Project Description

Natural Gas Compression

95 Quarter Credits / 1650 Clock Hours

Cost : $30,750.00 – 2 year cost, annual cost is $15,375.00

Start Date :August 23, 2021

The Natural Gas compression CAT/ Ariel Emphasis AST Degree Program encompasses hands-on training courses in the natural gas compression field.  These courses provide individuals with the skills and knowledge necessary to excel in some of the most in demand and satisfying technical career opportunities available today.

Natural Gas Compression – CAT/ Arie l Emphasis students will work hands-on. acquiring a basic knowledge of general technician abilities through troubleshooting electronic controls on engines and compressors. Students will complete theory classes then move into the lab to apply what they learned.  Along with the basic curriculum, students will be introduced to live projects regularly.

CPI has partnered with CAT/ Cleveland Brothers and Ariel to offer students training on today’s technology. This partnership ensures CPI will always have the current technology available to use as training aids on the newest equipment industry has to offer. During the CAT/ Ariel Emphasis. students will learn how to disassemble/ assemble components, perform regular preventive maintenance, test/ adjust/troubleshoot various systems specific to CAT and Ariel equipment. Students will graduate with experience working with the Ariel local dealership network – Cleveland Brothers. CAT – and with comprehension on full spectrum operations. This program is designed to prepare and place trained graduates in a career in the natural gas compression industry. Students may need to travel within Pennsylvania or the NorthEast United States corridor for employment with CAT/ Cleveland Brothers Equipment Company.  Inc. or Ariel Corporation. Additional employment opportunities within these companies or other companies may be available nationally and globally.

Career Opportunities:

    • Oil and Gas Field Technician
    • Service Writer or Claims Writer
    • Shop Foreman
    • Part and Service Sales Representative
    • Field Service or Maintenance Technician

See Core Course Descriptions tab for a detailed credit, course, and hours breakdown of this Program.

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  • Submit your application and enrollment agreement to the Adult Education office.
    Your completed enrollment agreement and application should be submitted to the Adult Education office with the $155 fee, prior to starting the following steps.

  • Submit High School Transcript, Diploma, or GED to Adult Education Office. CPI required verification of high school graduation. Please submit one of the following to the adult education office; high school diploma, high school transcripts, or GED. Questions about this requirement please call the Adult Ed office at 814-359-2793 ext. 207.

  • Meet with a Financial Aid representative. If you are utilizing federal student aid to pay your tuition, the website for filing your FAFSA is CPI’s school code is: 015445. For assistance with financial aid (student loans and grants), please contact CPI’s Financial Aid Office at (814) 359-2793 x 252 : Jan Pepperday, or (814) 359-2793 x 262 : Ron Benton,

  • Take the Accuplacer exam. Accuplacer is used to measure your readiness for the program and allows us to recommend any remedial work prior to your start. This exam consists of two parts; arithmetic and reading comprehension. On average, the exam takes approximately 30-60 minutes to complete. The exam is not timed and you are allotted ample time to complete.  The document attached to this email provides numerous websites that offer exercises / practice exams for you to prepare. Arrange to take the Accuplacer exam at CPI by contacting Adult Education 814-359-2793 ext. 207

  • Order textbooks. Contact your Program Coordinator for a list of the textbooks. They can be purchased new or used. Renting is available on some websites, just be sure the rental is for the entire length of time you will need to utilize that textbook. Some texts are used all year

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First Term
PSS-101 Pathways to Success Seminar 1.0 cr 15 hrs
HDC-121 Work Place Safety 2.0 cr 24 hrs
HDC-122 Tooling, Hardware, and Fabrication 1.0 cr 30 hrs
HDC-141 Basic Diesel Engines 4.0  cr 72 hrs
NGE-120 Caterpillar Gas Engine – Introduction to Gas Engines and Software 3.0 cr 42 hrs
MTH-131 Technical Mathematics 4.0 cr 48 hrs

Second Term
NGE-121 Caterpillar Gas Engine – Fluids and Fluid Systems 3.0 cr 42 hrs
NGC-130 Introduction to Natural Gas Compression and Ariel Compressors 3.0 cr 36 hrs
EEI-134 Industrial Safety 3.0 cr 30 hrs
PHY-155 General Physics 4.0 cr 48 hrs

