing infrastructure, in addition to the use of agricultural and waste raw materials.

Telefriuli also covered this plant in an in-depth report.

LOD: Laboratorio Olfattometria Dinamica

Spin-off dell’Università degli Studi di Udine