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SHELL NIGERIA EXPLORATION AND PRODUCTION

COMPANY Ltd.

Bonga FPSO
Plant Operating Procedures Manual
Volume 2D
FLOW ASSURANCE GUIDELINES

OPRMOPRM-20032003-0302D
Version: 1.1

This document is confidential.


The Copyright of this document is vested in Shell Nigeria Exploration and
Production Company Limited. All rights reserved. Neither the whole nor
any part of this document may be reproduced, stored in any retrieval
system or transmitted in any form or by any means (electronic,
mechanical, reprographic, recording or otherwise) without the prior
written consent of the copyright owner.

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PURPOSE
The purpose of this document is to provide guidance on the safe, efficient
and environmentally aware operation of the Subsea Facilities, Flowlines and
Risers.
It is one Volume within an overall suite of Volumes, which comprise the
Bonga FPSO Plant Operating Procedures Manual (POPM). The full listing of
Volumes is as follows:
Volume 1
Volume 2A
Volume 2B
Volume 2C
Volume 2D
Volume 3
Volume 4
Volume 5
Volume 6
Volume 7
Volume 8
Volume 9
Volume 10
Volume 11
Volume 12
Volume 13
Volume 14
Volume 15
Volume 16
Volume 17
Volume 18
Volume 19
Volume 20
Volume 21
Volume 22
Volume 23
Volume 24
Volume 25
Volume 26
Volume 27
Volume 28
Volume 29
Volume 30
Volume 31
Volume 32
Volume 33
Volume 34
Volume 35

OPRM-2003-0302D

Field and Facilities Overview


Subsea Production System
Subsea Waterflood System
Subsea Control System
Flow Assurance Guidelines
Oil Separation and Treatment
Oil Storage, Handling and Ballast Systems
Oil Metering and Export System
Vapour Recovery Compression System
Field Gas Compression System
Gas Dehydration/Glycol Regeneration Systems
Gas Export/Import/Lift Systems
Flare and Vent Systems
Produced Water Treatment Systems
Waterflood System
Chemical Injection and Methanol Injection System
Fuel Gas System
Heating Medium System
Drainage Systems
Sewage Treatment Systems
Bilge and Oily Water Separation Systems
Inert Gas System
Nitrogen Generation System
Seawater System
Fresh and Potable Water Systems
Diesel Fuel System and Incinerator
Aviation Fuel System
Instrument and Utility Air System
Deck Hydraulic Systems
Fire Protection Systems and Equipment
Safety and Lifesaving Equipment
PSCS and ESS
Power Generation and Distribution Systems
Black Start Procedures
HVAC Systems
Deck Machinery and Mechanical Handling Systems (Cranes, etc)
Telecommunications
Ancillary Living Quarters (ALQ)

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SCOPE
This document provides detailed reports and studies carried out to provide
guidelines for the safe operation of the Bonga subsea facilities. The studies
also include step-by-step guidance on the operation of the system under
both normal and abnormal operation.

4.0

TARGET
TARGET READERSHIP
All SNEPCO staff who may be involved in the operation of the Subsea
Systems onboard the Bonga FPSO.

5.0

SPECIAL NOTE
Not applicable.

6.0

DEFINITIONS AND ABBREVIATIONS


The definitions and abbreviations used within this document are listed at the
end of these introductory pages.

7.0

REFERENCE INFORMATION/SUPPORTING DOCUMENTATION


The primary reference/supporting documents, which have been either used
or referred to in the development of this document, are listed at the end of
these introductory pages. These are part of the available Operational
Documentation, which SNEPCO Offshore Operations (OO) has in place to
support its day-to-day operations. These and many other documents are
available within the SNEPCO Livelink System. Where appropriate, these
documents have been cross-referenced within this document.

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Definitions and Abbreviations


Definitions
Arrival
Temperature

Flowing temperature of the fluids at the FPSO boarding valve.

Backpressure

Pressure on back of valve against which equalising pressure


is applied to reduce differential

Blowdown

Action performed to depressurise the flowline, designed to reduce


the maximum flowline pressure and thus reduce the risk of
hydrates at ambient conditions (4C) in the event of an extended
shutdown.

Bubble Point

The bubble point is the pressure at which gas first comes out of
hydrocarbon liquid phase for a given temperature.

Cloud Point

The cloud point is the temperature at which wax crystals begin to


precipitate in the fluid. This is commonly taken to be the
temperature for the onset of wax deposition, also called the Wax
Appearance Temperature.

Cold Earth
Start

Start-up in which the wellbore, wellbore fluids and all subsea


equipment are initially at ambient temperature.

Equalising
Pressure

Pressure applied to equalise pressure across the valve (ideally this


should be greater than the downstream pressure).

Forward
Pressure

Pressure on front of valve prior to equalising pressure


being applied.

Gas Void
Fraction

Technically defined as the ratio of the gas volume to the flowline


volume, but it is more appropriately defined as the minimum gas
volume required to achieve a successful flowline blowdown.

Hot Oiling

Precirculating heated dry hydrocarbons or diesel around a flowline


loop to warm the flowlines and manifold prior to a cold well startup.

Hydrate
Dissociation/
Formation
Temperature

The temperature at a given pressure above which hydrates will not


form or the temperature at a given pressure below which hydrates
will form.

No-touch
Time

The period of time following a shut-in during which the equipment


is allowed to cool and production may be restarted without the
need to inhibit the system.

Pour Point

The pour point of a petroleum fluid is the lowest temperature at


which the fluid ceases to flow when brought to the temperature
under specified conditions.

Safe Condition

The condition at which the subsea system has attained the desired
temperature required to achieve minimum cooldown time.

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Safe Condition
Temperature

The temperature at which any section of the subsea system has the
minimum specified cooldown time (8 hours for wellbore and 12
hours for the rest of the subsea system).

Safe Condition
Time

The time taken to reach safe condition temperature.

Warm-up
Time

The time that it takes the systems to reach a temperature


sufficient to give the desired number of hours of cool down.

Abbreviations
API
ASTM

American Petroleum Institute


American Society for Testing and Materials

Ba
BaSO4
BIST
BLPD
BoD
BOOR
BS&W
BSET

Barium
Baryte
Bonga Integrated Studies Team
Barrels Liquid Per Day
Basis of Design
Bonga Oil Offloading Riser
Base Sediment and Water
Bonga Systems Engineering Team

CaCO3
CIV
CPM
CWDT

Calcite
Chemical Injection Valve
Cross-polar Microscopy
Critical Wax Deposition Temperature

DTI

Department of Trade and Industry

EPIC
ESDV

Engineer, Procure, Install and Construct


Emergency Shutdown Valve

FAST
FDP
FEAST
FPSO
FPT
FWHP
FWHT

Flow Assurance Sub-team, Houston


Field Development Plan
Fluids Evaluation and Stability Testing
Floating Production, Storage and Offloading
Field Planning Tool
Flowing Wellhead Pressure
Flowing Wellhead Temperature

GLIV
GLR
GoM
GOR

Gas Lift Injection Valve


Gas Lift Riser
Gulf of Mexico
Gas/Oil Ratio

HDP
HDT
HRGC
HS&E
HSE
HTGC

Hydrate Dissociation Pressure


Hydrate Dissociation Temperature
High Resolution Gas Chromatography
Health, Safety and Environment
Health and Safety Executive
High Temperature Gas Chromatography

ID
ITT

Inside Diameter
Invitation to Tender

KHI

Kinetic Hydrate Inhibitor

LDHI
LP

Low Dosage Hydrate Inhibitor


Low Pressure

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MBLPD
MBOPD
MBWPD
MEG
MeOH
MIV
MMBO
MoC
MPT

Thousand Barrels Liquid Per Day


Thousand Barrels Oil Per Day
Thousand Barrels Water Per Day
Monoethylene Glycol
Methanol
Methanol Injection Valve
Million Barrels Oil
Management of Change
Model Pipeline Test

NORM
NLNG

Naturally Occurring Radioactive Material


Nigerian Liquefied Natural Gas

OD
OGGS
OPEX

Outside Diameter
Offshore Gas Gathering Plant
Operating Expenditure

PFL
PID
PIP
PIV
PM
PMV
POPM
POV
PP
PPD
PSDV
psia
PU
PVT
PWV

Production Flowline
Proportional Integral Derivative
Pipe-in-pipe
Pigging Isolation Valve
Production Manifold
Production Master Valve
Plant Operating Procedures Manual
Ported Orifice Valve
Pour Point
Pour Point Depressant
Pipeline Shutdown Valve
Pounds Per Square Inch Absolute
Polyurethane
Pressure/Volume/Temperature
Production Wing Valve

SBHP
SC
SCF
SCSSV
SIEP
SITP
SOI
SPM
SRTCA
SSSV
STB
SWV

Shut-in Bottomhole Pressure


Safe Condition
Standard Cubic Feet
Surface Controlled Subsea Safety Valve
Shell International Petroleum Maatschappij
Shut-in Tubing Pressure
Shell Offshore Incorporated (SEPCo)
Single Point Mooring
Shell Research and Technology Center, Amsterdam
Subsurface Safety Valve
Stock Tank Barrels
Sacrificial Wing Valve

TEG
THF

Triethylene Glycol
Tetrahydrofuran

UTH

Umbilical Termination Header

VIT

Vacuum Insulated Tubing

WHP

Wellhead Pressure

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WSV
WTC

Well Switching Valve


Westhollow Technology Center

XOV

Crossover Valve

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Reference Information/Supporting Documentation


(1)

Bendiksen, KH, Malnes, D, Moe, R and Nuland, S (1991), The Dynamic Twofluid Model OLGA: Theory and Application , Soc of Petro Engr, May 1991,
Page 171.

(2)

Ellison, BT and Kushner, DS (1998) Subsea Oil Production System Design and
Operations Methodology. Shell TIR (BTC-3534).

(3)

Granherne (1998) Bonga


(7471-BON-TN-C-00037).

(4)

Granherne (1999) Riser Gas-lift System: Option Review and Recommendation


(7471-BON-TN-U-00062).

(5)

Mehta, A (1998) E-mail communication to BSET Team.

(6)

Wasden, FK (1995) Mars Phase I Subsea Flowline Thermal Design Study. Shell
TPR (BTC 9-95).

(7)

Ratulowski, J et al 1999 Asphaltene Stability, Waxy Fluid Properties and Wax


Deposition Potential of Crude Oils from the Bonga Prospect, Nigeria.

(8)

Schoppa, W, Wilkens, RJ and Zabaras, GJ (1998), Simulation of Subsea Flowline


Transient Operations. Facilities 2000 Proceedings, New Orleans, October 2627.

(9)

Van Gisbergen, S (1999) Email communication to BSET Team.

Major:

Technical

Note

Flow

Assurance

(10) Zabaras, GJ (1987) A New Vertical Two-phase Gas-liquid Flow Model for
Predicting Pressure Profiles in Gas-lift Wells. Shell TPR (WRC 223-87).
(11) Westrich, JT, Predicting Wax-related Fluid Properties Away from Well Control
at Bonga, Report number SIEP.99.6096, August 1999.
(12) Ratulowski, J, G Broze, J Hudson, N Utech, P O Neal, J Couch and
J Nimmons. Asphaltene Stability, Waxy Fluid Properties and Wax Deposition
Potential of Crude Oils from the Bonga Prospect, Nigeria. SEPTCo, Houston,
March 1999.
(13) Broze, G, N Utech, P O Neal and J Nimmons, Summary Report: Waxy Fluid
Properties of Crude Oil from the B1 well, 803 Sand of the Bonga Prospect,
Nigeria. SEPTAR, Houston, July 1999.
(14) Bonga Integrated Studies Team. SDS-SNEPCo Bonga Joint Venture, Integrated
Development Plan, Field Development Plan, Rev 5, December 2001.
(15) Schoppa, W, Flow Assurance Constraints for Bonga Production Forecasting:
Wrap-up. SGSUS, May 2002.
(16) Schoppa, W and A Kaczmarski, Bonga Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis
Evaluation of Conceptual Design. SGSUS, Technical Progress Report, February
2001.
(17)
Stankiewicz, Artur, Matt Flannery, Pat O Neal, Nancy Utech and George
Broze, Asphaltene Stability and Wax Properties of the Crude Oil from the OPL
212 Prospect, Well W6, Bonga, Nigeria, SGSUS, October 2001.

OPRM-2003-0302D

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(18) George Broze, Bonga Oil Offloading Riser Wax Deposition. Memo to Ram
Gopalkrishnan of SDS, September 2000.
(19) Steve C Tsai, George Broze and Sabi Balkanyi, Bonga Production Flowline Wax
Assessment. Shell Global Solutions, Houston, Texas, March 2003.
(20) Bonga Oil Offloading Risers Conceptual Designs Summary (SD 991080).
Revision R1, September 1999.
(21) Pigging of Pipelines, State-of-the-Art, EP 95-2580, SIEP, The Hague, 1995.
(22) SOI Deepwater Flowline Pigging Guidelines (similar to the guidelines for pigging
section in the DEP 31.40.00.10 report).
(23) Bonga System-wide Functionality Review in Amsterdam (Nov 2001) and email
communications from H Duhon and A Kaczmarski.
(24) Tsai, A, Broze, G and S Balkanyi, Bonga Production Flowline Wax Assessment.
Shell Global Solutions, April 2003.
(25) Westrich, JT, Predicting Wax-related Fluid Properties Away from Well Control at
Bonga, Report No SIEP.99.6096, August 1999.

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Main Table of Contents

Document Status Information


Definitions and Abbreviations
Reference Information/Supporting
Information/Supporting Documentation
Section 1

Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

Section 2

Flow Assurance Production Constraints

Section 3

Hydrate Remediation Guidelines

Section 4

Production Flowline Wax Assessment

Section 5

Offloading Riser Wax Assessment

Section 6

Pour Point Depressant Risk Assessment

Section 7

Scale Review

Section 8

RiskRisk-based Evaluation of Scaling Tendencies for the


Subsea System

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Section 1
Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

Table of Contents
1.0

2.0

3.0

4.0

5.0

6.0

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY...............................................................................................5
1.1

Hardware Design ...............................................................................................5

1.2

Operational Procedures .....................................................................................5

ITEM OVERVIEW AND SPECIFICATIONS ..................................................................6


2.1

Introduction........................................................................................................6

2.2

Reservoir Fluid...................................................................................................7

2.3

Wellbore Characteristics ....................................................................................7

2.4

Subsea Flowline Details.....................................................................................9

2.5

Operating Conditions and Constraints..............................................................10

2.6

Objectives........................................................................................................10

2.7

Computational Approach..................................................................................11

COLD WELL START-UP: HYDRATE PREVENTION STRATEGIES .........................18


3.1

Cold Earth Well Start-up ..................................................................................18

3.2

Well Safe Condition Analysis ...........................................................................20

3.3

Flowline Hot-oiling............................................................................................21

STEADY-STATE PRODUCTION ................................................................................26


4.1

Steady-state Thermal Performance: Wellbore and Flowline.............................26

4.2

Terrain-induced (Severe) Slugging ..................................................................27

4.3

Riser Gas Lift: Thermal Considerations............................................................30

4.4

Umbilical-based Design ...................................................................................31

4.5

Large-bore Riser Design..................................................................................31

SUBSEA SYSTEM SHUTDOWN: HYDRATE PREVENTION STRATEGIES .............41


5.1

Cooldown Performance of Subsea Facilities ....................................................41

5.2

Flowline Blowdown ..........................................................................................44

5.3

Gas Lift-assisted Blowdown .............................................................................45

CONCLUDING REMARKS AND PRELIMINARY OPERATING LOGIC .....................60

Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

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Table of Contents (contd)


TABLES
Table 1.1 Riser Gas Lift Requirements for Terrain Slug Suppression ................................29
Table 1.2 Cooldown Time as a Function of PU Foam Thickness
Within Pipe-in-pipe Flowlines ...........................................................................43
FIGURES
Figure 1.1 Production Forecast for Bonga Phase I Development (refer to Bonga Basis
of Design).........................................................................................................13
Figure 1.2 Bonga Subsea Field Layout..............................................................................14
Figure 1.3 Bonga Production Well Design, Used for All Thermal-hydraulic Analysis..........15
Figure 1.4 Production Flowline Topography for (a) 10in West-side Flowlines, and (b)
12in East-side Flowlines....................................................................................16
Figure 1.5 Insulation Systems for 10in and 12in Pipe-in-pipe Flowlines (Left Panel),
and Steel Catenary Risers (Right Panel) ...........................................................17
Figure 1.6 Definition of Well Start-up Terminology.............................................................22
Figure 1.7 Wellhead Warm-up Time to HDT, for Cold Earth Start-up of the Fields
Coldest Well (702p7) at 0% Watercut................................................................22
Figure 1.8 Treatable Liquid Rate for 18gpm MeOH Injection (Mehta, 1999) ......................23
Figure 1.9 Well Warm-up Time of 702p7: Dependence on Water Cut ...............................23
Figure 1.10 Safe Condition Time for 8-hour Wellbore Cooldown .......................................24
Figure 1.11 Influence of Watercut on Well Safe Condition Time for 702p7 ........................24
Figure 1.12 Safe Condition Time for 12-hour Cooldown of Tree/Jumper/Manifold,
Based on Time for Wellhead Temperature to Reach 120F............................25
Figure 1.13 Hot-oiling Performance: Return Temperature for 50MBOPD Circulation
of 150F Source Oil ........................................................................................25
Figure 1.14 Flowing Wellhead Temperatures Calculated for Initial-life Wells and
the Fields Coldest Well (702p7) with 0% Water Cut.......................................33
Figure 1.15 Arrival Temperatures Calculated for All Initial-life Wells with 0% Water Cut....33
Figure 1.16 Cumulative Arrival Temperature for Initial-life Well Production, Relative
to the 98F Arrival Temperature Constraint for Waste Heat Capacity .............34
Figure 1.17 Influence of Riser Gas Lift on Riser Froude Number, as a Means to
Eliminate Riser Instability and Terrain Slugging Shown for the 12in
East-side Risers .............................................................................................34
Figure 1.18 Riser Base Gas Lift Required for Complete Suppression of Terrain
Slugging for 10in West-side Flowlines ............................................................35
Figure 1.19 Riser Base Gas Lift Required for Complete Suppression of Terrain
Slugging for 10in East-side Flowlines .............................................................35

Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

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Table of Contents (contd)


FIGURES
Figure 1.20 Riser Base Gas Lift Required to Limit Terrain Slugging to Within 50bbl
Slugs for 12in East-side Flowlines ..................................................................36
Figure 1.21 Slug Volumes Calculated for 12in East-side Flowlines and 50% Water Cut
as a Function of Gas Lift Rate ........................................................................36
Figure 1.22 Separator Level Fluctuation Calculated for 12in East-side Flowlines
and 50% Water Cut as a Function of Gas Lift Rate.........................................37
Figure 1.23 Effect of Cold (40F) Gas Lift Injection on Arrival Temperature for
10MBOPD Production and 25MMscfd Gas Lift for Slug Suppression .............37
Figure 1.24 Gas Injection Temperatures at Mudline for Prior Umbilical-based
Gas Lift Design...............................................................................................38
Figure 1.25 Dependence of Gas Injection Temperature on Gas Lift Riser Diameter for
an Insulating Value of U = 4W/m2-C ...............................................................38
Figure 1.26 Dependence of Gas Injection Temperature on Gas Lift Riser Insulating
Value for a 3.5in Tube Diameter .....................................................................39
Figure 1.27 System Temperature Summary for Base-case Flexible Riser-based
Gas Lift Design...............................................................................................40
Figure 1.28 Definition of Contributions to Cooldown Time .................................................46
Figure 1.29 Downtime Duration Statistics for Unplanned Shutdowns in GoM ....................47
Figure 1.30 Wellbore Cooldown at Wellhead for Hottest and Coldest 702 Wells ...............47
Figure 1.31 East-side 12in Riser Cooldown Performance for (a) 2in Carazite and (b)
4in Carazite ....................................................................................................48
Figure 1.32 West-side 10in Riser Cooldown Performance for (a) 2in Carazite and (b)
4in Carazite ....................................................................................................49
Figure 1.33 Pipe-in-pipe Cooldown for East-side 12in Flowlines .......................................50
Figure 1.34 Pipe-in-pipe Cooldown for East-side 10in Flowlines .......................................50
Figure 1.35 Pipe-in-pipe Cooldown for 10in West-side Flowlines ......................................51
Figure 1.36 Illustration of Non-unique Relationship Between U Value and Cooldown........51
Figure 1.37 Blowdown Performance: 10in West-side and Full Line-pack...........................52
Figure 1.38 Blowdown Performance: 10in West-side and Immediate Choke Closure........53
Figure 1.39 Blowdown Performance: 12in East-side and Full Line-pack............................54
Figure 1.40 Blowdown Performance: 12in East-side and Immediate Choke Closure.........55
Figure 1.41 Blowdown Performance for 50% Watercut, Illustrating Unsuccessful
Blowdown for All Scenarios ............................................................................56
Figure 1.42 Blowdown Performance with Riser Gas Lift Assist, for 12in
East-side Flowlines.........................................................................................57
Figure 1.43 Blowdown Performance with Riser Gas Lift Assist, for 10in
East-side Flowlines.........................................................................................58

Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

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Table of Contents (contd)


FIGURES
Figure 1.44 Pressure and Temperature Evolution During Cold Gas
Lift-assisted Blowdown ...................................................................................59
Figure 1.45 Benefit of Depressurisation for Unsuccessful Blowdown in Providing
24 Hours of Additional Cooldown Time...........................................................60
Figure 1.46 Cold Start-up ..................................................................................................61
Figure 1.47 Additional Well Start-up ..................................................................................62
Figure 1.48 Interrupted Start-up ........................................................................................63
Figure 1.49 Planned or Unplanned Shutdown from Steady-state ......................................64
Figure 1.50 Blowdown .......................................................................................................65
APPENDICES
Appendix 1A Reservoir Fluid Properties ............................................................................66
Appendix 1B Wellbore Modelling Summary and Production Forecast ...............................71
Appendix 1C Production Flowlines: Topography and Ambient Temperature Data .............79

Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

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EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
Using validated analytical and computational techniques, the dynamic thermalhydraulic performance of the Bonga conceptual subsea system is evaluated with
regard to Shell guidelines for flow assurance in deepwater applications,
with particular focus on hydrate management. Through simulation of worst-case
(albeit realistic) operational scenarios, the principal objective of this work is to
ensure a robust design of the Bonga subsea system, to enable efficient,
hydrate-free operations. Analysis presented herein validates the Bonga conceptual
design with respect to hydrate management, upon implementation of the following
modifications to hardware design and operational procedures.