Third Term
NGE-122 Caterpillar Gas Engine – Fuel and Ignition Systems 3.0 cr 42 hrs
NGC-131 Ariel Natural Gas Compressor Systems 3.0 cr 48 hrs
CSA-120 Computer Software Applications: Word Processing, Spreadsheets, and Presentations 2.0 cr 48 hrs
EIE-122 Introduction to AC/DC Electricity 2.0 cr 36 hrs
EIM-143 Basic Hydraulics 2.0 cr 30 hrs
EIM-146 Basic Pneumatics 1.0 cr 24 hrs


Fourth Term
NGC-190 NGC Company Externship 10.0 cr 320 hrs

Fifth Term
NGE-123 Caterpillar Gas Engine – Intake and Exhaust Systems 3.0 cr 42 hrs
NGC-230 Ariel Natural Gas Compressor Maintenance and Repair 4.0 cr 72 hrs
HDC-155 Electrical Systems 3.0 cr 54 hrs
EIP-120 Introduction to Control Logic 1.0 cr 18 hrs
COM-121 Fundamentals of Public Speaking 3.0 cr 36 hrs

Sixth Term
NGE-124 Caterpillar Gas Engine – Electronic Controls 3.0 cr 42 hrs
NGC-231 Ariel Natural Gas Compressor Major Component Removal and Replacement 4.0 cr 72 hrs
CDL-131 Basic Commercial Driving 1 4.0 cr 48 hrs
SOC-151 Customer Service 3.0 cr 42 hrs
COM-130 Technical Writing 3.0 cr 36 hrs

Seventh Term
CDL-141 Basic Commercial Driving 2 3.0 cr 109 hrs
SOC-221 Professionalism and Employment Readiness 2.0 cr 24 hrs
SOC-233 Introduction to Leadership 4.0 cr 48 hrs
EIP-251 Programmable Logic Controllers I 4.0 cr 72 hrs



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CDL-131 (4.0 Credits) – Basic Commercial Driving 1

This course teaches students requirements of the U.S. Department of Transportation. Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, and other regulatory agencies related to the operation of commercial equipment. Students will also learn and prepare for the PennDOT Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) Permit (if applicable) and will learn basic operating techniques (shifting, backing, alley-docking, and serpentine turns) of commercial vehicles through off-road driving and simulation training.

CDL-141 (3 .0 Credits) – Basic Commercial Driving 2

Students pick-up where CDL-131 ends and begin learning the fundamentals of on-road driving utilizing multiple configurations of equipment (example: tractor/trailer combination, flatbed operations, dump truck operations, and variable transmission systems). Students   culminate   their   program by taking a PennDOT CDL exam (if applicable).

HDC-121 (2.0 Credits) – Work Place Safety

This course will instruct students how to work in a safe environment for themselves and fellow employees. It will cover shop safety practices including identifying safety materials (SDS sheets), fire extinguishers, eye wash stations, first aid kits, electrical power shut downs, lock-out/tag-out, and personal protection equipment.

HDC-122 (1.0 Credits) – Tooling, Hardware, and Fabrication

This course will instruct students on all tooling used in the Heavy Diesel Construction industry. It will start with basic hand tooling, air and electrical power tools, and shop tooling and end with precision measuring tools. This course also provides students with instruction on many different types of hardware found in the industry. Students will be required to identify different styles, types, and grade classifications of hardware.  Additionally, this course is designed to teach students basic abrication skills such as; basic GMAW and SMAW welding, basic oxyacetylene torch set up, and cutting, grinding and cutting with an electric grinder, along with additional safety on these types of equipment.

HDC-141 (4.0 Credits) – Basic Diesel Engines

This course will cover the basic diesel engine. Students will look at how it came to be. the advancements from a simple mechanical engine through all electronic controlled engines. The students will be required to disassemble, measure critical parts, and reassemble an engine to running condition.

HDC-155 (3.0 Credits) – Electrical Systems

This course starts as a basic electricity theory and will move through lighting circuits, internal cab circuits, engine electronics, and multiplexing. Students will be required to build, diagnose, identify, and troubleshoot all types of circuits. This course also delves into deeper electrical and electronics components and issues related to electrical systems. Students learn multiple control circuits, usages of controller networking, and key concepts of troubleshooting.

