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OPTIMIZING ARTIFICIAL GAS LIFT THROUGH TWO-PHASE FLOW MODEL
Lesenia Santiago (les139@pitt.edu)

INTRODUCTION: HOW TO IMPROVE GAS LIFT METHODS
Today’s high oil prices reflect insufficient recovery methods in deep-sea oil production. The current industry demands for the optimization of artificial gas lift methods. Artificial gas lift is a device for raising liquid by means of the energy contained in compressed gas that is being mixed with the liquid. [5] The most improvable method of gas lift is the two-phase flow network model. One of the most common and useful techniques incorporated in the model is gas injection that lowers the density of the oil in order to better elevate it. The objectives of this design system are to maximize oil production, maximize profits and optimize the design of gas injection. The gas lift optimization will consider flow interactions between wells sharing a flow line. As a result of the innovative technology, the standards in which the models strive to achieve must also undergo modifications to improve its efficiency. The codes of ethics are important in rationalizing research for optimization. These methods should benefit both the company and the public. The knowledge of these codes for beginning engineers reinforces the reason engineers are important to society and its growth.

When examining economic alternatives, it’s essential to minimize operating costs and maximize profit. Intermittent gas lift becomes the more economical alternative, compared to continuous gas lift. Fig. 1 shows a schematic diagram of this artificial lift method. [1] Injection of gas into the casing annulus occurs when surface pressure, gas column weight, and hydrostatic pressure reach the desired value. Expanding gas thrusts the liquid upwards from underneath. The cycle ends with decreased pressure that causes the gas lift valve to be closed and gas injection to stop as a result of the production of oil and gas. The series repeats with liquid build up from the control valve pushing the oil upward.

FIGURE 1 VARIOUS INTERMITTENT GAS LIFT DESIGNS
The ability to specify the design options of intermittent gas lift allows the method, conventional intermittent gas lift (CIGL), intermittent gas lift with plunger (IGLP), intermittent gas lift with chamber (IGLC) or gas lift with pig, also known as pig-lift (PL), to be the most efficient to the individual production system. [1] In the IGLP system, separation of oil and gas flowing in the well occurs to prevent opposite flow of oil. In the IGLC system, a chamber reduces the backpressure against the reservoir formation by accumulating the oil at the bottom of the well. In the PL system, a foam-pig inside the double column of the well separates the oil and gas flowing in the well to prevent fallback of oil. The difficulty to relate conditions, such as vertical liquid flow complexity, to special cases in the field make it hard to choose the preferred method between continuous gas lift and intermittent gas lift, even though intermittent gas lift has a clear economic advantage in comparison to continuous gas lift.

CHOOSING AN ARTIFICIAL LIFT METHOD
There are multiple forms of gas lift methods that are all designed to provide gas in a safe and usable form. The method of artificial gas lift is chosen to optimize the use and performance of artificial lift methods and parameters, which directly correlate to production. Choosing the most efficient method includes calculating flow conditions of the reservoir and the pressure of the wells. Gas injection provides energy to the flow in the production well that allows the gas to move vertically. The controversy of the artificial gas lift method lies in the period in which the gas is injected; either continuously or when certain measurements are met. Continuous gas lift is a method through reservoir gas pressure that supplies power for a non-stop upward flow of oil through the well. Intermittent gas lift is a cyclic method in which a liquid slug is allowed to build up in tubing string.

ECONOMICAL ALTERNATIVE: INTERMITTENT GAS LIFT

University of Pittsburgh, Swanson School of Engineering

This agreement shows that the two parties involved are working together to serve a common purpose. In improving technologies.3 billion to help resolve economic loss claims related to the Gulf seafood industry. engineers can’t solicit or accept financial or other valuable consideration from outside agents in connection with their work. one has to follow the engineering code of ethics faithfully. meaning that all information must be disclosed that could influence judgments. Consequently. When the two have each other’s trust. IMPORTANCE OF PERFECTING ARTIFICIAL LIFT OPTIMIZATION As the economy worsens.Lesenia Santiago NETWORKING PIPING IN A TWO-PHASE FLOW MODEL Engineering solutions to solve the extensive problem of simultaneously lifting gas and liquid became present in the current efforts to flow gas. every aspect must be considered when looking at the safety. Two of the most useful works focused on the application of two-phase flow network pipeline model are Floquent (2009) and Beggs and Brill (1973). and welfare of the public for reputation purposes. health. for one to become a successful engineer. These engineering codes of ethics are essential for engineers to be successful in each and every task that they wish to fulfill. health. jobs are done much easier.” [7]The BP oil spill is an example of the importance of issuing statements only in an objective and truthful manner. he stated. “Issue public statements only in an objective and truthful manner. and new ideas come more fluently. and engineers must not solicit or accept a contract from a governmental body on which a principal or officer of their organization serves as a member. there is a demand to prefect processes of mining unrecyclable fossil fuels. oil. This is why it is important for engineers to live by each code of ethics. and welfare’ also. In doing so. Without these ethics. This bond symbolizes trust and understanding that no wrongdoing will ever take place. Floquet (2009) presented a network model able to perform multiphase simulations from the well to the surface with each pipeline calculated through software and an algorithm to guarantee the mass and momentum closure at each line. The slightest hint that one of these may be in jeopardy must trigger a red flag in the engineer’s mind to go back for revision so that all three are insured. Engineers must be selfless when it comes to the public’s safety. health.8 billion. and welfare of the public. we avoid deceitful acts. Deceitful acts may inhibit engineer’s ability to act for each employer or client as faithful agents or trustees. Engineers must act for each employer as faithful agents or trustees. engineers must act faithfully towards the clients or employers to indemnify the agreement. the CEO of BP released statements in an objective and truthful manner. We feel the costs of the 2 .”[6] As an engineer. When employers and engineers work together. There are a few codes that I personally find important to becoming the best engineer that I can be. Calculation of single pipe pressure often validates the efficiency of the system but the calculations become lengthy when engineers need to test systems with multiple pipes. that makes it much easier to follow the next and the next until one subconsciously adheres to all of them. When working together. one avoids deceit. “The proposed settlement represents significant progress toward resolving issues from the Deep water Horizon accident and contributing further to economic and environmental restoration efforts along the Gulf Coast. [2] ETHICS Engineering ethics defines elements essential to becoming a successful engineer. Avoiding deceit leads to enhanced reputation and increased job opportunities. there is an agreement between the two. health. I myself get self-gratification from knowing that the public is safe when engineering tasks were done. engineers would lose these elements and thus not be able to fulfill their jobs responsibly. Beggs and Brill utilize a practical and classical two-phase flow correlation that is able to determine pressure gradient and hold-up in pipes with any inclination and under any flow pattern. Likewise to all other codes of ethics. assuring the safety. Although engineers must hold paramount the safety. compensation must not be accepted. and job should be done with the public in mind. In a statement released by the BP CEO addressing cost settlements following the spill. Though BP was responsible for a huge disaster. When one releases statements that are objective and truthful. and welfare of the public. This includes a BP commitment of $2. this creates a bond between the engineer and the employer. by acting for each employer or client as faithful agents. By following one code. The first code is “engineers shall hold paramount the safety. industrial engineers must combine technology efficiency with cost efficiency. BP estimates that the cost of the proposed settlement would be approximately $7. trust and hope was reestablished in BP when the CEO made these comments. but there are many engineers that don’t follow these codes. Every decision. These codes are fairly simple. health. engineers must keep in mind the codes of ethics laid down by the National Society of Professional Engineers. The second code of ethics that’s important is. Hence. As the reliance on engineering innovations increases. we feel the need to increase our technological evolution. and water from different wells at offshore petroleum production systems.”[8] Here. and welfare is of the upmost importance. task. by avoiding deceitful statements.