1.1

1.2

Hardware Design

Replacement of gas lift umbilical with flexible riser and addition of gas lift
heating (MoC 16)

Increase of carazite riser insulation thickness from 2in to 4in

Increase of polyurethane foam thickness in pipe-in-pipe flowlines from 0.6in


to 1.0in

Inclusion of cooldown in riser/flowline thermal performance specifications


(MoC 59)

Replacement of 2in topsides blowdown valve with two-stage valve train with
large orifice

Added capability to isolate individual flowlines for dry-oil circulation

Added riser base pressure/temperature sensors (MoC 64)

Operational Procedures

Identified need for well tubing Methanol (MeOH) bullheading for cold-earth
start-up

Developed separate well start-up procedures for low and high watercut

Revealed that slug control not required for west-side flowlines, above 10MBLPD

Identified that well MeOH bullheading to Subsurface Safety Valve (SSSV)


required only for long shut-ins (> 2 days)

Revealed that blowdown unsuccessful for watercuts 50% and higher

Illustrated that success of gas lift assist blowdown is not guaranteed

Developed dual strategy for lengthy shutdowns: primary blowdown and


secondary oil circulation

Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

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2.0

ITEM OVERVIEW AND SPECIFICATIONS

2.1

Introduction
Bonga is a deepwater Nigerian oil prospect in Block OPL 212 in 1000m water depth,
operated by Shell Nigeria Exploration and Production Company Limited in a joint
venture with Esso (20%), Elf (12.5%) and Agip (12.5%). Bonga will be developed as
a subsea network, with 1.9 to 9.2km tiebacks to a permanently moored Floating
Production, Storage and Offloading vessel (FPSO). Anticipated peak production
rates are 225MBOPD oil, 170MMscfd gas (including recycled riser gas lift) and
100MBWPD produced water (refer to production function in Figure 1.1). Reservoir
pressure will be maintained via 16 subsea waterflood wells with a 300MBWPD total
water injection capacity. Produced oil will be stored on the FPSO (2MMBO storage
capacity) for tanker offloading, while Bonga gas will be exported 90km via a 16in
pipeline to Riser Platform A of the Offshore Gas Gathering System (OGGS), which
feeds the Bonny Nigerian Liquefied Natural Gas Plant (NLNG) plant.
The initial phase Bonga Field layout (refer to Figure 1.2) consists of four reservoirs
(690, 702, 710/740, 803; roughly one half of reserves within 702) and 20 subsea
production wells. Production wells contain a subsea tree (enabling surface
controlled isolation valves, production choke and chemical injection valves)
connected via short well jumpers to five subsea production manifolds. The subsea
wells are produced through four pairs of piggable dual flowlines (three 10in pairs
and one 12in pair), with pipe-in-pipe flowlines and externally insulated steel catenary
risers. Each flowline is connected to a dedicated gas lift riser delivering up to
25MMscfd riser base gas lift. Riser base gas lift is critical for several Bonga
operations, enabling:

Riser unloading during start-up and blowdown

Severe slug suppression

Production enhancement

As a subsea production system of unprecedented complexity in a new deepwater


operating environment, Bonga entails several key flow assurance and systems
engineering challenges. Additionally, unlike typical Shell Deepwater Gulf of Mexico
(GoM) projects, independent EPIC (Engineer, Procure, Install and Construct)
Contractors are responsible for the detailed design, construction and installation
of all Bonga facilities. However, Shell has chosen to retain ownership of flow
assurance via design specifications in each EPIC contract, based on flow assurance
analysis performed in-house within the Bonga Systems Engineering Team (BSET).
Thus, the completeness of in-house analysis and the communication of results with
(and among) contractors (facilitated by BSET) are key success factors for Bonga.
The principal objective of this report is to validate the Bonga conceptual design with
respect to Shell Deepwater Flow Assurance Guidelines (Ellison and Kushner, 1998),
and to outline the Management of Change (MoC) identified by this analysis.

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Reservoir Fluid
The fluid composition and properties for each Bonga reservoir (690, 702, 710/740
and 803) are summarised in Appendix 1A Table 1A.1. The reservoir fluids exhibit
the following variability in properties:

Bubble point at reservoir temperature (145 to 190F) = 3335 to 5015psia

Stock tank oil gravity = 29 to 33 API

Gas/oil ratio = 550 to 1200 SCF/STB (single-stage flash)

Unless otherwise noted, simulations here are based on compositional


Pressure/Volume/Temperature (PVT) models tuned to match the properties of the
dominant 702 reservoir. All transient simulations in OLGA are based on the phase
diagram shown in Figure 1.46, calculated for the 702 reservoir fluid. For purposes of
analysis, the oil gravity and gas: oil ratio (not to be confused with the gas:liquid ratio)
are relatively constant over the field life at 600SCF/STB. Based on the production
forecast (refer to Figure 1.1), watercuts of 0%, 50%, and 80% are assumed for
early, mid and late-life scenarios, respectively.
Hydrate dissociation curves (pressure (HDP) vs temperature (HDT)) for the 702
and 803 fluids are presented in Appendix A, calculated using MULTIFLASH
(Mehta, 1998). The expected salinity is that of the seawater (due to significant
waterflood), ie approximately 3wt % salt. As a result of this low salinity, compared to
the typical 15% salinity of subsea GoM fields, hydrate management for Bonga is
particularly challenging (ie HDT approximately 10F higher). For conservatism,
the hydrate dissociation conditions of the 803 fluid with 0% salinity (refer to
Figure 1.48) are used as a worst-case for all flowline analysis in this report. At the
minimum seabed temperature (40F), this translates to a blowdown target pressure
of HDP = 150psia. For subsea facilities (tree, well jumper and manifold) a target
hydrate temperature of HDT = 74F is used for the 702 wells considered here,
corresponding to the maximum design shut-in pressure (4600psia).

2.3

Wellbore Characteristics
The November 1999 well design basis (Appendix 1B) indicates the following range
of wellbore parameters:

702 Wells

Water depth = 990 to 1105m

Measured depth = 1770 to 2315m below mud line

True vertical depth = 1360 to 1730m below mud line

Tubing = 4.89in ID x 5.5in OD or 5.92in ID x 6.625in OD: bare tubing

Reservoir pressure (average) = 2520 to 4200psia

Reservoir temperature = 128 to 162F

Productivity index (average) = 20 to 110BLPD/psia

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690 Wells

Water depth = 990 to 1105m

Measured depth = 2010 to 2875m below mud line

True vertical depth = 1500 to 1770m below mud line

Tubing = 4.89in ID x 5.5in OD or 5.92in ID x 6.625in OD: bare tubing

Reservoir pressure (average) = 3140 to 4585psia

Reservoir temperature = 138 to 164F

Productivity index (average) = 7 to 14 BLPD/psia

710 Wells

Water depth = 1000 to 1030m

Measured depth = 1770 to 1965m below mud line

True vertical depth = 1485 to 1760m below mud line

Tubing = 5.92in ID x 6.625in OD: bare tubing

Reservoir pressure (average) = 4240 to 4650psia

Reservoir temperature = 134 to 158F

Productivity index (average) = 6 to 27BLPD/psia

803 Wells

Water depth = 990 to 1030m

Measured depth = 2140 to 2570m below mud line

True vertical depth = 2030 to 2165m below mud line

Tubing = 5.92in ID x 6.625in OD: bare tubing

Reservoir pressure (average) = 5210 to 5300psia

Reservoir temperature = 178 to 186F

Productivity index (average) = 10 to 12BLPD/psia

For conceptual design evaluation, we focus here on wells 702p7 (coldest) and
702p4 (hottest), which represent the flowing wellhead temperature extremes for the
dominant 702 reservoir.
Note: Results here effectively bracket the thermal-hydraulic performance of all
producing wells, which will be analysed individually as part of future detailed
design and operability analysis.

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The well casing and annulus fluid design summarised in Figure 1.3 (from Van
Gisbergen, 1999) is used for all transient and steady-state thermal wellbore
analysis. A linear geothermal temperature gradient (from mid-perfs to mudline)
is specified for the ambient formation temperature. The well specifications analysed
herein are summarised as follows:

2.4

702p7 (coldest)

Measured depth = 1870m below mud line

True vertical depth = 1380m below mud line

Tubing = 4.89in ID x 5.5in OD: bare tubing

Reservoir pressure = 3200psia (early life) to 2200psia (late life)

Reservoir temperature = 128F

Productivity index (average) = 30BLPD/psia

Watercut = 0% (early life) to 80% (late life)

702p4 (hottest)

Measured depth = 2280m below mudline

True vertical depth = 1760m below mud line

Tubing = 5.92in ID x 6.625in OD: bare tubing

Reservoir pressure = 4800psia (early life) to 3600psia (late life)

Reservoir temperature = 162F

Productivity index (average) = 80BLPD/psia

Watercut = 0% (early life) to 80% (late life)

Subsea Flowline Details


The conceptual design evaluation presented here is based on the 10in west side
and 12in east side flowline topographies (refer to Figure 1.4), which capture the
essential terrain features on either side of the FPSO.
Note: The significant difference in offset distance between the East (3.9 and 5.8
miles) and West (1.2 and 1.5 miles) flowlines (refer to Appendix 1C).
The riser gas lift injection is located 1150m horizontal distance upstream from the
FPSO, at the flowline/riser connection (refer to Figure 1.4). In Appendix 1C, further
flowline details are summarised, including individual flowline topographies, the
catenary riser profile and profiles of (ambient) sea temperature and current.
With reference to the field layout in Figure 1.2, all production flowlines are of 10in
nominal diameter, with the exception of the 12in east side flowlines PFL 3/4/5/6
(the East-East flowline). As illustrated in Figure 1.5, pipe-in-pipe insulation is
used for all production flowlines, with an insulating value of UOD=2.0 W/m2-C
(0.352 Btu/hr-ft2-F) or better.
Note: In Figure 1.5, U values as low as 1.4W/m2-C can be attained by filling the
entire annulus space with foam (as recommended here based on cooldown
considerations).
Based on both steady-state and cooldown performance, a 4in carazite
(or equivalent) insulation has been specified for all production risers (refer to
Figure 1.5).

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Operating Conditions and Constraints


As a tieback comprised of numerous subsea wells and flowlines, Bonga entails
several key flow assurance constraints on system design and operation, including:

12-hour minimum cooldown time for flowline and riser

8-hour minimum cooldown time for wellbore, subsea tree, well jumper and
manifold

Target minimum turndown rate of 10MBLPD per well and per flowline

Target blowdown pressure of 145psia

Minimum boarding temperature of 98F (@ maximum production)

Maximum boarding temperature of 153F

Separator pressure = (300, 150, 150) psia for (early, mid, late) field life

In addition to general Shell subsea operating guidelines:

2.6

Operation outside of stable hydrate region at all times, with chemical inhibition
otherwise

No wax deposition in the wellbore

Objectives
The principal objective of this report is to evaluate the conceptual design of the
Bonga subsea system with respect to flow assurance, topsides and subsea system
constraints, and operability. The main focus here is on hydrate prevention during all
expected operating scenarios; detailed wax and asphaltene analysis appears
separately in Ratulowski et al, 1999. In particular, detailed thermal hydraulic
multiphase flow simulations (described in Paragraph 2.7) are used to analyse the
following critical flow assurance issues:

Well cold start-up

Well safe condition time

Steady-state flowing wellhead temperature

Well cooldown

Steady-state arrival temperature

Flowline cooldown

Flowline blowdown

Riser gas lift requirements:

Slug suppression

Riser unloading

Injection temperature

For limitations identified in the conceptual design, possible design improvements are
suggested and evaluated. Preliminary operating logic charts, consistent with this
conceptual design analysis, are also developed.

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2.7

Computational Approach

2.7.1

Steady-state and Transient Wellbore


For all wellbore analysis, the WELLTEMP software developed by ENERTECH
is used. WELLTEMP fully models wellbore flow using Shell two-phase flow models,
and both conductive and convective heat transfer in casing annuli are explicitly
modelled. Heat transfer in the surrounding formation (eg 50ft radius) is simulated
directly using finite-difference methods, coupled to finite-volume (ie conservation
form) representations of multiphase flow in the well tubing and heat transfer in
the casing strings. Refined wellbore pressure modelling is performed using the
Shell NEWPRS software, which is also based on the Shell GZM two-phase flow
model (described below) and allows bubble point specification.

2.7.2

Steady-state Flowline
The process simulation software HYSYS, marketed by HYPROTECH, is used for
steady-state predictions of thermal-hydraulic multiphase flow in the Angus flowlines.
Extensive testing has shown that HYSYS PVT thermodynamic modelling is
superior to other marketed packages, and the Shell GZM two-phase flow model
(Zabaras, 1987) is incorporated into HYSYS for proprietary use by Shell. The GZM
model uses Taitel and Dukler phase transition criteria, combined with empirical
correlations for interphase friction, entrainment, holdup and wall-wetted fraction.

2.7.3

Flowline/Riser Cooldown
Flowline cooldown results are obtained with the Shell COOLDOWN software
(Wasden, 1995), which solves the full transient heat conduction equation for
axisymmetric, radial heat transfer, including multiple insulation layers. Axial heat
conduction within the fluid and pipe are neglected, since axial temperature gradients
(ie heat fluxes) are generally orders of magnitude smaller than radial gradients.
Average thermophysical properties of the fluid are obtained with HYSYS, and
selected cases are validated using full transient thermal-fluid simulations (OLGA).

2.7.4

Transient Flowline
To model time-dependent two-phase flow in the subsea flowlines, the OLGA
software marketed by SCANDPOWER is used. OLGA solves a set of six coupled
first-order, non-linear, one-dimensional partial differential equations: three continuity
equations (gas, liquid film and liquid droplets), two momentum equations (liquid film,
and a combined gas and liquid droplet field) and a mixture energy equation.
For numerical solution, a staggered mesh finite difference method is used for spatial
discretisation, with semi-implicit time stepping. The momentum equations are
mechanistic in nature, requiring correlations of friction factor, wetted perimeter,
entrainment, and deposition, along with flow regime specification based on a
minimum-slip concept (ie regime with minimum slip velocity chosen). Although the
total fluid composition is constant within a given pipeline branch, the liquid and gas
compositions (thus, liquid and gas physical properties) can change continuously,
eg during a flash.

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Transient mass transfer between phases is modelled using a Taylor-series


expansion of the equilibrium gas mass fraction in terms of pressure and
temperature. Non-equilibrium gas fractions (eg gas pockets above the bubble point
in shut-in wellbores) may be specified as initial conditions and will subsequently vary
according to the mass transfer rate. Simulations fully account for important elements
such as flowline topography, multi-layered pipe insulations (including wellbore
casings), heat storage in pipe walls and buried earth, and time-dependent valve
openings, boundary conditions, and source flowrates, among others. Additionally,
the proximity of instantaneous pressure and temperature values to hydrate
dissociation conditions can be tracked both in space and time. For further details of
the OLGA modelling approach and transient flow assurance applications, refer to
Bendiksen et al (1991) and Schoppa et al (1998).

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Figure 1.1 Production Forecast for Bonga Phase I Development


(refer to Bonga Basis of Design)

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Figure 1.2 Bonga Subsea Field Layout

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0.50
psi/ft
water-based

0.54 psi/ft
oil-based

0.52
brine

psi/ft

Figure 1.3 Bonga Production Well Design,


Used for All Thermal-hydraulic Analysis

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-200

Elevation (m)

-400

-600

-800
Gas Lift

-1000
-1100
0

500

1500

1000

2000

2500

Length (m)

0
-100
-200
-300

Elevation (m)

-400
-500
-600
-700
-800
Gas Lift
-900
-1000
-1100
0

1000

2000

3000

4000

5000

6000

7000

8000

Length (m)
OPRM20030302D_001.ai

Figure 1.4 Production Flowline Topography for (a) 10in West-side Flowlines
and (b) 12in East-side Flowlines

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10in Production Flowline

10in Production Riser


10.75in OD x 1.0in Steel

Flowline 10.75in OD x
0.937in Steel
PU Foam

4in Carazite
(or equivalent)

Air Gap
14in OD x 0.563in Steel

12in Production Flowline

12in Production Riser


12.75in OD x
1.063in Steel

12.75in OD x
1.126in Steel

PU Foam

Air Gap

4in Carazite
(or equivalent)

16in OD x 0.625in Steel


OPRM20030302A_011.ai

Figure 1.5 Insulation Systems for 10in and 12in Pipe-in-pipe Flowlines (Left Panel),
and Steel Catenary Risers (Right Panel)

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COLD WELL START-UP: HYDRATE PREVENTION STRATEGIES


For flow assurance in the subsea wells, the hottest (702p4 horizontal) and coldest
(702p7 conventional) 702 wells (described in Paragraph 2.3 and Appendix 1B)
are evaluated with regard to: (i) cold-earth start-up, (ii) safe condition requirements
and cooldown performance, and (iii) steady-state flowing wellhead temperature.
All wellbore thermal analysis is performed using WELLTEMP, for the casing designs
in Figure 1.3 and a linear geothermal temperature profile, from the reservoir
temperature to 40F at the wellhead. Production rates over the range 2.5 to
40MBLPD are considered for early, mid, and late-life conditions (0%, 50%, 80%
watercut). A sample WELLTEMP input file, summaries of simulation cases and
results appear in Appendix 1B Tables 1B.1 to 1B.5.
For wellbore transients, the relevant terminology illustrated in Figure 1.6 is defined
as follows:

3.1

Cold Earth Start-up Well start-up in which the wellbore, tree and well jumper
are initially at ambient temperature

Well Warm-up Time Elapsed time upon start-up required for the Flowing
Wellhead Temperature (FWHT) to exceed HDT (HDT = 74F at well shut-in
pressure)

Safe Condition (SC) Temperature FWHT which must be reached after start-up
such that 8 hours of cooldown time is available

Safe Condition Time Elapsed time upon start-up for safe condition
temperature to be reached

Cold Earth Well Start-up


A critical aspect of well flow assurance for Bonga is cold earth well start-up, in
which the wellbore and surrounding formation are at ambient (geothermal)
temperature, either at initial start-up or after an extended shut-in (ie longer than
1 week). In contrast to the common use of Vacuum Insulated Tubing (VIT) to
provide fast warm-up of deeper subsea wells in the GoM, bare tubing is used for all
Bonga wells. Although the relatively shallow depth of the Bonga wells makes bare
tubing viable, careful evaluation is required of the relative hydrate risk at start-up.
As a worst case, the start-up of the coldest well (702p7) is considered first for early
life conditions. As shown in Figure 1.7, the well warm-up time to HDT = 74F is
moderately lengthy, particularly at low start-up rates.
Note: Although rapid well ramp-ups are anticipated for Bonga (eg 10MBLPD within
1/2 hour), a more moderate start-up rate (eg 5MBPLD average) is analysed
as a design case.
At a start-up rate of 5MBLPD, the wellhead region is temporarily in the hydrate
region for 80 minutes (refer to Figure 1.7).
Note: As a general guideline, based on operating experience and preliminary
hydrate kinetics research (which must be used carefully), a hydrate exposure
longer than 60 minutes with greater than 10F, subcooling is considered an
unacceptable risk for subsea wells (with significant cost of intervention/
remediation).

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As a possible operational solution, bullheading of MeOH into the entire wellbore


prior to start-up significantly reduces the hydrate risk, as reflected by the MeOH
residence time (time required for one well pass) in Figure 1.7 (eg hydrate exposure
time reduced from 80 minutes to 40 minutes at 5MBLPD).
Notes:
(1)

Although the current well and subsea system design permit bullheading
of MeOH past the SSV, it is undesirable to expose the bottomhole hardware to
MeOH. Thus, precise operating and MeOH monitoring procedures will be
required for whole-well bullheading.

(2)

The MeOH volumes required: 150bbl for 4.9in ID well tubing and 250bbl for
5.9in ID.

In summary, the well warm-up times for cold earth start-up do pose a hydrate
concern, but the risk is relatively small at expected start-up rates and can be
reduced significantly by whole-well MeOH bullheading, if necessary (yielding hydrate
exposure times comparable to currently operating GoM subsea wells).
The decision whether to bullhead MeOH into the entire wellbore or only to the SSSV
will be made on a well-by-well basis, as a part of ongoing operability and hydrate
kinetics analysis (conducted in-house).
In summary, the wellbore hydrate exposure times for each bullheading option are:

0% watercut:
Bullheading Option

Hydrate Exposure (5MBLPD)

No MeOH in well

80 minutes

MeOH to SSSV (50 to 75bbl)

65 minutes

MeOH to perfs (150 to 250bbl)

40 minutes

50% watercut:
Bullheading Option

Hydrate Exposure (5MBLPD)

No MeOH in well

50 minutes

MeOH to SSSV (50 to 75bbl)

35 minutes

MeOH to perfs (150 to 250bbl)

10 minutes

At higher watercuts, an additional issue that arises is the maximum start-up rate
for which the resulting water production is treatable by MeOH delivery capacity
(ie 18gpm per subsea tree). That is, whereas faster well start-up is desirable from a
wellbore hydrate viewpoint (refer to Figure 1.7), at significant watercuts (50 to 80%),
the MeOH rate becomes insufficient to protect the tree and well jumper.
The treatable liquid rate at 18gpm MeOH injection is illustrated in Figure 1.8 as a
function of watercut (based on MULTIFLASH calculations, Mehta, 1999). For the
anticipated average start-up rate of 5MBLPD, Figure 1.8 indicates a watercut limit of
~20% for sufficient MeOH protection of the tree and jumper.

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At 50 to 80% watercut, an MeOH injection rate of 54 to 90gpm would be required,


which is infeasible from an umbilical delivery viewpoint (leading also to significant
MeOH production contamination). Thus, an additional factor to be considered during
future operability analysis is whether or not to constrain start-up rates at high
watercut, to protect the tree and jumper at the expense of the wellbore.
Preliminary operability analysis suggests a possible dual start-up strategy:
(1) Low watercut (below 20%): constrained start-up rate to yield MeOH-treatable
(at 18gpm) water rates, with full hydrate protection of the tree and jumper.
(2) High watercut (above 20%): unconstrained (fast) start-up rate (ie limited only to
prevent well/reservoir impairment) to outrun the finite time hydrate kinetics in
the wellbore, tree and jumper.
Note: For the fortunate result in Figure 1.9, the well warm-up time to HDT is much
faster at higher watercut (due to higher heat capacity of water), which
reduces the relative hydrate risk of the high watercut strategy.
Further development and testing of low dosage hydrate inhibitors will also be
undertaken to further reduce the hydrate risk in the tree and jumper, for watercuts
up to 80% and subcoolings up to 30F (Mehta, 2001).