NGC-130 (3.0 Credits) – Introduction to Natural Gas Compression and Ariel Compressors

This course is designed to introduce students to Ariel compressor models and natural gas compression. Natural gas upstream. midstream. and downstream flow applications are described and illustrated with specific Ariel compressor models for each usage. Compressor and skid package components are shown and described. Each student will access Ariel’s website and learn to navigate, find, and download technical documentation pertaining to compressor operation and maintenance procedures. Students will enroll in and complete assigned modules within Ariel’s Online Basic School. Basic math skills will be utilized to calculate and determine compressor operation.

NGC-131 (3.0 Credits) – Ariel Natural Gas Compressor Systems

This course identifies Ariel compressor components and specifies each items location and function.  The student will study lubrication fundamentals and compressor frame and force feed lubrication systems. Students will disassemble, rebuild, and test piston rod packing cases, suction and discharge valves, lubrication distribution blocks, and clearance devices. Students will measure, record, and interpret compressor main component clearances and locate component weight stamping and complete a compressor balance sheet. Each student will research specific topics at the Learning Resource Center and perform presentations of their discoveries. Students will complete assigned Ariel Online Basic School modules and the certificate final test.

NGC-190 (10.0 Credits) – CAT/ Ariel Externship

Students will complete a 4-week externship at Cleveland Brothers Equipment Company and another 4 weeks at Ariel Corporation and an Ariel customer location. This externship will provide students with an opportunity to work with experienced technicians. supply personnel and equipment operators in the shop and onsite locations to enhance knowledge and skills gained from course work in the Natural Gas Compressor program.

NGC-230 (4.0 Credits) – Ariel Natural Gas Compressor Maintenance and Repair

This course has students removing, rebuilding, and replacing Ariel natural gas compressor components. Students will remove and replace wear components, rebuild assemblies based on Ariel’ s recommended maintenance intervals. The course will cover Ariel’s Warranty and Start Up procedures to ensure safe and reliable operation of a compressor system. Throughout the course, students will be setting, measuring, and verifying compressor clearance values to validate correct reassembly processes were followed and achieved. Ariel’s Performance Program will be covered, and students will build compressors using instructor given parameters and then use the software to optimize and troublesl1oot compressor operation. Each student will research a specific maintenance topic at the Learning Resource Center and present their findings to the class.

NGC-231 (4.0 Credits) – Ariel Natural Gas Compressor Major Component Removal and Replacement

This course leads students through the procedures and methods for aligning the compressor to the driver to minimize vibration and   stresses on equipment. Students will also participate in removing and replacing major compressor components that could fail during a catastrophic event. These components include crosshead guides, cylinders, and connecting rods which had not been removed in previous courses. Discussions will also cover frame replacement. The course will also focus on compressor operational and performance issues related to skid configurations, vibration, and valve failures. The course completes with students verifying compressor component measurements and alignments are with in Ariel’s published specifications.

NGE-120 (3.0 Credits) – Caterpillar Gas Engine Introduction to Gas Engines and Software

This course will provide engine related foundational information about gaseous fuels, Caterpillar gas engines, service information software, and engine diagnostic software. The course will begin with a review of the characteristics of paraffin based gaseous fuels and their effects on spark ignited gas engines. The student will study the differences between diesel and gas engines and why these differences are necessary when burning gaseous fuels. This section of the course will continue with discussions on high and low heat values, stoichiometric processes, air fuel mixture requirements, and detonation/preignition concerns. The course will expose the students to the history of Caterpillar gas compression engines, as well as an introduction to the Cat’s current gas compression product line.

The students will then turn their attention to the use of the Service Information System (SIS). SIS is an integral part of Caterpillar’s parts and service organizations. It is a software-based tool providing parts and service information for Caterpillar engines and machines since 1977.