[3] The importance of creating the most efficient system in a developing country lies on the operators’ reliance on the machines because of the absence of innovative technology. http://encyclopedia2. V. “Two-phase flow modeling. (2002). Engineers of all ages should be familiar with the code of ethics. It is important that young engineers research a desired engineering topic and relate it to the codes of ethics for the engineer to understand that their assignments are not simply jobs but an initiative to improve the society. In recent years Exxon Production Research Company assisted in improving gas lift efficiency in Venezuela and Creole Petroleum Corporation and through their efforts designed a model ideal for their situation. [4] ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS I would like to thank Dr. [4] Dutton.Lesenia Santiago fossil fuels rising while big oil companies are enjoying large profits and many are doing relatively little to innovative and help ultimately lower the costs for consumers. These regulations gives meaning to the projects the engineers are working on. Sometimes there is a lost in motivation in the early stages of learning to become an engineer and through an assignment similar to this one. Although initially research and implications of the redesigned systems may be costly.M. (2008).” Intermittent gas lift in Aghajari oil field. [3] Redden.” Modeling. “Introduction. David. This reduced rate is the optimum rate within the system limitations. Engineering Code Of Ethics [5] Bagdasarov. J. Budny for giving me the tools to learn how to be an innovative engineer. A code of ethics (there are many) provides standards to guide the behavior of all the profession’s members. “Theory.html IMPORTANCE OF UNDERSTANDING ETHICS FOR YOUNG ENGINEERS Allowing engineering students to think about specific projects involving technology gives them the opportunity to understand the difference they can make in the future.thefreedictionary. J. and bettering impoverished areas around the globe. The company also needs to be able to deviate the flow of gas when a compressor has failed or is going through maintenance.uk/finance/newsbysector/energy/oil andgas/9120582/BP-statement-on-the-oil-spill-settlementin-full. Ian R.com/Gas+Lift [6] NSPE Code of Ethics for Engineers #1 [7] NSPE Code of Ethics for Engineers #3 [8](2012). Through my research to find a topic I was introduced to new technology that current engineers are working on. simulation and optimization of continuous gas lift systems for deepwater offshore petroleum production. Data is retrieved from computer files and card inputs to be able to make the well’s optimization calculations. BP Statement on the Oil Spill Settlement in Full. students learn the importance of the fundamental concepts they are introduced to. (2010). G. helping the environment. REFERENCES [1] Ayatollahi. I would lastly like to thank the University of Pittsburgh for the resources to become a great engineer. The gas injection rate is reduced according to a priority ranking of the wells in such a manner that minimizes loss of revenue. I would like to thank the EXCEL staff for their ongoing encouragement and support to help me shine in engineering. a mathematical study. and successful machinery. Creole’s requirement for determining optimization comes from their unique need to pump produced gas to and underground reservoir. companies will lower prices as they earn higher profits. This theory of engineering allows us to be innovative in improving the world’s technology. I would like to thank my mother and grandmother for all their support in my up bringing and making me the determined person I am today. Improvements to gas lift could aid in the reduction of oil spills and non-usage of produced oil and gas.(2005). [2] de Souza. CONCLUSION: INNOVATIVE ENGINEERS SAVING THE WORLD The ability of engineers has grown from simply creating new technologies to implementing modifications to existing 3 . As engineers we continually strive to improve efficiencies and contribute to advances in society. Initiatives like this allow citizens to be apart of the countries profitable advances that create jobs and strengthen a struggling economy.telegraph. (2004).” Optimizing Gas-Lift Systems. Shahaboddin. They are put in place to ensure that the companies are truly running to benefit the public and not themselves. we hope that in the long term. http://www.N. Vidic and Dr.co.

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