Multiphase Pumping and Subsea Processing

Lecture 14: Subsea

Arun S Chandel Assistant Professor


This lecture focuses on multiphase pump and subsea processing
Multiphase pump

Subsea processing

Subsea processing can be defined as any t treatment t t of f oil il before b f it reaches h the th offshore processing platform Benefits of subsea processing: • Subsea separation with re-injection of produced water increases oil production • Subsea removal of water reduces or eliminates the need for water treatment equipment topside • New marginal fields may be developed with minimum topside processing equipment .

p .Following are benefits of subsea processing: • Production from marginal g fields or well testing can be performed using very simple FPSO • If flaring is not allowed and gas can not be economically y exported. the SWAG concept (simultaneously water and gas injection) handles the gas subsea • Reduce risk of hydrate formation and less use of chemicals due to subsea water removal .

. allowing use of smaller pipelines and risers • Increased oil production potential • Phase and cost effective development p . The static head and the flow resistance decreases.Following are benefits of subsea processing: • Removing i the h water reduce d the h fl flow and d the specific gravity of the fluid.

Subsea pressure boosting can increase the production rate .

There are two main types of multiphase pump: • Positive displacement pumps such as twin screw pump by Sonsub and AkerKvaerner. . AkerKvaerner • Helico-axial pump from Sulzar and Framo.

The twin screw pump creates a volume chamber b the by th intermeshing i t hi of f two t rotating t ti screws .

Helico-axial pump consists of multistage centrifugal pumps and axial guide vanes .

– In addition. the increased fluid velocities in the flowline will also stabilise the flow regimes. slug . thus limiting the severity of slug.The following cases are typical applications where mutiphase boosting offers significant benefit • Medium to long tie back distances – – Subsea multiphase boosting was originally developed to enable tieback of remote fields to existing or new central processing facilities. – The pump assures compensation of frictional and static losses.

provided the pump inlet pressure and/or the water cut is higher. – Higher GOR’s may also represent good operating conditions. .The following cases are typical applications where mutiphase boosting offers significant benefit • Medium to low GOR – GOR below 500 – 1000 scf/bpd provides excellent condition for multiphase boosting. This may be the case for deep water.

The following cases are typical applications where mutiphase boosting offers significant benefit • Increased water depth– In deeper water the static back pressure on the wellhead generally becomes higher and the potential for multiphase boosting increases – Seabed pumping may also be very attractive even when installed at the riser base since the static part of the backpressure normally becomes very significant at the riser .

Followings are benefits of mutiphase boosting • Accelerated production – In most cases the subsea multiphase pump provides additional energy to accelerate the production rate from naturally producing wells – This may enable prolonged plateau production – decreased payback time – in some cases also increased overall recovery .

Followings are benefit of mutiphase boosting • Well kick-off – Wells that do not produce naturally may be kicked off by use of a subsea multiphase pump. .

.Followings are benefits of mutiphase boosting • Increased reach of remote fields/wells – Subsea multiphase pumps can be installed far away from the receiving facilities – and d thus h can b boost the h production d i f from locations that would otherwise not been within reach from the same facilities.

– The h production d i rates ate typically i ll increased i d by b several thousand barrels of oil per day. .Followings are benefits of multiphase boosting • Comparatively low investment – Payback time of the installed pump systems has typically been months rather than years.

Subsea separation can be used in combination with pressure boosting to increase production flow • There are many different ideas of subsea separation under development • VASPS (Vertical Annular Separation and Pumping System) .

Subsea separation of water and crude reinjection of the produced water .

Subsea separation of water and crude reinjection of the produced water • Method – A subsea separator is installed downstream of the wellheads to separate water The separated water is re water. . re-injected injected into a separate well by a means of a single phase pump.

. flowlines This results in reduction of frictional pressure loss in the flowline and the reduction of back pressure in the riser.Subsea separation of water and crude reinjection of the produced water • Effect – Removing water from the oil reduces the specific gravity of the fluid in the flowlines.

eliminating or reducing the need for topside water injection system. .Subsea separation of water and crude reinjection of the produced water • Utilisation – water that is taken out can be re-injected into a separate well and can be used as pressure support in the reservoir.

pressure • Injection of water in the well can maintain the reservoir pressure and sustain or increase the oil p production .Reduction of water in the flowline has following benefits • Reduce the risk of hydrate formation in the flowline • Reduce hydrate inhibitor requirements • Reduction of frictional loss can allow a higher flow rate of oil through a given pipeline • If the topside water capacity is reached. subsea removal of the water will reduce the static back pressure. the oil production d ti can be b increased i d • If the water content and the specific gravity increase.

.Typical applications of subsea separation are • Existing installations where the wells have started to produce more water quicker than expected and where the backpressure from the pipeline and the riser has increased due to higher oil flow and higher specific gravity of the fluid.

Typical applications of subsea separation are • Tie-in satellite fields to platforms or FPSO’s where the topside water processing capability has been reached and the lack of topside space or cost of installing additional water removal equipments requires a new approach. .

Typical applications of subsea separation are • New field developments. where the static pressure due to the long riser creates high back pressure. . flow This problem occurs in deep water well. where the well head pressure is too low to provide a natural flow. Water separation and injection may be combined with separate oil pump to boost oil flow to a remote location.

pressure boosting and subsea separation can improve the oil production • Useful in deep water exploration • With high water cut • Long tieback .In summary.

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