3.2

Well Safe Condition Analysis


The concept of a well safe condition is motivated by the risk of hydrate formation in
the wellbore in the event of an aborted start-up. In this way, operations staff can
determine whether immediate MeOH treatment is required in the event of an
aborted start-up. Before well safe condition has been reached during a well start-up,
immediate operator action (eg well bullheading) is required before safe condition
(without any no-touch time), in contrast to the full 8-hour cooldown period available
after safe condition.
Note: The SC definitions are based on 8 hours of required cooldown time for the
wellbore, tree and well jumper (eg 3 hours no-touch time + 5 hours MeOH
treatment time).
During well start-up, hydrate inhibition via MeOH injection at the tree is generally
recommended until the SC time is reached (Ellison and Kushner, 1998).
Note: If MeOH usage/storage is a concern, special operating guidelines may be
developed to treat until 5 hours of cooldown are available (the MeOH
treatment time), or even only to the (shorter) warm-up time to HDT.
These less conservative procedures are based on the idea that in an aborted
start-up of a single well, no-touch time is unnecessary and only the well being
started must be treated immediately. For Bonga, the condition for termination of
MeOH injection at the tree will be determined as part of future operability analysis.
For the coldest (702p7) and hottest (702p4) 702 wells, and early-life conditions,
the wellbore SC times are shown in Figure 1.10 as a function of the average rate
during start-up. For a moderate start-up rate of 5MBOPD, these results bracket the
SC times for all 702 wells to between 5 to 10 hours, translating to 130 to 260bbls
MeOH volume per well, for an 18gpm injection rate. At higher watercuts (eg greater
than 50%), the SC time is significantly reduced (ie faster warm-up due to higher heat
capacity of water), as illustrated in Figure 1.11 for the 702p7 well.

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The corresponding SC analysis for the tree and well jumper is based on the
specification (for the subsea contractor) that these components must provide at
least 12 hours of cooldown from 120F to 73F.
Note: This tree/jumper cooldown period is longer than the 8-hour cooldown allotted
to the well tubing, to allow an additional operational margin for the field
complexity of Bonga.
The SC temperature for the tree and well jumper is 120F, for which the
corresponding SC time is shown in Figure 1.12.
Note: The steady-state FWHT for well 702p7 does not reach 120F, so its SC
temperature in Figure 1.12 is modified to 110F for purposes of comparison
(an exception for 702p7 to be accounted for in operability analysis).
Owing to the rather lengthy tree/jumper SC times (eg greater than 10 hours at
5MBOPD), operating procedures for less than 12 hours of cooldown (ie more
immediate action upon aborted start-up) may be necessary in lieu of MeOH injection
until the tree/jumper SC time is reached.
Note: For treatment until a 12-hour SC, production at higher watercuts would have
to be constrained for several hours to maintain a MeOH-treatable water rate,
with the additional cost of deferred production.

3.3

Flowline Hot-oiling
Flowline preheating via hot-oiling is an effective means to prevent hydrate risk in the
flowlines during cold start-up. Topsides hot-oiling facilities provide two oil circulation
pumps capable of delivering 50MBOPD each, with heating of the (dry) supply oil
to 150F. The maximum oil supply pressures, based on 5mph circulation of an
initially ambient flowline, are calculated as 520psia for the west-side flowlines
and 770psia for the east-side flowlines (for a 250psia flowline outlet pressure).
In Figure 1.13, the hot-oiling performance is shown for 50MBOPD circulation of
150F source oil. For the west-side flowlines, a return temperature of 140F is
attained in 3 hours, with 130F reached in 7 hours for the east-side flowlines.
Preliminary start-up analysis indicates that hot-oiling provides at least 6 hours of
cooldown (reaction) time in the event of an aborted start-up, provided that a steady
state is established within 8 hours after hot-oiling.

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Wellhead Temperature (F)

120
SC Temperature
100

80
HDT
Warm-up Time

60

SC Time

40
0

10

12

14

Time (hours)
OPRM20030302D_002.ai

Figure 1.6 Definition of Well Start-up Terminology

300
Time for one well pass
Time to HDT
Time After Start-up (minutes)

250

200

Hydrate
Exposure Time

150

Wellbore Outside
Hydrate Region

100

50

0
0

2000

4000

6000

8000

10,000

Average Start-up Rate (BLPD)


OPRM20030302D_003.ai

Figure 1.7 Wellhead Warm-up Time to HDT, for Cold Earth Start-up of the
Fields Coldest Well (702p7) at 0% Watercut

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Treatable Liquid Rate (oil + water) (BLPD)

10,000

8000

6000

4000

2000

0
0

20

40

60

80

100

Watercut (%)
OPRM20030302D_004.ai

Figure 1.8 Treatable Liquid Rate for 18gpm MeOH Injection (Mehta, 1999)
240

Time to Reach HDT (minutes)

Time for one well pass


50% wc
0%wc
180

120
Wellbore Outside
Hydrate Region
60

0
0

2000

4000

6000

8000

10,000

Average Start-up Rate (BLPD)


OPRM20030302D_005.ai

Figure 1.9 Well Warm-up Time of 702p7: Dependence on Water Cut

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12
702p4 horiz
702p7

SC Time (hours):
Guarantee 8-hour Cooldown

10

0
4

10

12

14

16

Average Start-up Rate (MBOPD)


OPRM20030302D_006.ai

Figure 1.10 Safe Condition Time for 8-hour Wellbore Cooldown


(refer to Figure 1.6 for definition)

25
50% wc
0% wc
Well SC Time (hours):
Guarantee 8-hour Cooldown

20

15

10

0
0

5000

10,000

15,000

20,000

Average Start-up Rate (BLPD)


OPRM20030302D_007.ai

Figure 1.11 Influence of Water Cut on Well Safe Condition Time for 702p7

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20

SC Time (hours):
Guarantee 8-hour Cooldown

702p7
702p4 horiz
15

10

0
0

10

15

20

25

30

Average Start-up Rate (MBOPD)


OPRM20030302D_008.ai

Figure 1.12 Safe Condition Time for 12-hour Cooldown of Tree/Jumper/Manifold,


Based on Time for Wellhead Temperature to Reach 120F

160
West
Arrival Temperature (F)

140
East
120

100

80

60

40
0

10

Time (hours)
OPRM20030302D_009.ai

Figure 1.13 Hot-oiling Performance: Return Temperature for 50MBOPD


Circulation of 150F Source Oil

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STEADY-STATE PRODUCTION
Steady-state system modelling typically focuses on the hydraulic capacity of the
well/flowline system in delivery of the production forecast, which for Bonga has been
addressed extensively using PIPESIM (refer to Granherne, 1998; Hartwik and
Lindsey, 2000). Additionally, several key aspects of flow assurance are linked to
steady-state system performance, including:

4.1

Arrival temperatures in relation to topsides oil heating capacity

Riser base temperatures governing available flowline/riser cooldown time

Slugging

Production fluid cooling by riser base gas lift

Steady-state Thermal Performance: Wellbore and Flowline


Since prior wellbore analysis (Granherne, 1998) has been based on the
approximation of constant U value for the wellbore (ie U=2.0Btu/hr-ft2-F), the more
rigorous thermal modelling in WELLTEMP is used here to obtain refined FWHT
predictions. The range of FHWT predicted for the six initial-life production wells is
shown in Figure 1.14, along with 702p7, the fields coldest well (which fortunately
produces through the short-offset West flowline PFL11). At the minimum well
production rate of 10MBLPD specified in the Basis of Design (BoD), the FWHT lies
in the range 115 to 165F. The lower end of this FWHT range is noticeably colder
than that typical of (deeper) GoM subsea oil wells, which should be accounted for in
building upon GoM subsea operating experience.
Note: Production rates lower than 10MBLPD (eg as low as 5MBLPD) are also
operable from a thermal point of view, although well stability must also be
accounted for in specifying the minimum turndown rate.
Later in field life, the FWHT increases slightly for all flowrates (eg by 5F for 80%
watercut), due to the enhanced thermal heat capacity of water (which may be offset
to some degree by reservoir cooling due to waterflood).
With regard to the thermal performance of the coupled well/flowline system, there
are three key constraints which govern the minimum operable arrival temperature
for steady-state production:

Flowline operation outside of hydrate regime: arrival T > 60F

Minimum 12-hour cooldown of riser/flowline: arrival T > 90F

Sufficient topsides oil temperature for available waste heat capacity at high
production rates (~200MBOPD): arrival T > 98F

In Figure 1.15, the arrival temperatures for the six initial-life wells/flowlines are
shown as a function of production rate.
Note: Each initial-life well produces through a dedicated flowline, with an initially
inactive West flowline pair PFL8/9.
For all pipe-in-pipe flowlines, an overall heat transfer co-efficient of Uod = 2W/m2-C is
used, corresponding to a polyurethane foam thickness of ~0.6in (leaving ~0.4in of
air gap, refer to Figure 1.4).

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Note: Cooldown requirements will likely require an entirely foam-filled gap


(ie MoC 59, discussed in Paragraph 5.1), for which the arrival temperatures
will be slightly higher than those reported here (particularly at low production
rates).
The 12-hour cooldown constraint (detailed analysis presented in Paragraph 5.1)
translates to a minimum turndown production rate of approximately 10MBOPD for
the four east-side flowlines. Although slightly lower production rates may be possible
for special operations which are manageable with less than 12 hours of cooldown,
production rates less than 5MBOPD are inoperable due to onset of flowing
conditions in the hydrate regime. With regard to the topsides heat requirement at
high production rates, the cumulative oil temperature for all six initial-life
wells/flowlines (with equal production from each; refer to Figure 1.16) indicates that
the 98F constraint is met even at turndown conditions (ie >50MBOPD), with a 20F
margin in arrival temperature at flowrates greater than 150MBOPD. Thus, the
available topsides waste heat for oil heating is not of concern at initial field life,
which serves as the worst case since oil production will subsequently decrease
(accompanied by increasing water production).

4.2

Terrain-induced (Severe) Slugging


The phenomenon of severe slugging induced by undulations in flowline terrain is
predicted to be significant at Bonga in the absence of mitigating control, due to:

Significant downhill flow near the riser base for


(~30m elevation drop, refer to Figure 1.49)

Production of high watercuts (80 to 90%)

Large diameter flowlines (10in to 12in)

Significant water depth (~1000m)

east-side flowlines

Note: The distinction between shorter hydrodynamic slugs (up to ~50 diameters in
length) in locally horizontal or uphill flow and longer terrain slugs (proportional
to the length of downhill flow), which are more problematic for topsides
facilities and process control.
That terrain slugging is outside the scope of steady-state simulations, which
cannot capture at all the adverse effects of higher well backpressure and
order-of-magnitude fluctuations in liquid production rate. In the following,
Olga2000 is used to define the terrain slugging operability envelope,
including detailed assessment of slug suppression via riser gas lift.
For terrain slugging to occur in a flowline/riser system, three necessary conditions
must be satisfied simultaneously (Vreenegoor, 1999):
(1) The Pots slugging number less than order unity in the flowline:

ss =

zRT m& g
< O(1)
Lg m& l

(2) The densimetric Froude number less than order unity in the riser:

Fr = U sg

g
( l g ) gD

< O(1)

(3) Stratified flow pattern in the riser base region of the flowline.
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Physically, the slugging number condition:

Reflects the fact that sufficient gas compressibility (capacitance) is required for
slugs not to be expelled from the flowline. The Froude number condition

Indicates that unstable riser flow (ie liquid surging and fallback in the riser)
is necessary to initiate a flow blockage at the riser base

Enables growth of the liquid slug

For representative Bonga conditions at 10MBLPD and 50% watercut, the slugging
numbers for each flowline are:
East 12in: ss = 0.3
East 10in: ss = 0.2
West 10in: ss = 0.7
Furthermore, the Froude number (without gas lift) is on the order of 0.05
and stratified flow is predominant in the downhill flow regions near the riser base.
Thus, based on this simple conceptual analysis, severe terrain slugging is predicted
at Bonga without riser gas lift, particularly for the east-side flowlines.
Although it has not yet been field-proven for large-diameter deepwater risers,
a potentially effective slug control technique involves gas injection at or near the
riser base. With reference to the necessary conditions for terrain slugging, gas lift
can eliminate the riser instability required for slug initiation (ie Froude number
greater than order unity). For the 12in east Bonga flowline, riser gas lift increases
the Froude number from order 0.05 to order 1 (refer to Figure 1.17), and hence
is expected to be effective in slug suppression. In the following, Olga2000
computations are used to investigate in detail the effectiveness of riser gas lift in
suppressing terrain slugging.
In Figures 1.18 to 1.20, the gas lift required to suppress terrain slugging is shown as
a function of liquid production rate. In Olga2000, terrain slugging can be isolated
from smaller, less problematic hydrodynamic slugs (ie by switching Slugtracking off),
to yield a sharp transition from terrain to hydrodynamic slugging. For all west-side
10in flowlines (refer to Figure 1.18), no riser gas lift is required at the minimum
turndown rate of 10MBLPD, even at 80% watercut. This result is in contrast to prior
studies (Granherne, 1998), which indicated that 5MMscfd gas lift was required,
apparently due to inaccurate modelling of the riser-base topography.
Note: Slugging may be suppressed at turndown rates as low as 5MBLPD,
by gas lift rates up to 10MMscfd (refer to Figure 1.18).
For the 10in east-side flowlines, 5 to 10MMscfd gas lift is required to eliminate
slugging for the minimum rate of 10MBLPD at 0 to 80% watercut (refer to
Figure 1.19). Due to the more adverse east-side topography, the gas lift requirement
for flowrates lower than 10MBLPD is much more significant for the 10in east
flowlines, compared to the 10in west results. Thus, even at the gas lift capacity of
25MMscfd per flowline, signficant slugging will occur for the east-side flowlines for
turndown rates lower than approximately 8MBLPD (refer to Figure 1.19).

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For the 12in east flowlines, terrain slugging cannot be totally eliminated by feasible
riser gas lift rates. Hence, for these 12in flowlines, the gas lift required to reduce the
terrain slug size to <50bbl is shown in Figure 1.20. Due to the larger diameter, the
gas lift requirements are more stringent compared to the 10in east-side results.
In particular, gas lift approaching 20MMscfd is required at the minimum rate of
10MBLPD and 80% watercut (refer to Figure 1.20). In addition, marginal gas lift
volumes are needed at higher production rates as well (eg ~5MMscfd at 20MBLPD),
suggesting that gas lift (albeit at varying rates) may be frequently required for the
12in east flowlines, even very early in field life. The required gas lift volumes at the
minimum anticipated turndown rate of 10MBLPD are summarised for all flowlines in
Table 1.1.

Watercut

Minimum Stable
Production Without
Gas Lift

Gas Lift
Required for
10MBLPD
Production

10in West

0%

10MBLPD

PFL 8/9

50%

10MBLPD

PFL 11/12

80%

10MBLPD

10in East

0%

30MBLPD

5MMscfd

PFL 1/2

50%

35MBLPD

8MMscfd

80%

35MBLPD

10MMscfd

12in East

0%

30MBLPD

10MMscfd

PFL 3/4/5/6

50%

35MBLPD

17MMscfd

80%

40MBLPD

17MMscfd

Flowline

Note: The requirements for the 12in east flowline are based on a maximum slug
volume of 50bbl, while results for other flowlines reflect complete terrain slug
suppression.
Table 1.1 Riser Gas Lift Requirements for Terrain Slug Suppression
To address severe slugging and the mitigating effect of riser gas lift in greater detail,
an Olga Slugtracking Analysis was performed for the 12in east flowline, which
exhibits the worst-case slugging (refer to Table 1.1). The Olga Slugtracking model
captures the accumulation at the riser base of smaller hydrodynamic slugs
generated in the flowline, which may enhance terrain slugging. Additionally,
the effect of slugging on topsides vessel level control is modelled as an inlet
separator attached to the flowline outlet, with the following specifications (in accord
with the Bonga topsides conceptual design):

132in diameter x 50ft seam-seam inlet separator (reflecting one of two available
separators)

75MBLPD oil dump capacity (qualitative surge capacity for oil train)

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Oil dump valve Proportional Integral Derivative (PID) controller:

Gain = 10

Integral const = 60 s (fast-acting level control)

For the 12in east flowline at 50% watercut, significant slug volumes on the order of
800bbl are predicted at turndown rates of 10 to 20MBLPD in the absence of
riser gas lift (refer to Figure 1.21). As a consequence of these large slug volumes
(without gas lift), separator level fluctuations of 10 to 20% occur at 10 to 20MBLPD
(refer to Figure 1.22), magnitudes considered by Bonga topsides engineers to be
unacceptably large for efficient separation and overall process control. Riser gas lift
is seen to be particularly effective in reducing the slug volume, as manageable slug
volumes of 50 to 100bbl and separator level fluctuations of 2 to 3% are attained with
only 10MMscfd gas lift (Figures 1.21 and 1.22).
Note: There is no benefit of gas lift rates higher than 10MMscfd, due to smaller
(~50bbl) hydrodynamic slugs generated in the flowline and accelerated
through the riser.
In summary, modest gas lift rates on the order of 10MMscfd per flowline are
predicted to manage severe slugging at Bonga to an acceptable degree, for a
minimum turndown rate of 10MBLPD. Nevertheless, it is important to apply a
significant design margin to these results, noting the modelling complexity and lack
of field data for riser gas lift in deepwater systems. In particular, further experimental
studies are clearly needed for gas lift in large-diameter risers, to confirm the
effectiveness of gas lift in lifting riser liquid during flowing conditions
(ie extending recent experimental analysis of gas lifting of a static liquid column;
Zabaras and Schoppa, 2001). Additionally, the resonance of multiphase flow in the
flowline with topsides process flows (shown to intensify severe slugging in recent
industry publications) is a detailed design issue beyond the scope of this report.
Such coupling of subsea/topsides flows is the subject of extensive ongoing dynamic
simulation work for Bonga (Duhon and Schoppa, 2001).

4.3

Riser Gas lift: Thermal Considerations


Continuous riser base gas lift will be used during steady-state production for two
expected operational scenarios:

Slug suppression at turndown rates (particularly for the east-side flowlines)

Production enhancement at high watercut (eg as high as 80 to 90% at late life)

Thus, the thermal impact of (potentially cold) gas lift injection at the riser base is
considered here in detail, with respect to available riser cooldown time and arrival
temperature. The thermal limitations of a prior umbilical-based gas lift design are
outlined, and an improved large-bore design is presented (ie MoC 16).
In prior conceptual analysis (Granherne, 1998), it was incorrectly assumed that the
injected gas would have negligible influence on the production fluid temperature.
For example, for a gas lift injection rate of 25MMscfd (for terrain slug suppression)
and 10MBLPD production, cold gas injected at 40F reduces the production fluid
temperature by 20F throughout the riser (ie see temperature drop at gas lift location
in Figure 1.23).

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With reference to Figure 1.15, such a 20F temperature drop would significantly
reduce available design margins in arrival temperature, with respect to waste-heat
capacity and especially riser cooldown. For instance, to maintain 12 hours of
available cooldown time, the minimum flowline turndown rate would have to be
increased to 15 to 20MBLPD (refer to Figure 1.15). In turn, such a reduction in the
subsea operability envelope would obviously have a detrimental impact on the
overall production system availability.
As shown in Figure 1.23, the reduction in fluid temperature by gas lift can be limited
to 5F by increasing the gas-injection temperature at the mudline to 90F. In the
following, we analyse the effectiveness of such gas lift heating for two system
designs:

4.4

Umbilicals with multiple small-diameter tubes

Integrated risers with a single large bore, dedicated to each flowline

Umbilical-based Design
In a prior conceptual design (Granherne, 1999), the base-case design for gas lift
consisted of four umbilicals connected to each flowline pair, containing 6 x 1.5in
tubes for gas lift (ie three tubes dedicated to each flowline). The umbilical would
contain no external insulation, other than its outer sheath, with an overall heat
transfer coefficient estimated on the order of 10W/m2-C. Due to umbilical material
constraints, the inlet umbilical temperature could not exceed 140F.
Under typical operating conditions, the gas lift source will be at the gas-export
pressure of 2320psia (upstream of the topsides gas lift choke), with a production
riser base pressure of approximately 400psia. In Figure 1.24, the gas injection
temperature (at mudline) is shown for a gas flowrate of 6.7MMscfd per tube,
corresponding to a total gas lift rate of 20MMscfd for 3 x 1.5in tubes per flowline.
Interestingly, topsides heating of the gas lift stream to 140F (maximum at the
umbilical inlet) is of little benefit, as the gas-injection temperature is approximately
50F for expected umbilical U values (U~10W/m2-C).
Note: Even with improved umbilical insulation, the gas injection temperature target
of 90F cannot be met.
As indicated by results for a perfectly insulated tube (ie 60F injection at U = 0),
the cold injection temperatures observed result from significant Joule-Thomson
cooling. Due to their relatively small size, each umbilical tube exhibits a significant
pressure drop at higher rates, resulting in choke-like cooling. Due to manufacturing
limitations, the hydraulic capacity of this six-tube umbilical design could not be
significantly increased to reduce this choking effect (Granherne, 1999). In light of the
severe thermal implications (refer to Figure 1.23) of the 40 to 50F gas lift
temperatures observed with the umbilical design, an alternative design was deemed
necessary in order to provide a 90F injection temperature.

4.5

Large-bore Riser Design


In response to the unacceptable degree of Joule-Thomson gas cooling revealed
above for the umbilical design, an alternative design was developed, consisting of
eight large-bore risers (ie one gas lift line per production riser) with integrated
electric-hydraulic service lines and methanol injection tubes. The principal
advantage of this design from a flow assurance perspective is the capability for a
larger hydraulic capacity (ie larger flow area) to reduce the Joule-Thomson gas
cooling.