This course will familiarize students with the capabilities of SIS and the types of information derived from it. The various methods of information gathering will be reviewed. SIS will be used throughout curriculum courses to access Caterpillar service information regarding parts, operation, maintenance, specifications, testing, adjusting, and troubleshooting. Finally, the course will concentrate on the use of Caterpillar Electronic Technician (ET) software, ET is a Windows based software used to communicate with Caterpillar diesel and gas engine control modules. ET facilitates such electronic tasks as control module programming, conducting operational tests, monitoring and data logging critical information, and troubleshooting codes and events. The course will concentrate on the hands-on use of the software.

NGE-121 (3.0 Credits) – Caterpillar Gas Engine Fluids and Fluid Systems

This course is an in-depth study of the engine lubrication and cooling systems used on Caterpillar gas engines. The course will begin with Cat fluid recommendations and preventive maintenance and progress through the advanced diagnostics associated with those systems and their fluids. This course will provide the student with all the critical information that will be used in dealing with customers. performing proper preventive maintenance and analyzing fluid system problems

NGE-122 (3.0 Credits) – Caterpillar Gas Engine Fuel and Ignition Systems

This course will provide tile essentials of the operation, maintenance, testing, adjusting, and troubleshooting of tile various types of fuel and ignition systems used on Caterpillar gas engines. The course will begin with instruction on fuel system components to include gas regulators, carburetors, and electronically controlled fuel system components. The second part of the course will concentrate on the ignition system and begin with tile types of ignition systems used on Caterpillar spark ignited engines. Classes will include lessons on magneto type ignition systems and the current electronic controlled coil over plug systems.

NGE-123 (3.0 Credits) – Caterpillar Gas Engine Intake and Exhaust Systems

This course will cover the various types of intake and exhaust systems used on Caterpillar gas engines. Students will learn each system type and the components which make them up. The effects of aftercooling, turbocharging and wastegating will be covered. Discussions on system testing will include compression tests, blowby tests, and emission testing. The course will conclude with class sessions to support the use of Caterpillar Gas Engine Rating Pro (GERP) software.

NGE-124 (3_0 Credits) – Caterpillar Gas Engine Electronic Controls

This course is an in-depth study of tile electronic control systems used on Caterpillar gas engines. Using a system’s concept approach, students will learn tile operation, programming, and troubleshooting of the system. Lessons will concentrate on electronic concepts to ensure students have the knowledge and confidence levels needed to analyze control system issues.

EEl-134 (3.0 Credits) – Industrial Safety

This course reviews basic workplace safety concepts and practices. Focus is on the common causes of workplace accidents and the role of OSHA and other federal and state agencies in regulating safety.

EIE-122 (2.0 Credits) – Introduction to AC/DC Electricity

This course covers tile fundamentals of AC and DC electricity and provides hands-on electrical measurement, circuit building, and circuit analysis practice. Tile theory and application of inductance, capacitance, electromagnetism, and transformers are all also covered.

EIM-143 (2.0 Credits) – Basic Hydraulics

This course introduces hydraulic power theory and application. Learners develop the skills and knowledge needed to work with hydraulics in modern industry. Key topics covered include hydraulic power safety, hydraulic circuits, hydraulic schematics and the principles of hydraulic pressure and flow.

EIM-146 (1.0 Credits) – Basic Pneumatics

Basic Pneumatics prepares learners to work with industrial pneumatic applications. It introduces pneumatic power and takes learners through key topics and skills in pneumatic power & safety, pneumatic circuits, pneumatic schematics and the principles of pneumatic pressure and flow.

EIP-120 (1.0) Credits – Introduction to Control Logic

This hands-on class introduces and builds on control logic concepts and electrical wiring techniques utilized by various industries to control electric, pneumatic, and hydraulic machines and processes, ON/OFF, sequencing, and timer-based control are covered in depth with emphasis placed on the development of relevant troubleshooting skills. NOTE: This course is designed to meet the prerequisite for the EIP-251 (Programmable Logic Controllers I) course. Students who have successfully completed the EIE124 (Electric Motor Control) course do not need to complete this course.

EIP-251 (4.0 Credits) – Programmable Logic Controllers I 

This course utilizes an Allen Bradley ControlLogic Programmable Logic Controller (PLC) to teach the fundamentals of PLCs. Topics include; PLC orientation, operation, programming and troubleshooting.


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