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The thermal performance of the large-bore gas lift design is evaluated below with
respect to the following constraints:

Minimum injection temperature for 5 to 25MMscfd gas lift > 90F

Inlet temperature to gas lift riser (downstream of topsides choke) < 160F

Gas heater temperature (upstream of topsides choke) < 200F

As illustrated in Figure 1.12, for a 25MMscfd gas lift rate, the riser diameter strongly
influences the gas injection temperature, as a 3.5in riser produces a 15F higher
injection temperature compared to a 3in riser. This is due to the fact that for smaller
diameters, less topsides choking is required (more pressure drop in riser) and the
gas heater temperature must be reduced to satisfy the 160F riser inlet temperature
constraint. At the minimum gas lift rate of 5MMscfd, the riser insulation dominates
the thermal performance, for which an insulating value of approximately
U = 4W/m2-C is needed to attain the 90F injection target (refer to Figure 1.26).
This U value corresponds to a 2.5in carazite insulation thickness (or equivalent)
applied externally to the gas lift riser.
In summary, the recommended design parameters, serving as a base case to be
optimised during detailed design, are a 3.5in ID central gas lift pipe with an effective
U value of 4W/m2-C. As illustrated in Figure 1.27, this large-bore riser design
satisfies all requirements for gas lift, providing a gas injection temperature of at least
90F over the entire range of gas rates. In this design, topsides heating of the
gas lift stream is an effective approach to prevent a significant gas lift cooling
penalty on arrival temperature and riser cooldown. This analysis culminated in the
preparation and acceptance of MoC 16, which specified the gas lift heating
requirements and large-bore riser design described above.

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702p15/PF11

180
Flowing Wellhead Temperature (F)

803p1/PF12
170

702p4/PF1
690p1/PF2

160

702p9/PF3
702p10/PF6

150

702p7/PF11
140
130
120
110
0

10

15

20

25

30

35

40

Rate (MBOPD)
OPRM20030302D_010.ai

Figure 1.14 Flowing Wellhead Temperatures Calculated for Initial-life Wells and the
Fields Coldest Well (702p7) with 0% Water Cut

Arrival Temperature per Flowline (F)

160
702p15/PF11
803p1/PF12

140

702p4/PF1
690p1/PF2
120

702p9/PF3
702p10/PF6

100

80

60
0

10

20

30

40

50

60

Rate (MBOPD)
OPRM20030302D_011.ai

Figure 1.15 Arrival Temperatures Calculated for All Initial-life Wells


with 0% Water Cut

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130

Bulk Arrival Temperature (F)

120

110

100

90

80

70
0

50

100

150

200

250

Cumulative Rate (MBOPD)


OPRM20030302D_012.ai

Figure 1.16 Cumulative Arrival Temperature for Initial-life Well Production,


Relative to the 98F Arrival Temperature Constraint for Waste Heat Capacity

Froude#

FR < 0(1): Riser instability


and possible slugging

0.1

0.01
0

10

15

20

25

30

35

Riser Gas Lift (MMSCFD)


OPRM20030302D_013.ai

Figure 1.17 Influence of Riser Gas lift on Riser Froude Number, as a Means to
Eliminate Riser Instability and Terrain Slugging Shown for the 12in East-side Risers

Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

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20

Required Gas Lift (MMSCFD)

0%wc
50%wc
15

80%wc

10

0
0

10

20

30

40

Liquid Production Rate (MBLPD)


OPRM20030302D_014.ai

Figure 1.18 Riser Base Gas Lift Required for Complete Suppression of
Terrain Slugging for 10in West-side Flowlines

40

Required Gas Lift (MMSCFD)

0%wc
50%wc
30

80%wc

20

10

0
0

10

20

30

40

Liquid Production Rate (MBLPD)


OPRM20030302D_015.ai

Figure 1.19 Riser Base Gas Lift Required for Complete Suppression of
Terrain Slugging for 10in East-side Flowlines

Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

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30
0%wc
Required Gas Lift (MMSCFD)

50%wc
80%wc
20

10

0
0

10

20

30

40

Liquid Production Rate (MBLPD)


OPRM20030302D_016.ai

Figure 1.20 Riser Base Gas Lift Required to Limit Terrain Slugging to
Within 50bbl Slugs for 12in East-side Flowlines

800

Maximum Slug Volume (bbl)

10MBLPD
20MBLPD

600

40MBLPD

400

200

0
0

10

15

20

25

Gas Lift Rate (MMSCFD)


OPRM20030302D_017.ai

Figure 1.21 Slug Volumes Calculated for 12in East-side Flowlines and
50% Water Cut as a Function of Gas Lift Rate

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Maximum Separator Level Fluctuation (%)

20

10MBLPD
20MBLPD

15

40MBLPD

10

0
0

15

10

20

25

Gas Lift Rate (MMSCFD)


OPRM20030302D_018.ai

Figure 1.22 Separator Level Fluctuation Calculated for 12in East-side Flowlines and
50% Water Cut as a Function of Gas Lift Rate

130

120

110

100

90

80

70

60
0

1000

2000

3000

4000

5000

6000

7000

Horizontal Length (m)


OPRM20030302D_019.ai

Figure 1.23 Effect of Cold (40F) Gas Lift Injection on Arrival Temperature
for 10MBOPD Production and 25MMSCFD Gas Lift for Slug Suppression

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80
Tin = 120F

Gas Injection Temperature (F)

70

Tin = 140F

60

50

40

30

20
0

10

15

20

25

Effective U of Each Umbilical Tube (W/m^2-C)


OPRM20030302D_020.ai

Figure 1.24 Gas Injection Temperatures at Mudline for


Prior Umbilical-based Gas Lift Design

Gas Injection Temperature (F)

120

115

110

105

100
2

2.5

3.5

4.5

Gas Lift Tube ID (in)


OPRM20030302D_021.ai

Figure 1.25 Dependence of Gas Injection Temperature on Gas Lift Riser Diameter
for an Insulating Value of U = 4W/m2-C

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Gas Injection Temperature (F)

100

95

90

85

80

75

70
2

Effective U (W/m^2-C)
OPRM20030302D_022.ai

Figure 1.26 Dependence of Gas Injection Temperature on


Gas Lift Riser Insulating Value for a 3.5in Tube Diameter

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From Gas Heater


Heater T

Production Riser
Riser Inlet T

Topsides
Subsea

Gas Lift Riser


3.5in ID
UID = 4W/m2-C
Injection T

Heater T (F)
Riser Inlet T (F)
Injection T (F)
220

Gas Injection Temperature (F)

200
180
160
140
120
100

Spec = 90F

80
0

10

15

20

25

30

Gas Rate (MMSCFD)


OPRM20030302D_023.ai

Figure 1.27 System Temperature Summary for Base-case Flexible


Riser-based Gas Lift Design
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SUBSEA SYSTEM SHUTDOWN: HYDRATE PREVENTION STRATEGIES


A critical aspect of hydrate management for deepwater subsea systems is
prevention of hydrate formation by system cooling during shut-ins of widely varying
duration. Operationally, subsea shut-ins are inherently complex with multiple
decision gates (particularly for a subsea network of the scope of Bonga),
with operating procedures which depend on the shutdown duration.

5.1

Cooldown Performance of Subsea Facilities


To aid Operations staff, who must simultaneously work to troubleshoot the shutdown
and to protect the subsea system from hydrates, subsea facilities must be designed
with sufficient cooldown time. In general terms, cooldown is defined as the time
required for the inner wall of the flowpath to reach the hydrate formation
temperature, somewhere in the system. The contributions to the cooldown time
anticipated for Bonga (refer to Figure 1.28) consist of:

No-touch time

Time to treat the well tubing and wellhead equipment

Time allotted for flowline blowdown

The no-touch time is defined as the time during which Operations staff can act to
rectify the shutdown cause, without having to undertake operations to protect the
subsea system from hydrates. The 3-hour no-touch time specified for Bonga is
based on GoM platform statistics for unplanned shutdowns (refer to Figure 1.29),
which indicate that 80% of typical process and instrumentation interrupts were
analysed and corrected within 3 hours. Figure 1.29 indicates a rapidly diminishing
benefit of no-touch times longer than 3 hours.
5.1.1

Well Tubing
Based on the timing illustrated in Figure 1.28, the well tubing must provide at least
8 hours of cooldown time, accounting for a well MeOH treatment time of 5 hours
(ie well tubing cooldown time > 3-hour no-touch + 5-hour MeOH well treatment).
An important benefit of bare well tubing is the lengthy wellbore cooldown provided
by thermal energy generated in the surrounding formation during (steady-state)
production. As shown in Figure 1.30, for early-life production at minimum rate
(10MBOPD), at least 48 hours of cooldown are available in the wellbore (eg 100ft
depth and below). Thus, MeOH bullheading of the well to the SSSV will be required
only for very lengthy shut-ins, ie greater than 2 days (expected to be rare).
For shorter duration shut-ins, only the top portion of the wellbore (a few hundred
feet) have to be topped with MeOH during the allotted 8-hour well cooldown time.
For these shut-ins, less than 2 days will be required and they are expected to be
much more frequent (refer to Figure 1.29). The required MeOH treatment time will
generally be less than the 5 hours allotted. As an added benefit, this surplus time due
to quicker MeOH treatment may be used to increase the no-touch time and/or the
flowline blowdown time.

Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

OPRM-2003-0302D

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5.1.2

Unrestricted

Subsea Tree/Jumper/Manifold
As for the well tubing, the subsea tree, well jumper and manifold must provide at
least 8 hours of cooldown, accounting for 5 hours allotted for MeOH displacement of
these components. Although the chemical injection system is sized to treat all wells
within 5 hours, 12 hours of cooldown time are specified for the wellhead facilities in
the Subsea ITT as an added margin to assist Operations. In particular, the following
gas cooldown specification appears in the Subsea Invitation to Tender (ITT).

Upstream of choke (subsea tree)

120F (49C) to 73F (23C) in no less than 12 hours

Downstream of choke (subsea tree + well jumper + manifold)

120F (49C) to 63F (17C) in no less than 12 hours

The starting wellhead temperature of 120F is satisfied for all initial-life wells at rates
greater than 5MBOPD (refer to Figure 1.14). However, the fields coldest well
(702p7) does not reach 120F at any rate and hence will require well-specific
operating procedures. The final temperatures reflect the HDT at the well shut-in
pressure (4600psia) upstream of the choke and the anticipated flowline shut-in
pressure downstream of the choke.
5.1.3

Flowline and Riser


For both the pipe-in-pipe flowlines and steel catenary risers, a 12-hour cooldown is
specified in the flowline/riser ITT, for gas-filled (methane) components at 28bara:

West-side 10in flowlines

97F (36C) to 66F (19C) in no less than 12 hours

East-side 10in and 12in flowlines

86F (30C) to 61F (16C) in no less than 12 hours

The work presented herein culminated in approval of MoC 59, which specifies that
both this cooldown requirement and a U value requirement of Uod 2.0W/m2-C must
be met for the cylindrical cross-sections of the flowline and riser.
Note: The more conservative specification of gas cooldown is based on restart
considerations, ie the hydrate risk of wet fluid passing through cold, originally
gas-filled sections upon restart.
The starting temperatures for cooldown are based on the minimum anticipated riser
base temperatures for 10MBOPD production, including margins for cooling by riser
gas lift and possible reservoir cooling by waterflood. With these conservative
margins, the starting riser base temperatures are comparable to the arrival
temperatures at 10MBOPD (refer to Figure 1.15). The west-side starting
temperature is 11F than the east-side flowlines due to the significantly shorter
offsets (hence lesser heat losses) of the west-side flowlines.
The final temperatures are based on the HDT at the flowline shut-in pressure, using
the hydrate dissociation conditions of the 803 fluid with 0% salinity for conservatism.
Furthermore, the effect of a 10-minute choke closure time on the flowline shut-in
pressure is explicitly accounted for. Due to their longer offsets, the east-side
flowlines experience less partial packing and hence a lower shut-in pressure, which
is why the final temperature for east-side cooldown is lower (61F for east-side
versus 66F for west-side).

Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

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For the steel catenary risers, prior conceptual analysis (Granherne, 1998)
had specified a 2in carazite insulation for (liquid-filled) cooldown. However,
Figure 1.31(a) and 1.32(a) indicate that 2in of carazite does not satisfy the gas-filled
cooldown requirement (typical for deepwater GoM), even at higher production rates.
Figures 1.31(b) and 1.32(b) demonstrate that a 4in carazite (or equivalent) riser
insulation is required to attain 12 hours of cooldown at the minimum turndown rate
of 10MBOPD per flowline. The added benefit of a Ported Orifice Valve (POV)
upstream of the choke is not accounted for, which will yield lower flowline shut-in
pressures and hence longer cooldown times (ie results closer to the immediate
choke closure curves in Figures 1.31 and 1.32). At anticipated production rates of
30 to 40MBOPD (according to the production function), 18 to 20 hours of gas
cooldown are available, providing Operations staff additional time to react and/or
secure the system against hydrates.
For the base-case pipe-in-pipe flowline design (refer to Figure 1.5), the
U = 2.0W/m2-C requirement can be met by filling only 0.6in of the ~1in annular gap
with polyurethane foam. However, the cooldown analysis presented here indicates
that the annular gap must be filled with foam (at marginal additional cost) to meet
the 12-hour gas cooldown requirement. In Figures 1.33 to 1.35, the cooldown
performance of each pipe-in-pipe flowline is shown for 0.6in (U = 2.0W/m2-C)
and 1in (foam-filled annulus) foam thicknesses. As summarised in Table 1.2,
10 to 11.5 hours of cooldown are attained with a 0.6in foam thickness. In each case,
a foam-filled annular gap (with a 5mm tolerance for manufacturing) is required to
meet the 12-hour gas cooldown specification.
In summary, this analysis reveals that the base case flowline with U = 2.0W/m2-C
(without foam filling of the annular gap) does not satisfy the 12-hour cooldown
requirement. The U value requirement is based only on steady-state thermal
performance, which does not uniquely determine the cooldown performance.
That is, significantly different cooldown performance can occur for the same
U value, depending on the thermal mass of the pipe and insulation system.
As illustrated in Figure 1.36, a carrier pipe with a 0.94in wall thickness meets the
12-hour cooldown target, while a 0.75in wall provides only 10 hours of cooldown,
although the corresponding U values are identical. The situation is complicated
further for alternative pipe diameters and wall thicknesses, which may be explored in
the detailed design process. Thus, to ensure adequate flowline/riser cooldown
performance, MoC 59 specifies that both the U value and cooldown specifications
shall be satisfied simultaneously.
East 12in

East 10in

West 10in

0.6in PU foam
(U = 2W/m2-C)

11.5 hours

10.5 hours

10 hours

1in PU foam
(foam-filled gap)

13.5 hours

13 hours

12.5 hours

Table 1.2 Cooldown Time as a Function of PU Foam Thickness


Within Pipe-in-pipe Flowlines

Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

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5.2

Unrestricted

Flowline Blowdown
With reference to Figure 1.28, for subsea shutdowns lasting longer than 8 hours,
depressurisation of producing flowlines (blowdown) must commence to secure
the continuously cooling flowline against hydrate formation. To remain within the
12-hour cooldown window (the minimum cooldown at turndown rates), all flowlines
must be blown down within approximately 4 hours (ie 12-hour cooldown 3-hour
no-touch + 5-hour well MeOH treatment + 4-hour blowdown). Due to the lengthy well
tubing cooldown, the well treatment may take only 3 to 4 hours, which will allow
5 to 6 hours of blowdown time. The precise breakdown of the available cooldown
time will be the subject of future operability analysis.
The principal objective of blowdown is to prevent hydrate formation in the flowlines,
for lengthy shut-ins. By reducing the flowline pressure to below the HDP at the
ambient seafloor temperature of 40F, the flowline will be secured against hydrate
formation for an indefinite shut-in. For conservatism, a blowdown target of
HDP = 145psia (10bara) is used throughout this analysis, based on the worst case
of 803 fluid with 0% salinity (refer to Appendix 1A Table 1A.3). This target
is ~70psia lower than the dominant 702 fluid production (with HDP~220psia),
a depressurisation margin which is necessary for successful hydrate remediation.
The flow assurance and topsides constraints on blowdown are summarised
as follows:

Maximum flowline pressure after blowdown < 145psia

Blowdown time < 4 hours (all eight flowlines)

Gas flare rate (instantaneous radiant heat capacity) < 200MMscfd

Oil carryover rate (instantaneous flare scrubber capacity) < 75MBOPD

In Figures 1.37 to 1.40, the blowdown performance for the 10in west-side and 12in
east-side flowlines is summarised in terms of pressure, gas outlet rate and liquid
carryover, for initial-life conditions at 0% watercut. Results are shown for the
following scenario, with both immediate choke closure and full line-packing
considered to bracket the full design range:
40MBOPD steady-state Shut-in (immediate or full line-pack)
3-hour cooldown Blowdown to 20psia @ topsides (0.5in to 2in
blowdown valve)
Note: The line-packing cases capture the maximum design gas and liquid rates
during blowdown, while the immediate choke closure cases reflect the typical
operating scenario.
With respect to the topsides facility constraints, none of the blowdown cases in
Figures 1.37 to 1.40 exceed the 200MMscfd gas flare capacity or the 75MBOPD oil
scrubber capacity. For the west-side flowlines, the maximum gas and liquid rates for
the worst-case line-packing scenario are 27MMscfd and 45MBOPD (refer to
Figure 1.37). For the 12in east-side flowlines, the peak rates are 40MMscfd and
70MBOPD (refer to Figure 1.39). Due to the short duration of these peak rates,
simultaneous blowdowns of multiple flowlines may be pursued, provided that each
blowdown is staggered by at least 30 minutes.

Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

OPRM-2003-0302D

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Unrestricted

For the flow assurance targets, blowdown is successful for the 10in west-side
flowlines provided that the blowdown valve size is at least 2in (Figures 1.37(a)
and 1.38(a), to enable sufficient liquid removal from the flowline. For the west
flowlines, the blowdown is completed within 1 hour. In contrast, blowdown for the
12in east-side flowline is unsuccessful for immediate choke closure (refer to
Figure 1.40(a), with a final pressure of 600psia which is well above the 145psia
target. The counterintuitive result that blowdown is successful for a line-packed
east flowline is due to the additional liquid carryover driven by the higher
shut-in pressure.
Significantly, for a 50% watercut (which will be attained early in field life), blowdown
is unsuccessful for all scenarios, as indicated in Figure 1.41. Thus, to secure
flowlines for indefinite shut-ins, alternatives to a traditional, totally passive blowdown
must be considered (eg riser gas lift assist or dry-oil circulation).

5.3

Gas Lift-assisted Blowdown


In light of the unsuccessful blowdowns predicted for the 12in east-side flowlines and
the 10in west-side flowlines at higher watercuts, the possibility of riser gas lifting to
remove riser liquid during blowdown is now considered. The specific worst-case
scenario analysed below consists of:
30MBLPD production (50% watercut) Immediate shut-in at time of
maximum riser liquid during severe slugging 3-hour cooldown Open 2in
to 10in blowdown valve (@ t = 4 hours) Inject riser gas lift pulse of
10MMscfd for 1 hour Stop gas lift 7-hour flowline/riser settle-out
Gas lift blowdown results for the 12in east-side flowlines are shown in Figure 1.42,
indicating the counter-intuitive result that riser gas lift does not guarantee blowdown
success (refer to Figure 1.42a). If the blowdown valve is not sufficiently large,
back-pressure at the flowline outlet prevents slug-like removal of riser liquid, which
instead falls back to the riser base resulting in churn-like flow. To attain pressures
below 145psia, a very rapid blowdown with a 10in valve is required, with an
associated peak liquid outlet rate of 200MBLPD (refer to Figure 1.42b). Although
this exceeds the flare scrubber capacity, any overflow will empty (by gravity feed)
into a 24,000bbl slop tank. The peak outlet gas rate of 70MMscfd is well within
the instantaneous flare capacity (200MMscfd).
Note: After gas lift ceases (@ t = 5 hours in Figure 1.42), the flowline pressure
slowly increases to approximately 170psia as liquid in the flowline and riser
settles out. Similar results are obtained for the 10in east-side flowlines (refer
to Figure 1.43), with a more effective blowdown (final pressure near 155psia)
and lesser liquid volumes resulting from a smaller riser diameter.
A potential concern for gas lift assisted blowdown is the hydrate risk of injecting
40F lift gas into the flowline, which contains wet fluids which have cooled several
hours (near the end of the 12-hour cooldown period). To address this concern,
the hydrate condition tracking feature of OLGA is applied to the following scenario:
15MBLPD production (0 to 50% watercut) Immediate shut-in 10-hour
cooldown Open blowdown valve Inject 10MMscfd gas lift @ 40F for
2 hours Stop gas lift

Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

OPRM-2003-0302D

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Unrestricted

As shown in Figure 1.44(a), the cold gas lift injection causes a local
pressure/temperature within 1F of hydrate conditions. The fact that hydrate
condition subcooling does not occur is due to the rapid riser-base depressurisation
by gas lifting (refer to Figure 1.44(c). Due to the residual heat in the flowline
liquid and pipe wall, this depressurisation outruns the gas lift cooling (refer to
Figure 1.44(b), preventing a local hydrate condition. In light of this depressurisation
effect, it is critical that the topsides blowdown valve is fully open before the
gas lifting operation commences, as a significant (~20F) subcooling of wet fluids at
the riser base will occur otherwise.
In summary, although riser gas lift can significantly reduce the flowline pressure,
several additional design and operability modifications were required to enable
hydrate-free indefinite-length shut-ins. In particular, the requirement of a large
blowdown valve orifice for effective gas lift assisted depressurisation resulted in
replacement of the prior fixed 2in blowdown valve with a two-stage blowdown valve
train containing a smaller variable choke and a large fixed orifice. Furthermore,
it was revealed that gas lift-assisted blowdown does not guarantee successful
blowdown below 145bara, due to pressure recovery resulting from liquid settle-out in
the flowline and riser. Hence, a backup strategy was formulated for more lengthy
shut-ins, consisting of flowline displacement by dry oil circulation at 3 to 5mph.
Associated topsides modifications were also made to improve the timing and control
of the dry-oil circulation operation. Additionally, a pressure/temperature sensor was
added to each riser base (at the gas-injection tee) to enable Operations to
accurately determine the effectiveness of gas lift assisted blowdown operations
(captured by MoC 64).
Since blowdown is marginally effective for the east-side 12in flowline, it is logical to
question whether a primary dry-oil circulation strategy should be used in place of
gas lift-assisted blowdown. There are two key advantages of blowdown as a primary
shut-in strategy. First, it is an essentially passive operation which can be
performed under unexpected or emergency topsides shutdowns. Secondly, even an
unsuccessful blowdown provides significant extra reaction time for trouble-shooting
and a secondary dry-oiling operation if necessary (eg blowdown to 250psia provides
24 hours of additional cooldown time; refer to Figure 1.45).
3 hours

3 to 5 hours

4 to 6 hours

No-touch

Well MeOH Treating

Blowdown

Figure 1.28 Definition of Contributions to Cooldown Time

Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

OPRM-2003-0302D

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Unrestricted

120

Percentages (%)

100
80
60
40
20
0
1

10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24
Hours
OPRM20030302D_024.ai

Figure 1.29 Downtime Duration Statistics for Unplanned Shutdowns in GoM

Minimum Wellbore Temperature (F)

150
702p4
702p7

140
130
120
110
100
90
80

HDT

70
0

10

20

30

40

50

Time After Shut-in (hours)


OPRM20030302D_025.ai

Figure 1.30 Wellbore Cooldown at Wellhead for Hottest and Coldest 702 Wells

Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

OPRM-2003-0302D

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Unrestricted

Production Rate (MBOPD)


10

20

40

14

Gas Cooldown Time (hours)

12
Target
10
8
6
4
Immediate Choke Closure
10-minute Closure

Full Line-pack
0
60

70

80

90

100

110

120

130

140

Initial Riser Base Temperature (F)

Production Rate (MBOPD)


10

20

40

30

Gas Cooldown Time (hours)

25

20

15
Target
10
Immediate Choke Closure
5

10-minute Closure
Full Line-pack

0
60

70

80

90

100

110

120

130

140

Initial Riser Base Temperature (F)


OPRM20030302D_026.ai

Figure 1.31 East-side 12in Riser Cooldown Performance for


(a) 2in Carazite and (b) 4in Carazite

Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

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Unrestricted

Production Rate (MBOPD)


5

10

20

40

16

Gas Cooldown Time (hours)

14
Target
12
10
8
6
4

Immediate Choke Closure


10-minute Closure

Full Line-pack
0
80

90

100

110

120

130

Initial Riser Base Temperature (F)

Production Rate (MBOPD)


5

10

20

40

Gas Cooldown Time (hours)

25

20

15
Target
10

Immediate Choke Closure


5

10-minute Closure
Full Line-pack

0
80

90

100

110

120

130

Initial Riser Base Temperature (F)

OPRM20030302D_027.ai

Figure 1.32 West-side 10in Riser Cooldown Performance for


(a) 2in Carazite and (b) 4in Carazite

Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

OPRM-2003-0302D

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35
U=2

30
Gas Temperature (C)

Foam-filled
25
20
15
10
5
0
0

10

12

Time (hours)
OPRM20030302D_028.ai

Figure 1.33 Pipe-in-pipe Cooldown for East-side 12in Flowlines

35
U=2

30
Gas Temperature (C)

Foam-filled
25
20
15
10
5
0
0

10

12

Time (hours)
OPRM20030302D_029.ai

Figure 1.34 Pipe-in-pipe Cooldown for East-side 10in Flowlines

Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

OPRM-2003-0302D

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Unrestricted

40
U=2

35

Gas Temperature (C)

Foam-filled
30
25
20
15
10
5
0
0

10

12

Time (hours)
OPRM20030302D_030.ai

Figure 1.35 Pipe-in-pipe Cooldown for 10in West-side Flowlines

40
Initial T = 36C

0.94in wt and U = 1.4W/m^2-K


0.75in wt and U = 1.4W/m^2-K

Gas Temperature (C)

35

30

Minimum CDT = 12 hours

25

20

15
0

10

12

Time (hours)
OPRM20030302D_031.ai

Figure 1.36 Illustration of Non-unique Relationship Between U Value and Cooldown

Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

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Maximum Flowline Pressure (psia)

Line-pack

Unrestricted

Blowdown

5150

4150

3150
1in valve
2150
0.5in valve
1150
2in valve

Target:
HDP = 145psia

10

Time (hours)
50

Outlet Oil Rate (MBOPD)

2in valve: 480bbl


40

30

20
1in valve: 360bbl
10
0.5in valve: 160bbl
0
0

10

Time (hours)
30

Outlet Gas Rate (MMSCF)

2in valve
25
20
15
1in valve
10
0.5in valve

5
0
0

10

12

Time (hours)
OPRM20030302D_033.ai

Figure 1.37 Blowdown Performance: 10in West-side and Full Line-pack


Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

OPRM-2003-0302D

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Maximum Flow Pressure (psia)

Shut-in

Unrestricted

Blowdown

950

750

550
0.5in valve
350

1in valve

Target:
HDP = 145psia

2in valve
0
0

10

10

Time (hours)

Outlet Oil Rate (MBOPD)

50

40

30

20
2in valve: 45bbl
10

0
0

Time (hours)

Outlet Gas Rate (MMSCF/D)

20

15

10
2in valve

5
1in valve
0.5in valve
0
0

10

12

Time (hours)
OPRM20030302D_032.ai

Figure 1.38 Blowdown Performance: 10in West-side and Immediate Choke Closure

Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

OPRM-2003-0302D

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Unrestricted

Line-pack Blowdown
5150

Maximum Flowline
Pressure (psia)

4150

3150
1in valve
2150
0.5in valve
1150
2in valve

Target:
HDP = 145psia

10

12

14

16

Time (hours)
70
2in valve 1360bbl
Outlet Oil Rate (MBOPD)

60
50
40
30
1in valve: 910bbl
20
0.5in valve 620bbl

10
0
0

10

Time (hours)
40
Outlet Gas Rate (MMSCF/D)

35
2in valve
30
25
20
15

1in valve

10
0.5in valve
5
0
0

10
Time (hours)

15

20

OPRM20030302D_035.ai

Figure 1.39 Blowdown Performance: 12in East-side and Full Line-pack


Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 54 of 89

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Unrestricted

Shut-in

Blowdown

Maximum Flowline
Pressure (psia)

950

750

550

350

Target:
HDP = 145psia
0

10

10

Time (hours)

Outlet Oil Rate (MBOPD)

50

40

30

20

10

0
0

Time (hours)

Outlet Gas Rate (MMSCF/D)

25

20

15

10
2in valve
5

1in valve
0.5in valve

0
0

10

15

20

Time (hours)
OPRM20030302D_034.ai

Figure 1.40 Blowdown Performance: 12in East-side and Immediate Choke Closure
Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

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1150

950

Maximum Flowline
Pressure (pisa)

West Immediate closure


West Full line-pack

750

East Full line-pack


East Immediate closure

550

350

Target:
145pisa

10

15

20

Time (hours)
OPRM20030302D_036.ai

Figure 1.41 Blowdown Performance for 50% Water Cut, Illustrating Unsuccessful
Blowdown for All Scenarios

Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

OPRM-2003-0302D

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Maximum Flowline Pressure (psia)

500
450
400

2in valve
4in valve

350

10in valve

300
250
200
150

Target HDP = 145psia


100
4

10

11

12

Time (hours)
250

Outlet Oil Rate (MBLPD)

2in valve
4in valve

200

10in valve
150

100

50

0
4

4.5

5.5

Time (hours)

Outlet Gas Rate (MMSCF/D)

70
2in valve

60

4in valve
50

10in valve

40
30
20
10
0
-10
4

4.5

5.5

Time (hours)
OPRM20030302D_037.ai

Figure 1.42 Blowdown Performance with Riser Gas Lift Assist,


for 12in East-side Flowlines

Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

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Maximum Flowline Pressure (psia)

500

2in valve
4in valve

450

8in valve

400
350
300
250
200
150

Target HDP = 145psia


100
4

10

11

12

Time (hours)
100

Outlet Oil Rate (MBLPD)

4in valve
2in valve

80

8in valve
60

40

20

0
4

4.5

5.5

Time (hours)
50

Outlet Gas Rate (MMSCF/D)

4in valve
40

2in valve
8in valve

30
20
10
0
-10
4

4.5

5.5

Time (hours)
OPRM20030302D_039.ai

Figure 1.43 Blowdown Performance with Riser Gas Lift Assist,


for 10in East-side Flowlines

Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

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Hydrate

Proximity to Hydrate Condition:


Flowline Maximum (HDT-T) (F)

0
No Hydrate

50% Water Cut

-10

0% Water Cut

-20
-30
-40
-50
Shut-in

Gas Lift On

Gas Lift Off

-60
0

10

15

20

Time After Shut-in (hours)

Temperature at Gas Lift Location (F)

120
50% Water Cut

110

0% Water Cut

100
90
80
70
60
50
40
0

10

15

20

Temperature at Gas Lift Location (psia)

Time After Shut-in (hours)


1400
50% Water Cut
1200

0% Water Cut

1000
800
600
400
200
0
0

10

15

20

Time After Shut-in (hours)


OPRM20030302D_038.ai

Figure 1.44 Pressure and Temperature Evolution During


Cold Gas Lift-assisted Blowdown

Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 59 of 89

30-April-2006

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Unrestricted

90

Riser Gas Temperature (F)

85
80
75
70
65

Shut-in HDT

60
55
HDT after
Blowdown
to 250pisa

50
45
40
0

10

15

20

25

30

35

40

45

50

55

Time (hours)
OPRM20030302D_040.ai

Figure 1.45 Benefit of Depressurisation for Unsuccessful Blowdown in


Providing 24 Hours of Additional Cooldown Time

6.0

CONCLUDING REMARKS AND PRELIMINARY OPERATING LOGIC


In summary, detailed thermal-hydraulic analysis validates the Bonga conceptual
design with respect to hydrate management, for the most extreme anticipated
operating conditions. The modifications to hardware design and operating
procedures identified have been addressed and fully implemented within the
appropriate Bonga teams. As the first step toward development of detailed subsea
operating procedures, preliminary operating logic charts, consistent with the flow
assurance analysis documented here, are shown in Figures 1.46 to 1.50 for
the following:

Cold start-up

Additional well start-up

Interrupted start-up

Planned or unplanned shutdown

Blowdown

As flow assurance efforts progress into detailed design and the development of
subsea operating procedures, further dynamic thermal-hydraulic studies are
recommended for the following areas:

Gas buy back at OGGS-RPA and Bonga for initial start-up and shutdown

Minimum operating temperature analysis for the subsea system and topsides
interfaces

Development and check-out of operating procedures via coupled well/flowline/


topsides dynamic modelling

Definition of subsea transient operability envelope for on-demand operational


decisions

Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 60 of 89

30-April-2006

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Unrestricted

Hot oil circulate 150F


hot oil at 3 to 5mph

Cold Start-up
Start-up of cold well into
blown down flowine

System Conditions

Is arrival
temperature at FPSO
> 95F?

Wells bullheaded with MeOH


Trees, jumpers and manifolds
flushed w/MeOH

No

Yes

Flowlines stabilised
(blown down or dry-oiled)
Stop hot oil circulation.
Close pigging iso valve
at manifold

Sufficient MeOH available on FPSO

Start riser base gas lift


as appropriate:
10MMSCFD 10in flowlines
20MMSCFD 20in flowlines

Start-up lowest wc well,


as per Start-up Guidelines:
Start MeOH injection
upstream choke
Open subsea choke and
start specified ramp-up

Is the
FWHT >95F?

No

Continue MeOH injection

Yes

Stop MeOH injection and


continue well ramp-up

Full system cooldown not available.


No
Shutdown requires immediate
action: Go to 'Interrupted Start-up'

FWHT >120F
and Arrival Temperature
> 85F?

5-hour wellbore
cooldown available

Steady-state operation.
Yes
For additional wells:
Go to 'Additional Well Start-up'

OPRM20030302D_041.ai

Figure 1.46 Cold Start-up

Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 61 of 89

30-April-2006

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Additional Start-up

Unrestricted

Line up subsea equipment


for new well start-up

Start-up of new (cold) well


into producing flowline

System Conditions

Adjust riser base gas lift


as appropriate for new well

Cold well bullheaded with MeOH


Cold tree and jumper
flushed w/MeOH
Start-up new well,
as per Start-up Guidelines:

Flowline producing at steady-state:


Arrival T > 85F
Producing wells FWHT > 120F

Start MeOH injection


upstream of choke

Sufficient MeOH available on FPSO

Open subsea choke and


start specified ramp-up

Is the
FWHT > 95F?

No

Continue MeOH injection

Yes

Stop MeOH injection and


continue well ramp-up

5-hour wellbore
cooldown available

Full system cooldown not available.

Steady-state operation.
No

Shutdown requires immediate


action: Go to 'Interrupted Start-up'

FWHT (all) > 120F


and Arrival Temp > 85F?

Yes
For additional wells:
Go to Top

OPRM20030302D_042.ai

Figure 1.47 Additional Well Start-up

Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 62 of 89

30-April-2006

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Unrestricted

System Conditions
Flowlines hot-oiled prior
to well start-up:
Untreated water present:
Wellbore, jumper, manifold
and/or flowline
Interrupted Start-up
Full cooldown not available
System shutdown
prior to steady-state

Immediate action required

5-hour wellbore
cooldown available
Tree
temperature
> 95F?

No

Continuous MeOH
injection at tree
Flowline inhibited:
treated water and dry oil

Yes

Optional:
Blow down flowlines
(contain dry oil and
inhibited fluid only)

Tree
temperature
> 120F?

Displace tree and bullhead


well with MeOH ASAP
(refer to MeOH table)

No

Wellbore and flowline


uninhibited
Wellbore, tree, jumper, manifold,
flowline cooldown not secured

Optional:
Displace jumpers and manifold
with MeOH (already treated)

Displace tree, jumpers and


manifold with MeOH ASAP

Yes

Blow down Flowlines ASAP


Go to 'Blowdown'

Bullhead well with MeOH


Complete within 5 hours

MeOH Table
Arrival
temperature
> 85F?

No

Blow down Flowlines ASAP


Go to 'Blowdown'

Jumper, Tree and Manifold


MeOH

GPM

18

Duration

hours

Vol jumper

bbls

Vol manifold

bbls

20

20

24

24

Yes

Steady-state condition:
Go to 'Shutdown
from steady-state'

Bullhead wells and displace tree,


jumper, manifold with MeOH.
Complete within 8 hours

Total bbls used


Well Treatment
MeOH

GPM

18

Duration/well

hours

3.88

1.94

bbls

50

50

Two Wells Total bbls Used

100

100

Total System bbls Used

124

124

Vol/well

OPRM20030302D_043.ai

Figure 1.48 Interrupted Start-up

Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 63 of 89

30-April-2006

Minimum available cooldown times:


Wellbore: 48 hours
Tree, jumper, manifold: 8 hours
Flowline: 16 hours
Riser: 12 hours

Planned Shutdown

Unplanned Shutdown

Close tree chokes and PSDVs

Auto-close boarding valves

Allow flowlines to evacuate


to LP separator

Stop riser gas lift


Close POVs and subsea
chokes (each tree)

Stop riser gas lift


MeOH Table
Jumper, Tree and Manifold
MeOH

GPM

18

Duration

hours

Vol jumper

bbls

Vol manifold

bbls

20

20

24

24

Total bbls used

Can
production be resumed
within 3 hours? (5 hours of treatment time
alotted for wells, jumpers and
manifold)

Yes

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Planned or Unplanned
Shutdown for Steady-state

FWHT (all wells) > 120F


Arrival T > 85F
Topsides facilities and
export available

Go to 'Restart'
(start up without utilising methanol)

No
Well Treatment
MeOH

GPM

18

Duration/well

hours

3.88

1.94

bbls

50

50

Two Wells Total bbls Used

100

100

Total System bbls Used

124

124

Vol/well

Displace tree, jumpers and


manifold with MeOH.
Complete within 8 hours of
shutdown (refer to MeOH table)

Bullhead wells with MeOH


(refer to MeOH table)

Can
production be resumed
within 8 hours?

Yes

Go to 'Warm Start'
(start up utilising methanol
as necessary)

No
No

Go to 'Cold Start'

Yes

Can
production be resumed
within 48 hours?

Blow down all flowlines


within 12 hours of shutdown
Go to 'Blowdown'
OPRM20030302D_044.ai

Unrestricted

30-April-2006

Figure 1.49 Planned or Unplanned Shutdown from Steady-state

Page 64 of 89

Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

OPRM-2003-0302D

System Conditions (Steady-state)

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Unrestricted

Blowdown

System Conditions

Secure flowlines for


indefinite shut-in

Flowlines isolated at
platform and tree
Manifold pigging iso valve closed
Untreated water present in flowline
Flowline at/near 8-hour cooldown

Line up topsides for


blowdown to flare system

Open appropriate
blowdown valves
Depressure until gas/
liquid rates diminish

Manifold
pressure > 10bara?
(or gas-assist known to
be necessary?

No

Yes

Initiate gas lift at each riser base:


15MMSCFD for 1 hour

Initiate dry-oil circulation


at 3 to 5mph
Option: Launch pig

Yes

Manifold
pressure > 10bara?
(or gas-assist known to
be insufficient?
No

Close boarding valve


Flowline secure for
indefinite shut-in
OPRM20030302D_045.ai

Figure 1.50 Blowdown

Section 1 Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 65 of 89

30-April-2006

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Unrestricted

Appendix 1A
Reservoir Fluid Properties
Table of Contents
TABLES
Table 1A.1 Measured Fluid Properties for Each Reservoir (from Bonga BoD) ...................67
Table 1A.2 Hydrate Dissociation Data for 702 Reservoir Fluid (from A Mehta, 1998) ........69
Table 1A.3 Hydrate Dissociation Data for 803 Reservoir Fluid (from A Mehta, 1998) ........71

FIGURES
Figure 1A.1 Phase Envelope for 702 Reservoir Fluid, Calculated in OLGA .......................67
Figure 1A.2 Hydrate Dissociation Curves for 702 Reservoir Fluid (Data in Table 1A.2) .....68
Figure 1A.3 Hydrate Dissociation Curves for 803 Reservoir Fluid (Data in Table 1A.3) .....70

Section 1 Appendix 1A Reservoir Fluid Properties

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 66 of 89

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Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Unrestricted

Table 1A.1 Measured Fluid Properties for Each Reservoir (from Bonga BoD)

Figure 1A.1 Phase Envelope for 702 Reservoir Fluid, Calculated in OLGA

Section 1 Appendix 1A Reservoir Fluid Properties

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 67 of 89

30-April-2006

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Unrestricted

Wate
r
Fres
h

8000

3 wt
%S

10 w

9000

alt

t% S
alt

10000

Pressure, psia

7000
6000

Hydrate Stability
Region

5000
4000
3000
2000
Non-Hydrate
Region

1000
0
40

45

50

55

60

65

70

75

80

85

Temperature, F

Figure 1A.2 Hydrate Dissociation Curves for 702 Reservoir Fluid (Data in Table 1A.2)
Section 1 Appendix 1A Reservoir Fluid Properties

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 68 of 89

30-April-2006

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Unrestricted

Fresh Water
P (p s ia)

T (F)

218.1

40.0

500

50.8

750

55.9

1000

59.4

2000

67.2

3000

71.4

4000

73.2

5000

74.9

6000

76.6

7000

78.2

8000

79.8

9000

81.3

10000

82.8

3 wt% Salt
252.0

40.0

500

48.9

750

54.0

1000

57.5

2000

65.2

3000

69.4

4000

71.2

5000

72.9

6000

74.6

7000

76.1

8000

77.7

9000

79.3

10000

80.8

10 wt% Salt
418.8

40.0

500

42.3

750

47.3

1000

50.7

2000

58.2

3000

62.2

4000

64.0

5000

65.8

6000

67.5

7000

69.1

8000

70.7

9000

72.3

10000

73.8

Table 1A.2 Hydrate Dissociation Data for 702 Reservoir Fluid


(from A Mehta, 1998)

Section 1 Appendix 1A Reservoir Fluid Properties

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 69 of 89

30-April-2006

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Unrestricted

a lt

10000

ter
h Wa

8000

Fres

10 w

3 wt
%S

alt

t% S

9000

Pressure, psia

7000
6000
Hydrate Stability
Region

5000
4000
3000
2000

Non-Hydrate
Region

1000
0
40

45

50

55

60

65

70

75

80

85

90

Temperature, F

Figure 1A.3 Hydrate Dissociation Curves for 803 Reservoir Fluid


(Data in Table 1A.3)
Section 1 Appendix 1A Reservoir Fluid Properties

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 70 of 89

30-April-2006

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Unrestricted

Fresh Water
159.5

40.0

500

55.2

750

60.3

1000

63.7

2000

71.0

3000

75.0

4000

77.9

5000

80.5

6000

82.7

7000

84.5

8000

86.2

9000

87.8

10000

89.4

3 wt% Salt
184.1

40.0

500

53.3

750

58.4

1000

61.8

2000

69.0

3000

72.9

4000

75.8

5000

78.4

6000

80.6

7000

82.4

8000

84.1

9000

85.7

10000

87.3

10 wt% Salt
301.7

40.0

500

46.6

750

51.6

1000

54.9

2000

62.0

3000

65.8

4000

68.7

5000

71.2

6000

73.4

7000

75.2

8000

76.9

9000

78.6

10000

80.2

Table 1A.3 Hydrate Dissociation Data for 803 Reservoir Fluid


(from A Mehta, 1998)

Section 1 Appendix 1A Reservoir Fluid Properties

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 71 of 89

30-April-2006

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Unrestricted

Appendix 1B
Wellbore Modelling Summary and Production Forecast
Table of Contents
1.0

RESERVOIR PRESSURE AND TEMPERATURE SUMMARY ..................................76

2.0

WELL PRODUCTION SUMMARY ............................................................................. 77

3.0

DESIGN BASIS AND PRODUCTION FORECAST: 702 RESERVOIR ......................78

4.0

DESIGN BASIS AND PRODUCTION FORECAST: 690 RESERVOIR ......................78

5.0

DESIGN BASIS AND PRODUCTION FORECAST: 710 RESERVOIR ......................78

6.0

DESIGN BASIS AND PRODUCTION FORECAST: 803 RESERVOIR ......................78

TABLES
Table 1B.1 Sample WELLTEMP Input File, for Well 702p4 ...............................................73
Table 1B.2 WELLTEMP Input Data for 702p4, Representing the Hottest 702 Well............74
Table 1B.3 Wellhead Temperatures Calculated in WELLTEMP for 702p4,
for Cold-earth Start-up (t = 0 to 1440 hours) and Cooldown
(t = 1440 to 1488 hours)..................................................................................74
Table 1B.4 WELLTEMP Input Data for 702p7, Representing the Coldest 702 Well...........75
Table 1B.5 Wellhead Temperatures Calculated in WELLTEMP for 702p7,
for Cold-earth Start-up (t = 0 to 1440 hours) and Cooldown
(t = 1440 to 1488 hours)..................................................................................75

Section 1 Appendix 1B Wellbore Modelling Summary and Production Forecast

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 72 of 89

31-December-2004

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

TITLE:
Bonga Well
1000 BOPD
CSE
Bare Tubing 6.625in
VERSION
3.4
TUBING
1
2
5.9
6.625 2000 2000
5.9
6.625 7477 7477
CASING
4
1
8.670 9.625 7477 6477
1
12.330 13.375 3637 2637
1
18.710 20.000 2000 0
1
27.000 30.000 200
0
WELLBORE
3
6
0
0
2000 2000
2200 2212
2400 2438
2700 2828
5780 7477
INITIAL TEMP
2
40
0
162
5780
PVYP FLUIDS
3
1
1
10.0
1
2
2
10.4
10
3
1
9.63
14
ASOLID
3
7
488
0.113
8
180
0.5
0.5
9
0.001 0.25
0.005
NATURAL GAS
1
10
0.7885 0.0663 0.0671
PRINT OPTIONS
1
0
1
1
1000.
PF
0
25
0
OPTIONS
3
3
0.0006 1
0
1
0
0
END
CHANGE
0.5 'HR'
SINGLE FLOW
2
2
10
162

0 BWPD

Unrestricted

15000 BOPD

0 BWPD

1
1
2
3
8
8

0
7
7

60
60
60

24.8

0.0391 0.0

0.0158

-8.83+08

15000 'BPD'

4612.5 9

29

Table 1B.1 Sample WELLTEMP Input File, for Well 702p4


(refer to the schematic in Figure 1.3)

Section 1 Appendix 1B Wellbore Modelling Summary and Production Forecast

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 73 of 89

31-December-2004

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Unrestricted

INPUT---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------common filename

MBPD

2.5
5
7.5
10
15
25
40
2.5
5
7.5
10
15
25
40

-----> 702p4

WC (%)

0
0
0
0
0
0
0
70
70
70
70
70
70
70

P-res
(PSI)

4800
4800
4800
4800
4800
4800
4800
3600
3600
3600
3600
3600
3600
3600

GOR
PI
(SCF/STB) (BLPD/PSI)

API

29
29
29
29
29
29
29
29
29
29
29
29
29
29

600
600
600
600
600
600
600
600
600
600
600
600
600
600

80
80
80
80
80
80
80
80
80
80
80
80
80
80

BHT (F)

162
162
162
162
162
162
162
162
162
162
162
162
162
162

bare tubing insulated


file number file number

1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14

15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28

BOPD

2500
5000
7500
10000
15000
25000
40000
750
1500
2250
3000
4500
7500
12000

BWPD

0
0
0
0
0
0
0
1750
3500
5250
7000
10500
17500
28000

MMSCFD

1.500
3.000
4.500
6.000
9.000
15.000
24.000
0.450
0.900
1.350
1.800
2.700
4.500
7.200

FBHP
(PSI)

4769
4738
4706
4675
4613
4488
4300
3569
3538
3506
3475
3413
3288
3100

Table 1B.2 WELLTEMP Input Data for 702p4,


Representing the Hottest 702 Well
BARE TUBING RESULTS:
time
T(F)
T(F)
T(F)
T(F)
T(F)
T(F)
T(F)
T(F)
T(F)
T(F)
T(F)
T(F)
T(F)
T(F)
(hr)
702p41
702p42
702p43
702p44
702p45
702p46
702p47
702p48
702p49 702p410 702p411 702p412 702p413 702p414
2.5 MBPD 5 MBPD 7.5 MBPD 10 MBPD 15 MBPD 25 MBPD 40 MBPD 2.5 MBPD 5 MBPD 7.5 MBPD 10 MBPD 15 MBPD 25 MBPD 40 MBPD
0.5
56.53
64.42
71.52
78.06
90.04
110.15
130.59
55.69
66.75
76.70
85.73
101.93
126.55
143.12
1
61.33
73.25
84.02
93.81
110.58
132.58
146.36
63.45
80.70
95.49
108.66
128.47
144.83
151.31
2
68.54
86.39
101.68
114.27
131.00
144.83
151.86
75.30
100.33
119.99
132.45
143.64
150.39
153.55
3
74.08
95.87
112.99
125.00
137.92
147.64
153.21
84.04
113.64
131.30
139.65
146.67
151.61
154.20
6
85.27
111.99
127.14
135.15
143.38
150.24
154.65
100.95
129.74
139.74
144.54
149.26
152.96
155.00
12
97.36
123.02
134.10
140.03
146.35
151.95
155.71
116.03
136.38
143.51
147.20
150.94
153.92
155.59
24
107.66
129.25
138.22
143.13
148.39
153.17
156.49
124.34
140.06
145.92
149.00
152.12
154.63
156.04
48
114.10
132.99
140.78
145.07
149.75
154.01
157.02
128.74
142.34
147.50
150.15
152.90
155.11
156.34
96
118.62
135.87
142.83
146.76
150.91
154.71
157.49
131.91
144.19
148.82
151.19
153.60
155.54
156.61
120
119.95
136.68
143.54
147.22
151.23
154.93
157.62
132.91
144.77
149.21
151.49
153.81
155.67
156.69
1440
129.83
142.97
148.07
150.78
153.69
156.44
158.59
139.98
148.82
152.01
153.63
155.28
156.56
157.25
1441
127.92
141.11
146.26
148.99
151.91
154.68
156.83
138.40
147.17
150.33
151.93
153.56
154.81
155.46
1443
122.90
135.67
140.66
143.31
146.14
148.82
150.88
133.32
141.67
144.68
146.19
147.72
148.88
149.43
1446
115.88
127.79
132.45
134.94
137.56
140.06
141.97
125.78
133.47
136.24
137.63
139.04
140.08
140.53
1448
112.07
123.47
127.93
130.31
132.82
135.23
137.04
121.59
128.94
131.58
132.91
134.26
135.25
135.68
1451
107.49
118.26
122.47
124.72
127.10
129.38
131.08
116.52
123.45
125.95
127.21
128.49
129.44
129.85
1452
106.20
116.78
120.92
123.14
125.48
127.72
129.40
115.09
121.90
124.36
125.60
126.85
127.79
128.20
1464
95.58
104.59
108.13
110.03
112.03
113.94
115.39
103.18
109.00
111.11
112.18
113.26
114.08
114.47
1488
84.49
91.58
94.45
95.99
97.63
99.17
100.35
90.46
95.18
96.89
97.77
98.65
99.33
99.67

Table 1B.3 Wellhead Temperatures Calculated in WELLTEMP for 702p4,


for Cold-earth Start-up (t = 0 to 1440 hours) and Cooldown (t = 1440 to 1488 hours)

Section 1 Appendix 1B Wellbore Modelling Summary and Production Forecast

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 74 of 89

31-December-2004

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Unrestricted

INPUT---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------common filename

MBPD

2.5
5
10
15
20
2.5
5
10
15
20
2.5
5
10
15
20

-----> 702p7

WC (%)

0
0
0
0
0
50
50
50
50
50
80
80
80
80
80

P-res
(PSI)

3200
3200
3200
3200
3200
3200
3200
3200
3200
3200
2200
2200
2200
2200
2200

GOR
PI
(SCF/STB) (BLPD/PSI)

API

29
29
29
29
29
29
29
29
29
29
29
29
29
29
29

600
600
600
600
600
600
600
600
600
600
600
600
600
600
600

30
30
30
30
30
30
30
30
30
30
30
30
30
30
30

BHT (F)

128
128
128
128
128
128
128
128
128
128
128
128
128
128
128

bare tubing insulated


file number file number

1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15

16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
30

BOPD

2500
5000
10000
15000
20000
1250
2500
5000
7500
10000
500
1000
2000
3000
4000

BWPD

0
0
0
0
0
1250
2500
5000
7500
10000
2000
4000
8000
12000
16000

MMSCFD

1.500
3.000
6.000
9.000
12.000
0.750
1.500
3.000
4.500
6.000
0.300
0.600
1.200
1.800
2.400

FBHP
(PSI)

3117
3033
2867
2700
2533
3117
3033
2867
2700
2533
2117
2033
1867
1700
1533

Table 1B.4 WELLTEMP Input Data for 702p7,


Representing the Coldest 702 Well

BARE TUBING RESULTS:


time
T(F)
T(F)
T(F)
T(F)
T(F)
T(F)
T(F)
T(F)
T(F)
T(F)
T(F)
T(F)
T(F)
(hr)
702p71
702p72
702p73
702p74
702p75
702p76
702p77
702p78
702p79 702p710 702p711 702p712 702p713
2.5 MBPD 5 MBPD 10 MBPD 15 MBPD 20 MBPD 2.5 MBPD 5 MBPD 10 MBPD 15 MBPD 20 MBPD 2.5 MBPD 5 MBPD 10 MBPD
0.5
54.19
60.88
71.75
80.23
86.59
54.76
64.21
79.62
90.98
98.94
55.91
66.79
83.99
1
57.90
67.76
83.06
93.28
99.50
60.68
74.82
94.75
105.48
110.97
62.80
78.73
99.47
2
63.71
77.95
96.19
104.68
108.49
69.89
89.01
107.82
114.18
116.73
73.37
93.81
111.00
3
68.23
84.90
102.31
108.63
111.00
76.65
97.13
112.11
116.31
118.01
80.90
101.60
114.22
6
77.33
95.37
108.12
111.90
113.13
88.71
106.32
115.41
118.08
119.22
93.32
109.13
116.65
12
86.01
101.88
111.00
113.61
114.33
97.78
110.62
117.13
119.14
120.00
101.64
112.57
118.05
24
92.84
105.56
112.70
114.71
115.19
103.09
112.96
118.25
119.91
120.54
105.98
114.50
118.96
48
96.90
107.74
113.83
115.45
115.74
105.99
114.40
119.00
120.40
120.93
108.33
115.69
119.57
96
99.49
109.33
114.71
116.07
116.21
107.96
115.60
119.63
120.82
121.25
110.13
116.67
120.08
120
100.36
109.77
114.99
116.25
116.35
108.66
115.98
119.80
120.94
121.34
110.62
116.99
120.23
1440
105.98
113.23
116.86
117.55
117.31
112.98
118.40
121.08
121.81
122.00
114.31
119.01
121.29
1441
104.18
111.53
115.24
115.96
115.73
111.45
116.86
119.53
120.24
120.40
112.64
117.27
119.46
1443
100.17
107.31
110.92
111.62
111.39
107.39
112.54
115.08
115.72
115.83
108.30
112.63
114.61
1446
95.14
101.79
105.17
105.83
105.62
101.93
106.69
109.04
109.63
109.71
102.72
106.69
108.50
1448
92.54
98.91
102.15
102.79
102.60
99.05
103.60
105.86
106.42
106.51
99.84
103.64
105.39
1451
89.46
95.49
98.56
99.17
99.01
95.63
99.92
102.06
102.61
102.70
96.43
100.03
101.71
1452
88.58
94.51
97.53
98.13
97.98
94.64
98.87
100.98
101.52
101.62
95.45
98.99
100.66
1464
81.21
86.29
88.89
89.42
89.31
86.39
90.01
91.84
92.31
92.42
87.17
90.23
91.69
1488
73.02
77.13
79.25
79.70
79.61
77.20
80.16
81.63
82.04
82.13
77.88
80.38
81.58

Table 1B.5 Wellhead Temperatures Calculated in WELLTEMP for 702p7,


for Cold-earth Start-up (t = 0 to 1440 hours) and Cooldown (t = 1440 to 1488 hours)

Section 1 Appendix 1B Wellbore Modelling Summary and Production Forecast

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 75 of 89

31-December-2004

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

1.0

Unrestricted

RESERVOIR PRESSURE AND TEMPERATURE SUMMARY


S Van Gisbergen, A Hartwijk and S Lindsey (1999).
Medium Skin P50
702 T@midperfs Initial Pavg
702p2
142
3421
702p3
132
2518
702p4
162
4503
702p5
153
3366
702p6
136
2830
702p7
128
2648
702p9
148
4317
702p10
148
4312
702p15
139
4183

690 T@midperfs Initial Pavg


b690p1
164
4586
b690p2
147
3826
b690p3
156
3722
b690p4
138
4201
b690p5
139
3138

803 T@midperfs Initial Pavg


803p1
179
5211
803p2
186
5299

710 T@midperfs Initial Pavg


710p1
146
4455
710p2
134
4238
710p3
144
4464
710p4
158
4649

High Skin P50


702 T@midperfs Initial Pavg
702p2
142
3679
702p3
132
2690
702p4
162
4503
702p5
153
3252
702p6
136
2987
702p7
128
2862
702p9
148
4317
702p10
148
4312
702p15
139
4183

690 T@midperfs Initial Pavg


690p1
164
4586
690p2
147
4042
690p3
156
3739
690p4
138
4201
690p5
139
3118

803 T@midperfs Initial Pavg


803p1
179
5211
803p2
186
5315

710 T@midperfs Initial Pavg


710p1
146
4455
710p2
134
3964
710p3
144
4197
710p4
158
4468

Low Skin P50


702 T@midperfs Initial Pavg
702p2
142
702p3
132
702p4
162
4503
702p5
153
702p6
136
702p7
128
702p9
148
4317
702p10
148
4312
702p15
139
4183

690 T@midperfs Initial Pavg


690p1
164
4586
690p2
147
690p3
156
690p4
138
690p5
139

803 T@midperfs Initial Pavg


803p1
179
5211
803p2
186

710 T@midperfs Initial Pavg


710p1
146
710p2
134
710p3
144
710p4
158

Section 1 Appendix 1B Wellbore Modelling Summary and Production Forecast

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 76 of 89

31-December-2004

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

2.0

Unrestricted

WELL PRODUCTION SUMMARY


S Van Gisbergen, A Hartwijk and S Lindsey (1999).

Phase 1 Wells
well
702p4
702p9
702p10
702p15
690p1
803p1

year
Q1 2003
Q1 2003
Q1 2003
Q1 2003
Q1 2003
Q1 2003

flowline
PF1
PF3
PF6
PF11
PF2
PF12

months
0
0
0
0
0
0

Phase 2 Wells
well
710p1
702p2
690p2
803p2
710p4
710p3
702p5
710p2
690p3
702p6
702p7
690p4
702p3
690p5

year
Q1 2004
Q1 2004
Q2 2004
Q2 2005
Q4 2005
Q1 2006
Q4 2006
Q1 2007
Q2 2007
Q1 2008
Q1 2008
Q1 2008
Q3 2008
Q1 2009

flowline
PF8
PF12
PF4/PF3
PF6/PF5
PF12
PF8/PF9
PF3
PF9
PF2
PF11
PF11
PF11
PF8
PF5

months
8
11
14
26
29
32
44
47
48
59
60
62
65
71

Well
702p2
702p3
702p4
702p5
702p6
702p7
702p9
702p10
702p15

Year
Q1 2004
Q3 2008
Q1 2003
Q4 2006
Q1 2008
Q1 2008
Q1 2003
Q1 2003
Q1 2003

Max. rate
22000
20000
54000
24000
20000
20000
50000
50000
50000

b690p1
b690p2
b690p3
b690p4
b690p5

Q1 2003
Q2 2004
Q2 2007
Q1 2008
Q1 2009

20000
20000
17000
16000
18000

803p1
803p2

Q1 2003
Q2 2005

24000
27000

710p1
710p2
710p3
710p4

Q1 2004
Q1 2007
Q1 2006
Q4 2005

30000
30000
28000
30000

Section 1 Appendix 1B Wellbore Modelling Summary and Production Forecast

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 77 of 89

31-December-2004

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

3.0

Unrestricted

DESIGN BASIS AND PRODUCTION FORECAST: 702 RESERVOIR


Refer to the Field Development Plan Rev 5 for production profiles.

4.0

DESIGN BASIS AND PRODUCTION FORECAST: 690 RESERVOIR


Refer to the Field Development Plan Rev 5 for production profiles.

5.0

DESIGN BASIS AND PRODUCTION FORECAST: 710 RESERVOIR


Refer to the Field Development Plan Rev 5 for production profiles.

6.0

DESIGN BASIS AND PRODUCTION FORECAST: 803 RESERVOIR


Refer to the Field Development Plan Rev 5 for production profiles.

Section 1 Appendix 1B Wellbore Modelling Summary and Production Forecast

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 78 of 89

31-December-2004

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Unrestricted

Appendix 1C
Production Flowlines: Topography and
Ambient Temperature Data
Table of Contents
1.0

TEMPERATURE AND SALINITY PROFILES.............................................................86

TABLES
Table 1C.1 West-side Flowline Topography Data Extracted from
Rev D Field Layout (Corresponding to Figure 1.49) ........................................82
Table 1C.2 Steel Catenary Riser Profile Data
(Corresponding to Figure 1.50: Phifer 1998) ...................................................85
Table 1C.3 Representative Ambient Sea Temperature Profile...........................................87
Table 1C.4 Salinity and Density Profiles (Parts per Thousand)..........................................88
Table 1C.5 Anticipated Bonga-area Water Current Velocities............................................89

FIGURES
Figure 1C.1 Flowline Topography for West-side Flowlines (Rev D Layout)........................80
Figure 1C.2 Steel Catenary Riser Profile (Phifer 1998)......................................................84

Section 1 Appendix 1C Production Flowlines: Topography and Ambient Temperature Data

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 79 of 89

31-December-2004

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Unrestricted

Flowline Topography
PFL - 11/12 (West South)-10"
- 960
- 980

Water Depth, m

-1 000
-1 020
-1 040

Rev. D

-1 060
-1 080
-1 100
-1 120
0

500

1 000

Riser Base

1 500

2 000

2 500

Distance, m

Flowline Topography
PFL - 08/09 (West North)-10"
- 960
- 980

Water Depth, m

-1 000
-1 020
-1 040

Rev. D

-1 060
-1 080
-1 100
-1 120
0
Riser Base

500

1 000

1 500

2 000

2 500

3 000

Distance, m

Figure 1C.1 Flowline Topography for West-side Flowlines (Rev D Layout)


Section 1 Appendix 1C Production Flowlines: Topography and Ambient Temperature Data

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 80 of 89

31-December-2004

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Unrestricted

Flowline Topography
PFL - 01/02 (East West)-10"
- 960
- 980

Water Depth, m

-1 000
-1 020
Rev. D

-1 040
-1 060
-1 080
-1 100
-1 120
0

1 000

2 000

3 000

Riser Base

4 000

5 000

6 000

7 000

8 000

9 000

10 000

Distance, m

Flowline Topography
PFL - 03/04/05/06 (East East)-12"
- 960
- 980

Water Depth, m

-1 000
-1 020
Rev. D

-1 040
-1 060
-1 080
-1 100
-1 120
0

1 000

Riser Base

2 000

3 000

4 000

5 000

6 000

7 000

Distance, m

Figure 1C.1 Flowline Topography for East-side Flowlines (Rev D Layout) (contd)

Section 1 Appendix 1C Production Flowlines: Topography and Ambient Temperature Data

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 81 of 89

31-December-2004

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

0
105.2632
184.2105
263.1579
315.7895
394.7368
447.3684
500
578.9474
631.5789
657.8947
710.5263
736.8421
763.1579
789.4737
815.7895
868.4211
1105.263
1263.158
1421.053
1447.368
1473.684
1500
1552.632
1578.947
1894.737
2000

West South, PFL - 11/12


Rev. D
-1028 manifold
-1026
-1024
-1022
-1020
-1018
-1016
-1014
-1012
-1011
-1012
-1012
-1010
-1008
-1006
-1004
-1002
-1000
-998
-998
-1000
-1002
-1000
-998
-996
-994
-994 riser base

Unrestricted

0
131.5789
473.6842
1052.632
1184.211
1236.842
1315.789
1342.105
1368.421
1421.053
1447.368
1500
1526.316
1578.947
1657.895
1710.526
1763.158
1789.474
1815.789
1842.105
1868.421
1921.053
1947.368
1973.684
1973.684
2000
2026.316
2078.947
2263.158
2289.474
2342.105
2368.421
2394.737

West North, PFL - 08/09


Rev. D
-1000 manifold
-998
-996
-998
-997
-998
-1000
-1002
-1004
-1004
-1002
-1002
-1000
-998
-996
-996
-998
-1000
-1002
-1004
-1006
-1006
-1004
-1002
-1000
-998
-996
-994
-995
-994
-992
-990
-988 riser base

Table 1C.1 West-side Flowline Topography Data Extracted from


Rev D Field Layout (Corresponding to Figure 1.49)

Section 1 Appendix 1C Production Flowlines: Topography and Ambient Temperature Data

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 82 of 89

31-December-2004

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

X, m
0
131.5789
263.1579
368.4211
447.3684
578.9474
657.8947
815.7895
894.7368
1000
1052.632
1131.579
1236.842
1342.105
1447.368
1526.316
1605.263
1684.211
1763.158
1868.421
1921.053
2000
2105.263
2210.526
2342.105
2447.368
2473.684
2500
2526.316
2578.947
2631.579
2684.211
2710.526
2736.842
2815.789
2894.737
2921.053
2947.368
2973.684
3000
3052.632
3105.263
3157.895
3210.526
3315.789
3394.737
3473.684
3552.632
3684.211
3789.474
3973.684
4052.632
4131.579
4210.526
4289.474
4368.421
4447.368
4552.632
4684.211
4815.789
4868.421
4947.368
5131.579
5184.211
5289.474
5394.737
5526.316
5710.526
5815.789
5973.684
6052.632
6157.895
6236.842

East West, PFL - 01/02


Rev. D
-1106 manifold
-1104
-1102
-1100
-1098
-1096
-1094
-1092
-1090
-1088
-1086
-1084
-1082
-1080
-1078
-1076
-1074
-1072
-1070
-1068
-1066
-1064
-1062
-1060
-1058
-1060
-1062
-1062
-1060
-1058
-1056
-1054
-1052
-1050
-1052
-1048
-1046
-1044
-1042
-1040
-1038
-1036
-1034
-1032
-1030
-1028
-1026
-1024
-1022
-1020
-1018
-1016
-1014
-1012
-1010
-1008
-1006
-1004
-1002
-1000
-998
-996
-994
-992
-990
-988
-986
-985
-986
-984
-982
-981
-982

Unrestricted

0
78.94737
236.8421
342.1053
447.3684
552.6316
631.5789
684.2105
710.5263
763.1579
789.4737
842.1053
947.3684
1078.947
1184.211
1289.474
1421.053
1526.316
1657.895
1789.474
1842.105
1868.421
1921.053
2000
2026.316
2052.632
2131.579
2184.211
2210.526
2236.842
2263.158
2289.474
2315.789
2342.105
2368.421
2421.053
2552.632
2605.263
2657.895
2684.211
2710.526
2736.842
2789.474
2868.421
3000
3289.474
3578.947
3684.211
3736.842
3789.474
3815.789
3842.105
3868.421
3894.737
3921.053
3973.684
4026.316
4131.579
4236.842
4315.789
4342.105
4394.737
4447.368
4631.579
4763.158
4868.421
4947.368
5000
5026.316
5078.947
5131.579
5210.526
5368.421

East East, PFL - 05/06


Rev. D
-1038 manifold
-1036
-1034
-1032
-1030
-1028
-1027
-1028
-1029
-1028
-1026
-1024
-1022
-1020
-1018
-1016
-1014
-1012
-1010
-1012
-1010
-1008
-1006
-1004
-1006
-1008
-1009
-1008
-1006
-1004
-1002
-1000
-998
-996
-994
-992
-990
-992
-990
-988
-986
-984
-982
-980
-978
-976
-978
-980
-982
-984
-986
-988
-990
-992
-994
-996
-998
-996
-994
-996
-998
-999
-998
-1000
-1002
-1004
-1006
-1008
-1010
-1008
-1009
-1008
-1010

Table 1C.1 East-side Flowline Topography Data (contd)

Section 1 Appendix 1C Production Flowlines: Topography and Ambient Temperature Data

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 83 of 89

31-December-2004

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

6289.474
6342.105
6421.053
6473.684
6526.316
6578.947
6631.579
6684.211
6763.158
6947.368
7078.947
7131.579
7210.526
7342.105
7578.947
7736.842
7815.789
7868.421
7947.368
8131.579
8394.737
8657.895
8842.105
8921.053
9052.632
9105.263
9131.579
9157.895
9184.211
9210.526
9236.842
9263.158
9289.474

Unrestricted

-984
-986
-988
-990
-992
-994
-996
-998
-1000
-1002
-1002
-1003
-1002
-1001
-1002
-1004
-1006
-1008
-1009
-1010
-1012
-1010
-1008
-1006
-1004
-1002
-1000
-998
-996
-994
-992
-990
-988 riser base

5421.053
5447.368
5473.684
5552.632
5578.947
5605.263
5631.579
5657.895
5684.211
5736.842
5789.474
5894.737
5947.368
6105.263
6157.895
6184.211
6210.526
6236.842
6263.158
6289.474
6315.789
6342.105

-1012
-1014
-1014
-1016
-1018
-1016
-1014
-1012
-1010
-1008
-1006
-1004
-1002
-1000
-998
-996
-994
-992
-990
-988
-986
-984 riser base
0

Table 1C.1 East-side Flowline Topography Data (contd)

3,500.00

3,000.00

2,500.00

Elevation, Feet

2,000.00

1,500.00

1,000.00

500.00

0.00
0

1000

2000

3000

4000

-500.00
Horizontal Distance, Feet

Figure 1C.2 Steel Catenary Riser Profile (Phifer 1998)


Section 1 Appendix 1C Production Flowlines: Topography and Ambient Temperature Data

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Riser top angle = 9.5 degrees from vertical


Riser top elevation = 3230 feet

X
(ft)
0
3.16
6.32
9.5
12.69
15.9
19.13
22.37
25.62
28.9
32.19
38.82
45.52
52.29
59.13
66.04
73.03
80.1
87.25
94.47
101.78
109.17
116.64
128.02
139.6
151.4
163.41
175.65
188.12
200.84
213.81
227.04
240.55
254.34
268.43
282.83
297.56
312.62
328.03
343.82
359.99
370.99
382.18
393.57
405.15
416.93
428.93
441.15
453.59
466.27
479.19
492.36
505.8
519.51
533.5
547.78
562.36
577.27
592.5
608.07
624

Y
(ft)
3,230.00
3,211.14
3,192.28
3,173.43
3,154.58
3,135.73
3,116.89
3,098.05
3,079.21
3,060.37
3,041.54
3,003.88
2,966.23
2,928.60
2,890.98
2,853.37
2,815.77
2,778.19
2,740.63
2,703.08
2,665.55
2,628.03
2,590.53
2,534.31
2,478.14
2,422.01
2,365.92
2,309.88
2,253.90
2,197.97
2,142.10
2,086.29
2,030.55
1,974.87
1,919.27
1,863.75
1,808.32
1,752.97
1,697.73
1,642.58
1,587.55
1,550.93
1,514.37
1,477.87
1,441.42
1,405.05
1,368.74
1,332.51
1,296.35
1,260.27
1,224.28
1,188.39
1,152.59
1,116.89
1,081.30
1,045.83
1,010.49
975.27
940.2
905.28
870.52

X
(ft)
640.3
656.99
674.08
691.6
709.55
727.96
746.85
766.24
786.15
806.61
827.64
849.26
871.51
894.4
917.97
942.24
967.24
993.01
1,019.56
1,046.92
1,075.12
1,104.17
1,134.10
1,164.91
1,196.60
1,229.16
1,262.58
1,296.82
1,331.79
1,367.40
1,385.39
1,403.46
1,421.57
1,439.67
1,457.68
1,475.50
1,492.99
1,509.98
1,526.20
1,541.31
1,544.16
1,546.94
1,549.65
1,552.28
1,554.82
1,557.28
1,559.64
1,561.89
1,564.04
1,566.06
1566.06
1569.94
1573.81
1577.68
1581.56
1585.43
1589.3
1593.18
1597.05
1600.93
1604.8
1953

Y
(ft)
835.93
801.52
767.32
733.33
699.56
666.05
632.81
599.85
567.21
534.9
502.96
471.43
440.33
409.7
379.59
350.04
321.11
292.86
265.34
238.64
212.81
187.96
164.16
141.52
120.14
100.14
81.62
64.72
49.55
36.24
30.33
24.92
20.04
15.7
11.91
8.67
5.98
3.83
2.21
1.08
0.91
0.75
0.61
0.48
0.37
0.27
0.19
0.11
0.05
0
0
-0.09
-0.16
-0.23
-0.28
-0.33
-0.37
-0.4
-0.43
-0.45
-0.46
-0.46

Table 1C.2 Steel Catenary Riser Profile Data


(Corresponding to Figure 1.50: Phifer 1998)

Section 1 Appendix 1C Production Flowlines: Topography and Ambient Temperature Data

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TEMPERATURE AND SALINITY PROFILES


G FORRISTALL (1998)
Temperature and salinity profiles were constructed by averaging all of the profiles on
the US National Oceanographic Data Center CD-ROM for the area between 4 to 6N
and 4 to 6E. Our experience is that deepwater temperatures do not vary much
over such an area. All of the profiles were averaged over depth bins, and the
standard deviation of the temperature in each bin was also found. The columns in
Table 1C.3 give the mean depth in the bin, the mean temperature, the standard
deviation of the temperature, the mean +/- the standard deviation and n, the number
of observations in the depth bin.
There are many more observations at shallow depths than deep in the water, but the
standard deviations of the observations are also much higher at shallow depths.
This variability is natural, largely due to seasonal effects in the temperature and river
runoff in the salinity. The average temperatures and salinities are, for engineering
purposes, nearly constant at great depth, and the average values in the tables can
be used with confidence despite the small numbers of observations.
Average values of seawater density were computed from the average temperature,
salinity and depth, and are given in the last column of Table 1C.4. The density is
given in units of kg/m3. Temperatures, salinities and densities at other depths can be
found by interpolation in the table.

Section 1 Appendix 1C Production Flowlines: Topography and Ambient Temperature Data

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Depth

Avg

Avg+std

Avg-std

Std

1.98

27.90

29.26

26.54

1.36

129.00

12.70

27.72

29.13

26.32

1.40

112.00

22.40

26.94

28.70

25.18

1.76

124.00

32.58

24.32

26.90

21.74

2.58

123.00

43.14

21.59

24.25

18.92

2.67

108.00

52.48

19.53

21.78

17.29

2.24

89.00

62.84

17.98

19.70

16.27

1.72

69.00

73.09

17.25

18.91

15.58

1.66

77.00

82.76

16.54

18.15

14.92

1.61

63.00

93.25

16.14

17.64

14.65

1.50

67.00

118.00

15.31

16.78

13.85

1.46

235.00

170.49

14.52

15.81

13.23

1.29

98.00

222.63

12.88

14.16

11.61

1.28

88.00

269.80

11.31

12.50

10.12

1.19

71.00

323.66

10.07

11.03

9.11

0.96

41.00

371.86

9.42

10.99

7.85

1.57

37.00

421.94

8.38

9.27

7.50

0.88

32.00

475.56

7.32

7.66

6.97

0.34

34.00

523.77

6.78

7.11

6.45

0.33

22.00

574.00

6.35

6.74

5.96

0.39

22.00

626.60

5.87

6.20

5.55

0.33

20.00

676.75

5.58

5.85

5.31

0.27

20.00

722.00

5.33

5.66

5.01

0.33

19.00

766.44

5.02

5.24

4.79

0.22

16.00

830.33

4.82

4.86

4.79

0.03

3.00

978.33

4.43

4.48

4.37

0.05

3.00

1000.00

4.43

4.43

4.42

0.00

2.00

Table 1C.3 Representative Ambient Sea Temperature Profile

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Depth

Avg

Avg
+std

Avg
-std

Std

Avg
Density

0.19

32.27

37.37

27.17

5.10

27.00

1020.4

11.78

33.70

35.47

31.94

1.77

18.00

1021.6

21.69

34.12

35.32

32.93

1.19

29.00

1022.1

31.81

35.30

35.71

34.88

0.42

26.00

1023.9

42.18

35.59

35.72

35.46

0.13

11.00

1024.9

50.75

35.69

35.73

35.64

0.05

12.00

1025.7

61.67

35.83

35.83

35.83

0.00

3.00

1026.2

74.36

35.73

35.74

35.72

0.01

11.00

1026.4

80.00

35.80

35.80

35.80

0.00

1.00

1026.6

95.40

35.76

35.76

35.76

0.00

5.00

1026.7

117.11

35.63

35.64

35.62

0.01

19.00

1026.9

168.38

35.49

35.50

35.49

0.00

13.00

1027.2

217.33

35.33

35.34

35.31

0.01

12.00

1027.5

270.77

35.13

35.14

35.12

0.01

13.00

1027.6

300.83

35.00

35.00

35.00

0.00

6.00

1028.4

381.00

34.83

34.84

34.83

0.00

8.00

1028.6

400.00

34.82

34.82

34.81

0.00

4.00

1028.6

483.80

34.71

34.71

34.71

0.00

5.00

1029.3

515.33

34.68

34.68

34.68

0.00

3.00

1029.6

585.00

34.69

34.69

34.69

0.00

1.00

1029.9

682.33

34.55

34.55

34.55

0.00

3.00

1030.3

700.00

34.57

34.57

34.57

0.00

2.00

1030.5

978.33

34.69

34.69

34.69

0.00

3.00

1032.0

1000.00

34.69

34.70

34.69

0.00

2.00

1032.0

Table 1C.4 Salinity and Density Profiles (Parts per Thousand)


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Depth (m)

Current (m/s)

1100m

0.18

800

0.17

500

0.19

200

0.35

100

0.37

0.70

Table 1C.5 Anticipated Bonga-area Water Current Velocities

Section 1 Appendix 1C Production Flowlines: Topography and Ambient Temperature Data

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Section 2
Flow Assurance Production Constraints

Table of Contents
1.0

OBJECTIVES ...............................................................................................................3

2.0

WELL STABILITY.........................................................................................................3

3.0

WELL KICK-OFF..........................................................................................................6

4.0

WAX DEPOSITION.......................................................................................................9
4.1

Flowline Wax Management..............................................................................11

4.2

East Flowlines..................................................................................................11

4.3

West Flowlines.................................................................................................11

5.0

WELLHEAD COOLDOWN .........................................................................................12

6.0

FLOWLINE/RISER COOLDOWN ...............................................................................12

7.0

FLOWLINE SLUGGING..............................................................................................13

8.0

CONCLUDING REMARKS .........................................................................................14

TABLES
Table 2.1 Minimum Well Production Rates for Stable, Controllable Flow.............................4
Table 2.2 Manifold Pressures for Various Hot-oiling Scenarios, With and Without Gas Lift .6
Table 2.3 Flowing Wellhead Temperatures .......................................................................10
Table 2.4 Wax Pigging Frequencies for Turndown 1 Well/1 Flowline Production
(Tsai et al, 2002) ................................................................................................11
FIGURES
Figure 2.1 Illustration of Multiple Solution Behaviour Associated with Well Instability ..........3
Figure 2.2 Reservoir Pressure Required for Well Start-up to Stable Flowrates:
Wells in Manifolds PM3 and PM4 (East-East Flowlines 3, 4, 5 and 6) ................7
Figure 2.3 Reservoir Pressure Required for Well Start-up to Stable Flowrates:
Wells in Manifold PM5 (East-West Flowlines 1 and 2) ........................................7
Figure 2.4 Reservoir Pressure Required for Well Start-up to Stable Flowrates:
Wells in Manifold PM 1 (West-North Flowlines 8 and 9) .....................................8
Figure 2.5 Reservoir Pressure Required for Well Start-up to Stable Flowrates:
Wells in Manifold PM2 (West-South Flowlines 11 and 12)..................................8

Section 2 Flow Assurance Production Constraints

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Table of Contents (contd)


FIGURES
Figure 2.6 Arrival Temperature as a Function of Rate, for 1 Well/1 Flowline
Production Scenarios .......................................................................................12
Figure 2.7 Riser Gas Lift Required for Slug Control: West Flowlines .................................13
Figure 2.8 Riser Gas Lift Required for Slug Control: East 10in flowlines............................14
APPENDICES
Appendix 2A Well Design Basis FDP Rev 5 ...................................................................15

Section 2 Flow Assurance Production Constraints

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OBJECTIVES
The principal objective of this study is to quantify flow assurance constraints for
production forecasting, particularly minimum acceptable flowrates per well and
flowline. It is important to note that results herein represent the absolute edge of the
flow assurance envelope, with essentially all conservatism in analysis removed.
As such, this analysis is intended for Shell Bonga project staff only and should not
be shared with Engineer, Procure, Install and Construct (EPIC) contractors, who
could misinterpret/misuse these results as a basis for systems design. The key
end-users of these results are:

Bonga reservoir engineering staff (Bonga Integrated Studies Team (BIST)),


to enable assessment and risking of production forecasts with respect to flow
assurance

Bonga operations staff, to outline the operating envelope for relevant flow
assurance risks

Noting that well stability is found to be the governing constraint for minimum well
flowrate, the following analysis approach is used:

2.0

(1)

Identification of minimum well rates for stable flow on a well-by-well basis.

(2)

Verification of flow assurance requirements for wax, hydrate and slugging at


the minimum stable rates.

WELL STABILITY
With respect to minimum well production rates, a key consideration is well stability,
particularly so for the larger tubing of the Bonga wells (5 1/2in and 6 5/8in).
As illustrated in Figure 2.1, multiphase wells exhibit multivalued behaviour at lower
production rates (ie two possible flowrates at the same applied pressure drop).
The low flowrate solution represents a liquid loaded well (usually with slugging at the
wellhead), while the high flowrate solution has less liquid hold-up and a larger
frictional pressure drop. Hence, rates below the instability threshold (the minimum in
Figure 2.1) are generally not controllable, as the past history of the wells liquid
loading will determine whether the low or high-flowrate solutions are attained.
In general, if the well flowrate is reduced (from a higher rate) to below the instability
threshold (by choking), the well will load-up with liquid and shut-in if the wellhead
pressure is not reduced.

Well
p

Instability
Production rate

Figure 2.1 Illustration of Multiple Solution Behaviour Associated


with Well Instability
Section 2 Flow Assurance Production Constraints

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Well

Tubing Size

Minimum Rate
for Stability

690p1 (horizontal)

5 1/2in

2.5MBLPD

690p2

5 1/2in

3.0

690p3

5 1/2in

2.0

690p4

5 1/2in

2.0

702p2

5 1/2in

5.0

702p4 (horizontal)

6 5/8in

7.0

702p3

5 1/2in

4.5

702p5

5 1/2in

4.5

702p6

5 1/2in

4.5

702p7

5 1/2in

5.0

702p9 (horizontal)

6 5/8in

6.5

702p10 (horizontal)

6 5/8in

7.0

702p14

5 1/2in

2.0

702p15 (horizontal)

6 5/8in

7.0

710p1

5 1/2in

5.0

710p2

5 1/2in

2.0

710p3

5 1/2in

3.5

710p4

5 1/2in

4.5

803p1

5 1/2in

4.5

803p2

5 1/2in

3.0

803p3

5 1/2in

5.0

Table 2.1 Minimum Well Production Rates for Stable, Controllable Flow

Section 2 Flow Assurance Production Constraints

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In this report, well stability for Bonga was assessed on a well-by-well basis using
Olga2000, with thermal well modelling tuned to match WellTemp predictions.
Well design parameters (ie productivities, deviation profiles, reservoir pressures etc)
are based on Bonga Field Development Plan (FDP) Rev 5 (summarised in
Appendix 2A). The procedure for assessing well stability is as follows:
(1)

Initial conditions consist of a gas-filled well at ambient geothermal conditions.

(2)

Reduce flowing wellhead pressure in 25psi increments until sustained


production occurs. If the Flowing Wellhead Pressure (FWHP) is too high, the
well will shut-in after liquid travels up the wellbore.

(3)

The minimum acceptable flowrate for a well is the smallest sustained


production that can occur as calculated in Step (2).
Note:

Production rates below the minimum rate for stability may simply be
unattainable (even if sufficient reservoir pressure exists), as additional
choking can cause the well to load-up and abruptly shut-in. That is,
intermediate rates below the threshold are unstable and may not be
observable in practice (much like the inherent instability of a pin
balanced on its tip).

As shown in Table 2.1, the minimum well rates for stability vary between 2 to
7MBLPD.
Notes:
(1)

The key discriminator between the lower and higher thresholds is the well
tubing, since lower gas velocities obtained for the larger 6 5/8in tubing are
more conducive to well load-up and instability.

(2)

The only wells with 6 5/8in production tubing are 702p9, 702p15, 702p10,
702p4, which are also horizontal completions (690p1 is the only other
horizontal well, but with 5 1/2in tubing).

Noting the complexities in modelling multiphase flow and the discrete 25psi
WWellhead Pressure (WHP) steps used in analysis, the limiting rate for both tubing
sizes is interpreted as the stability threshold for controllable steady-state production:

5 1/2in: 5MBLPD minimum rate for stability

6 5/8in: 7MBLPD minimum rate for stability

These thresholds are consistent with previous steady-state analysis (analogous to


Figure 2.1), summarised in van Gisbergen, 1999.

Section 2 Flow Assurance Production Constraints

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WELL KICK-OFF
Noting the relatively low Bonga reservoir pressures and the importance of
waterflood for pressure maintenance, well kick-off requirements are evaluated with
respect to depletion predictions for each well. Figures 2.2 to 2.5 show the reservoir
pressure required to start each well against a minimum attainable wellhead pressure
of 600psi, relative to the minimum reservoir pressure (over the field life) predicted by
GAP (GAP is a subsurface software used to model wells and flowline networks).
The minimum reservoir pressures tend to occur in mid-life; assuming effective
waterflood, the reservoir pressure rises later in field life. Note that a wellhead
backpressure of 600psi requires availability of gas lift if starting up into a hot oiled
(or high water cut) flowline. The manifold pressures obtained during hot-oiling of the
(worst-case) east flowloops are summarised in Table 2.2. To obtain manifold
pressures in the range of 600psi, the hot-oiling rate will have to be turned down
(eg to 10MBOPD) if a well is started up while hot-oiling. Further, gas lift (of the
return riser) is also required to reduce the riser hydrostatic head.

Flowloop

Hot-oiling Rate

Gas Lift

Manifold P

E-E (12in)

50MBOPD

0MMscfd

1640psia

E-E

50

10

1025

E-E

10

1545

E-E

10

20

500

E-W (10in) 50

1870

E-W

50

10

1280

E-W

10

1550

E-W

10

10

500

Table 2.2 Manifold Pressures for Various Hot-oiling Scenarios,


With and Without Gas Lift

Section 2 Flow Assurance Production Constraints

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5000
4500

Required reservoir P
for stable flow [psia]

4000
3500
3000

0% wc
50% wc
80% wc
Min Reservoir P

2500
2000
1500
1000
500
0
702p14

702p5

702p9

702p10

803p2

Figure 2.2 Reservoir Pressure Required for Well Start-up to


Stable Flowrates: Wells in Manifolds PM3 and PM4
(East-East Flowlines 3, 4, 5 and 6)

Figure 2.3 Reservoir Pressure Required for Well Start-up to


Stable Flowrates: Wells in Manifold PM5 (East-West Flowlines 1 and 2)

Section 2 Flow Assurance Production Constraints

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Figure 2.4 Reservoir Pressure Required for Well Start-up to


Stable Flowrates: Wells in Manifold PM 1 (West-North Flowlines 8 and 9)
4000
3500

Required reservoir P
for stable flow [psia]

3000
2500

0% wc
50% wc
80% wc
Min Reservoir P

2000
1500
1000
500
0
690p4

702p2 702p6 702p7 702p15 710p4 803p1 803p3

Figure 2.5 Reservoir Pressure Required for Well Start-up to


Stable Flowrates: Wells in Manifold PM2 (West-South Flowlines 11 and 12)

Section 2 Flow Assurance Production Constraints

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As shown in Figures 2.2 to 2.5, all wells except for 803p2 are able to start up against
a 600psi wellhead backpressure, for the worst-case scenario of an initially
liquid-loaded well and the minimum reservoir pressures of each body over the
field life. The liquid-loaded initial condition is based on the restart scenario for a well
which falls below the stability threshold and loads up with liquid. For most wells,
500 to 750psi of spare reservoir pressure capacity is available, with lesser margin
for 702p2, 702p5, and the 803 wells. For 803p2, extra surveillance attention will be
needed to avoid loading it with liquid, as it may not be restarted at the minimum 803
reservoir pressure. Also, the phasing of 803p2 with respect to stronger wells should
be assessed to assure that its production will not be backed out. These results
underscore the importance of effective waterflood for reservoir pressure
maintenance, as assumed in the GAP predictions.
In early field life, all wells are strong enough to start-up against a dead-oil filled riser
(with the possible exception of 803p2, which has a minimal pressure margin).
In fact, this additional riser hydrostatic head is needed for chilly choke management
in early life. Thus, an important surveillance activity will be to track the backpressure
requirements of individual wells, which will be necessary whenever wells in different
phases of life are to be started up and produced into the same flowline.

4.0

WAX DEPOSITION
The basic wax management strategy for Bonga is to flow above the Critical Wax
Deposition Temperature (CWDT) in the wellbore and to pig flowlines during planned
shutdown operations. Recent wax analysis (Tsai et al 2002) indicates a maximum
CWDT of 43C (109F) for B2ST3-702, at a (minimum) wellhead pressure of 400psi.
As shown in Table 2.3, at the minimum rates for well stability (5MBLPD for 5 1/2in
tubing; 7MBLPD for 6 5/8in tubing), several wells are at or near the onset point for
wellhead wax deposition: 690p4, 702p3, 702p6, 702p7, 710p2. Hence, long-term
turndown production (ie below 10MBLPD) should be avoided for these wells.
Noting the relatively low deposition rate characteristic of the Bonga fluids, production
of these lower-T wells may be tolerable for shorter-term durations to accommodate
transient operations such as well testing or well flowline switching.
Note: In Table 2.3, all other wells are outside the wax deposition envelope at the
minimum rates for stable flow.

Section 2 Flow Assurance Production Constraints

OPRM-2003-0302D

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Unrestricted

Well

Minimum Production
Rate (MBLPD)

Turndown
Wellhead T (F)

690p1

132

690p2

114

690p3

119

690p4

108

702p2

115

702p3

106

702p4 (6 5/8in)

136

702p5

117

702p6

109

702p7

99

702p9 (6 5/8in)

121

702p10 (6 5/8in)

123

702p14

117

702p15 (6 5/8in)

116

710p1

121

710p2

105

710p3

112

710p4

126

803p1

140

803p2

141

803p3

139

Table 2.3 Flowing Wellhead Temperatures


Table 2.3 gives the flowing wellhead temperatures (24 hours after warm-up) at
minimum stable production rates of 5MBLPD (5 1/2in tubing wells), and 7MBLPD
(6 5/8in tubing wells). Temperatures below CWDT = 109F are highlighted.

Section 2 Flow Assurance Production Constraints

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 10 of 25

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Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

4.1

Unrestricted

Flowline Wax Management


Regarding flowline/riser wax management, the basic operating strategy is to pig
flowlines for wax during scheduled or planned shut-ins, during hot or dry-oiling
operations. Based on the updated wax analysis in Tsai et al, 2002, pigging
frequency requirements at turndown conditions are shown in Table 2.4. The Flowing
Wellhead Temperature (FWHT) values of 100F and 120F are based on the
minimum FWHT observed at rates of 5MBLPD and 7MBLPD, respectively (refer to
Table 2.3, with slight exception of 116F for 702p15 at 7MBLPD). Recall that the
Bonga Basis of Design (BoD) specifies a minimum turndown rate of 10MBLPD per
flowline, so that these results apply to operations outside the design envelope.

4.2

East Flowlines
For wells with FWHTs in the order of 100F, extended turndown production at
5MBLPD (one well into one flowline) is not feasible for both East flowline loops,
as 8 to 10 piggings per year would be required. This would likely involve system
shut-ins (or temporary well curtailment) solely for wax management, if planned
shutdowns are less frequent than once per month (as is expected in availability
analysis). At 7MBLPD, the pigging frequency decreases to six per year (East 10in)
and 4 per year (East 12in), due to both the shorter residence time in the flowline and
the higher wellhead temperature (120F, refer to Table 2.4). The feasibility of such
pigging frequencies will have to be determined based on operating experience and
shutdown statistics (ie number of pigging opportunities). During surveillance, wax
analysis of the 690 wells (690p1, 690p2, 690p3) producing into the (worst-case)
East 10in flowlines PFL 1 and 2 can be used (along with thermal model
benchmarking) to further refine the 690 specific pigging requirements.

4.3

West Flowlines
Due to their much shorter offset, the West flowlines wax requirements are less
severe, with four piggings per year required for 5MBLPD production (one well into
1 flowline).
Note: In Table 2.3, the wellhead temperature for most wells exceeds 100F at
5MBLPD, so that this pigging frequency represents the upper limit.
As discussed above, post-start-up wax analysis should be included in the
surveillance programme, especially if such turndown production is anticipated for
some wells.
Rate
(MBLPD)

FWHT
(F)

Pigging Frequency
(No per Year)

East 10in
(PFL 1, 2)

100

10

120

East 12in
(PFL 3, 4, 5, 6)

100

120

West 10in
(PFL 8, 9, 11,
12)

100

120

Flowline

Table 2.4 Wax Pigging Frequencies for Turndown 1


Well/1 Flowline Production (Tsai et al, 2002)
Section 2 Flow Assurance Production Constraints

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 11 of 25

30-April-2006

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

5.0

Unrestricted

WELLHEAD COOLDOWN
Wellhead area equipment (tree, jumper, manifold) is to be insulated to meet a
cooldown specification: 120F to 73F in 12 hours (upstream of choke) and 120F to
63F in 12 hours (downstream of choke). As shown in Table 2.3, roughly half of the
wells will meet the 120F start temperature, even at turndown conditions (5 to
7MBLPD), and hence provide 12+ hours of wellhead area cooldown. Based on
analogy with cooldown performance of cylindrical components (eg well jumpers),
a start temperature of 100F will provide roughly 8 hours of cooldown. Since the
colder wells produce at 100F or higher at turndown, these wells will provide at least
8 hours of cooldown. Noting that the cooldown criteria is designed to provide time
for wellhead Methanol (MeOH) flushing of up to 16 wells, it is expected that 8 hours
of cooldown is sufficient for a limited number of producing wells, with the exact
number based on actual MeOH treatment times determined via surveillance.

6.0

FLOWLINE/RISER COOLDOWN
The production flowlines and riser are governed by the following cooldown
specifications:

West-side 10in flowlines:

97F (36C) to 66F (19C) in no less than 12 hours

East-side 10in and 12in flowlines:

86F (30C) to 61F (16C) in no less than 12 hours

Arrival Temperature per Flowline (F)

160
702p15/PF11
803p1/PF12

140

702p4/PF1
690p1/PF2
120

702p9/PF3
702p10/PF6

100

80

60
0

10

20

30

40

50

60

Rate (MBOPD)
OPRM20030302D_046.ai

Figure 2.6 Arrival Temperature as a Function of Rate


for 1 Well/1 Flowline Production Scenarios

Section 2 Flow Assurance Production Constraints

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 12 of 25

30-April-2006

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Unrestricted

Note: The West and East start temperatures differ due to offset differences, while
the end temperatures differ due to the effects of line-packing (with an
assumed 10 minimum choke closing time).
Arrival temperatures as a function of production rate for representative early-life
one well/one flowline combinations are shown in Figure 2.6.
Note: The required riser base start temperatures translate to arrival temperatures of
approximately 80F (East) and 90F (West).
In Figure 2.6, the 12-hour cooldown requirement corresponds to minimum rates of
approximately 5MBLPD (West) and 7MBLPD (East). These results are also
consistent with the generalised thermal modelling in Tsai et al, 2002, for a wellhead
temperature of 120F.

7.0

FLOWLINE SLUGGING
A key consideration for turndown production at Bonga is control of terrain slugging,
noting recent slug-induced operational difficulties in the Gulf of Mexico (GoM).
For Bonga, riser gas lift with up to 25MMscfd for a given riser is available for slug
control at turndown, but it is important to note that the total gas lift compression
capacity is 65MMscfd (Bonga BoD). Hence, only a limited number of flowlines may
be operated simultaneously in an extended turndown condition. As illustrated in
Figures 2.7 and 2.8, terrain slug control requires the 25MMscfd gas lift capacity at
production rates of 5MBLPD (West) and 7MBLPD (East).
Note: The minimum flowrate for the East 12in flowlines is also approximately
7MBLPD, with residual 50bbl slugs observed even at high gas lift rates
(compared to complete slug suppression for the other flowlines).

20

Required Gas Lift (MMSCFD)

0% wc
50% wc
15

80% wc

10

0
0

10

20

30

40

Liquid Production Rate (MBLPD)


OPRM20030302D_047.ai

Figure 2.7 Riser Gas Lift Required for Slug Control: West Flowlines

Section 2 Flow Assurance Production Constraints

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 13 of 25

30-April-2006

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Unrestricted

40

Required Gas Lift (MMSCFD)

0% wc
50% wc
30

80% wc

20

10

0
0

10

20

30

40

Liquid Production Rate (MBLPD)


OPRM20030302D_048.ai

Figure 2.8 Riser Gas Lift Required for Slug Control: East 10in flowlines

8.0

CONCLUDING REMARKS
To better quantify the Bonga operating envelope, key flow assurance issues have
been analysed at turndown production conditions, including: well stability, well and
flowline wax deposition, wellhead and flowline cooldown, and flowline slugging.
Collectively, the edge of the operating envelope is defined by the following
production constraints, which must be satisfied simultaneously:

5 1/2in wells: Rates per well 5MBLPD

6 5/8in wells: Rates per well 7MBLPD

West flowlines (PFL 8, 9, 11, 12): Rates per flowline 5MBLPD

East flowlines (PFL 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6): Rates per flowline 7MBLPD

Interestingly, each of these flow assurance requirements tends to involve a similar


minimum rate constraint, indicating that a variety of operational difficulties may occur
if these constraints are violated. In production forecasting, lower rates may be
feasible but should be risked for flow assurance. Noting the high cost of
deferment/intervention, it is recommended to maintain (through operational solutions
and careful well sequencing) the original minimum design rates of 10MBLPD per
well and 10MBLPD per flowline. Finally, it is important to note that these results are
based on complex predictive modelling surveillance, sampling and model
benchmarking will be required to precisely define the actual operating envelope.

Section 2 Flow Assurance Production Constraints

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 14 of 25

30-April-2006

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Unrestricted

Appendix 2A
Well Design Basis FDP Rev 5
Compiled by Kelda McFee.
690 Wells
690p1
Well Trajectory
MD(ft) SS
WD
3581
2
3600

TVD (ft) SS
3581
3600

Inc (deg)
0
0

3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
30
31
32
33
34
35
36
37
38
39
40
41
42
43
44
45
46
47
48
49
50
51
52
53
54
55
56
57
58
59
60
61

3700
3800
3900
4000
4100
4200
4300
4400
4500
4600
4700
4800
4900
5000
5100
5200
5300
5400
5500
5600
5700
5800
5900
6000
6100
6200
6299.7
6399.1
6497.6
6594.2
6688.4
6780.5
6872.9
6965.2
7057.6
7150
7242.4
7334.8
7427.1
7519.5
7611.9
7704.3
7796.7
7889.1
7981.4
8073.8
8166.2
8258.6
8351
8435.6
8443.3
8533.6
8619.8
8701.3
8777.4
8847.5
8911.2
8967.9
9017.3

0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
2.5
5
7.5
12.5
17.5
22.51
22.51
22.51
22.51
22.51
22.51
22.51
22.51
22.51
22.51
22.51
22.51
22.51
22.51
22.51
22.51
22.51
22.51
22.51
22.51
22.93
27.93
32.93
37.93
42.93
47.93
52.93
57.93
62.93

3700
3800
3900
4000
4100
4200
4300
4400
4500
4600
4700
4800
4900
5000
5100
5200
5300
5400
5500
5600
5700
5800
5900
6000
6100
6200
6300
6400
6500
6600
6700.3
6800
6900
7000
7100
7200
7300
7400
7500
7600
7700
7800
7900
8000
8100
8200
8300
8400
8500
8591.6
8600
8700
8800
8900
9000
9100
9200
9300
9400

hz
Summary Profile
PI@PSSS
Initial Pavg

20
4511

bbl/day psia
psia

Initial GOR
T@midperfs

605
160

scf/bbl
F

SSSV
Depth ML (ft)
ID (in)
Length (ft)
TVD (ft) SS

2300
4.56
9.72
9447.2

Tubing size (I)


AHD ft (SS)
12931

Roughness
Geothermal profile
Heat transfer coefficient

ID (in)
4.892

OD (in)
5 1/2

0.0018
Linear between reservoir and seabed
2

Section 2 Appendix 2A Well Design Basis FDP Rev 5

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 15 of 25

31-December-2004

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Unrestricted

690 Wells (contd)


690p1
Well Trajectory
MD(ft) SS

TVD (ft) SS

Inc (deg)

62
63
64
65
66
67
68
69
70
71
72
73
74
75
76
77
78
79
80
81
82
83
84
85
86
87
88
89
90
91
92
93
94
95
96
97
98
99
100
101
102
103

9058.8
9092.3
9117.7
9138.2
9159
9180.1
9200.6
9221.4
9240.1
9242.2
9258.8
9268.3
9278.8
9289.4
9299.9
9310.4
9320.9
9323.7
9325.1
9325.4
9330.9
9340.6
9350.4
9360.1
9369.9
9379.7
9389.4
9399.2
9406.5
9408.7
9411.2
9413.2
9416.8
9420.5
9424.1
9427.8
9431.4
9435.1
9438.7
9442.4
9446
9447.2

67.93
72.93
78
78
78
78
78
78
78
78.5
83.97
83.97
83.97
83.97
83.97
83.97
83.97
83.97
84.54
84.4
84.4
84.4
84.4
84.4
84.4
84.4
84.4
84.4
84.4
85.65
87.91
87.91
87.91
87.91
87.91
87.91
87.91
87.91
87.91
87.91
87.91
87.91

Well Trajectory
MD(ft) SS
WD
3581.0
2
5500.0
3
6400.0
4
7789.4

TVD (ft) SS
3581.0
5500.0
6310.3
7292.7

Inc (deg)
0.00
0.00
45.00
45.00

5
1
2
3
4

7521.0
8286.2
8404.3
8678.0
8775.0

65.00
65.00
83.46
83.46
83.46

9500
9600
9701.3
9800
9900
10001.3
10100
10200
10289.9
10300
10409.6
10500
10600
10700
10800
10900
11000
11026.7
11041.4
11044.1
11100
11200
11300
11400
11500
11600
11700
11800
11874.8
11900
11945.5
12000
12100
12200
12300
12400
12500
12600
12700
12800
12900
12931.2

hz

690p2

8189.4
10000.0
10435.0
12837.6
13689.2

Summary Profile
Tubing size (I)
PI@PSSS
Initial Pavg
Initial GOR
T@midperfs

25
4279
605
146

SSSV
Depth ML (ft)
ID (in)
Length (ft)
TVD (ft) SS

2300
4.56
9.72
5881.0

bbl/day psia
psia
scf/bbl
F

AHD ft (SS)
13689

Roughness
Geothermal profile
Heat transfer coefficient

ID (in)
4.892

OD (in)
5 1/2

0.0018
linear
2

Section 2 Appendix 2A Well Design Basis FDP Rev 5

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 16 of 25

31-December-2004

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Unrestricted

690 Wells (contd)


S690p3
Well Trajectory
MD(ft) SS

TVD (ft) SS

Inc (deg)

Sidetrack of 702p4
WD
3568.0
1
7300.0
2
7686.6
3
10589.6

3568.0
7236.6
7489.2
9023.0

0.00
40.00
58.11
58.11

Summary Profile

S690p4
Well Trajectory
MD(ft) SS

TVD (ft) SS

Inc (deg)

Sidetrack of 702p2
WD
3369.0
1
6150.0
2
7415.4
3
10841.9

3369.0
6147.6
7090.1
8268.0

0.00
7.50
69.89
69.89

Tubing size (I)


PI@PSSS
Initial Pavg
Initial GOR
T@midperfs

18
4365
605
155

SSSV
Depth ML (ft)
ID (in)
Length (ft)
TVD (ft) SS

2300
4.56
9.72
5868.0

bbl/day psia
psia
scf/bbl
F

AHD ft (SS)
10590

Roughness
Geothermal profile
Heat transfer coefficient

ID (in)
4.892

OD (in)
5 1/2

0.0018
linear
2

Summary Profile
Tubing size (I)
PI@PSSS
Initial Pavg
Initial GOR
T@midperfs

19
4415
605
137

SSSV
Depth ML (ft)
ID (in)
Length (ft)
Depth (ft) SS

2300
4.56
9.72
5669.0

bbl/day psia
psia
scf/bbl
F

AHD ft (SS)
10842

Roughness
Geothermal profile
Heat transfer coefficient

ID (in)
4.892

OD (in)
5 1/2

0.0018
linear
2

702 Wells
702p2
Well Trajectory
MD(ft) SS
WD
3369.0
2
5850.0

TVD (ft) SS
3369.0
5850.0

Inc (deg)
0.00
0.00

3
4
5
6
7
8
9

6149.1
6838.1
8121.9
8387.4
8467.0
8544.0
8838.0

7.50
47.03
47.03
30.00
30.00
30.00
30.00

TVD (ft) SS

Inc (deg)

6150.0
6940.6
8824.1
9164.7
9256.6
9345.5
9685.0

S702p3
Well Trajectory
MD(ft) SS
Sidetrack of 710p1
WD
3276.0
1
5950.0
2
7095.7
3
9150.2

Summary Profile
PI@PSSS
Initial Pavg

100
4201

Initial GOR
T@midperfs

589.57 scf/bbl
143
F

SSSV
Depth ML (ft)
ID (in)
Length (ft)
TVD SS (ft)

2300
4.56
9.72
5669.0

bbl/day psia
psia

Tubing size (I)


AHD ft (SS)
9685

Roughness
Geothermal profile
Heat transfer coefficient

ID (in)
4.892

OD (in)
5 1/2

0.0018
Linear between reservoir and seabed
2

Summary Profile

3276.0
5948.7
6915.0
8050.0

0.00
7.50
56.46
56.46

PI@PSSS
Initial Pavg
Initial GOR
T@midperfs

20
4052
589.57
130

SSSV
Depth ML (ft)
ID (in)
Length (ft)
TVD SS (ft)

2300
4.56
9.72
5576.0

bbl/day psia
psia
scf/bbl
F

Tubing size (I)


AHD ft (SS)
9150

Roughness
Geothermal profile
Heat transfer coefficient

ID (in)
4.892

OD (in)
5 1/2

0.0018
Linear between reservoir and seabed
2

Section 2 Appendix 2A Well Design Basis FDP Rev 5

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 17 of 25

31-December-2004

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Unrestricted

702 Wells (contd)


702p5
Well Trajectory
MD(ft) SS
1
3343.0
2
5500.0
3
6333.2
4
9831.1

Summary Profile
TVD (ft) SS
3343.0
5500.0
6261.7
8875.0

Inc (deg)
0.00
0.00
41.66
41.66

S702p6
Well Trajectory
MD(ft) SS
Sidetrack of 702p15
WD
3359.0
1
5600.0
2
6790.5

3359.0
5600.0
6586.5

0.00
0.26
59.64

8216.0

59.64

10014.0

PI@PSSS
Initial Pavg
Initial GOR
T@midperfs

35
4351
589.57
151

SSSV
Depth ML (ft)
ID (in)
Length (ft)
TVD SS (ft)

2300
4.56
9.72
5643.0

bbl/day psia
psia
scf/bbl
F

Tubing size (I)


AHD ft (SS)
9831

Roughness
Geothermal profile
Heat transfer coefficient

ID (in)
4.892

OD (in)
5 1/2

0.0018
Linear between reservoir and seabed
2

Summary Profile
TVD (ft) SS

Inc (deg)

S702p7
Well Trajectory
MD(ft) SS
Sidetrack of 803p3
WD
3359.0
1
6500.0
2
7840.1
3
10528.0
4
10778.5
5
11349.1

3359.0
6494.6
7357.1
7850.0
7869.1
7851.0

0.00
17.50
79.43
79.43
91.82
91.82

702p14
Well Trajectory
MD(ft) SS
WD
3327
1
5500
2
6500
3
6909.6
4
7409.6
5
13957.9
6
14267

TVD (ft) SS
3327
5500
6377.8
6641.1
6870.2
8565
8645

Inc (deg)
0
0
50
50
75
75
75

PI@PSSS
Initial Pavg
Initial GOR
T@midperfs

15
4129
589.57
136

SSSV
Depth ML (ft)
ID (in)
Length (ft)
TVD SS (ft)

2300
4.56
9.72
5659.0

bbl/day psia
psia
scf/bbl
F

Tubing size (I)


AHD ft (SS)
10014

Roughness
Geothermal profile
Heat transfer coefficient

ID (in)
4.892

OD (in)
5 1/2

0.0018
Linear between reservoir and seabed
2

Summary Profile
TVD (ft) SS

Inc (deg)
PI@PSSS
Initial Pavg
Initial GOR
T@midperfs

14
4032
589.57
120

SSSV
Depth ML (ft)
ID (in)
Length (ft)
TVD SS (ft)

2300
4.56
9.72
5659.0

bbl/day psia
psia
scf/bbl
F

Tubing size (I)


AHD ft (SS)
11349

Roughness
Geothermal profile
Heat transfer coefficient

ID (in)
4.892

OD (in)
5 1/2

0.0018
linear
2

Summary Profile
Tubing size (I)
AHD ft (SS)
14267

PI@PSSS
Initial Pavg
Initial GOR
T@midperfs

13
4247
589.57
144

SSSV
Depth ML (ft)

2300

Roughness

0.0018

ID (in)
Length (ft)
TVD SS (ft)

4.56
9.72
5627.0

Geothermal profile
Heat transfer coefficient

linear
2

bbl/day psia
psia
scf/bbl
F

ID (in)
4.892

OD (in)
5 1/2

Section 2 Appendix 2A Well Design Basis FDP Rev 5

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 18 of 25

31-December-2004

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Unrestricted

702 Wells (contd)


702p9
Well Trajectory
MD(ft) SS
WD
3331.0
2
3721.4
3
4003.9
4
4286.0
5
4568.8
6
4851.4
7
5133.7
8
5416.1
9
5599.8
10
5678.0
11
5764.0
12
5866.0
13
5960.0
14
6051.0
15
6143.0

TVD (ft) SS
3331.0
3721.4
4003.9
4286.0
4568.8
4851.4
5133.7
5416.1
5599.8
5678.0
5764.0
5866.0
5959.9
6050.4
6141.3

Inc (deg)
0.00
0.09
0.35
0.31
0.18
0.18
0.18
0.22
0.13
0.45
0.30
1.33
3.94
7.13
10.65

Roughness
Geothermal profile
Heat transfer coefficient

16
17
18

6240.0
6333.0
6426.0

6235.9
6324.2
6408.6

15.04
21.29
28.27

Well Design/ Tubing Size

19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
30
31
32
33
34
35
36
37
38
39
40
41
42
43
44
45
46
47
48
49
50
51
52
53
54
55
56
57
58
59
60
61
62
63
64
65
66
67
68
69
70

6520.0
6615.0
6709.0
6804.0
6896.0
6989.0
7151.0
7244.0
7341.0
7434.0
7526.0
7620.0
7713.0
7807.0
7901.0
7995.0
8089.0
8184.0
8278.0
8374.0
8468.0
8561.0
8656.0
8666.2
8750.0
8820.0
8846.0
8920.0
9020.0
9120.0
9220.0
9320.0
9420.0
9520.0
9620.0
9720.0
9820.0
9853.7
9920.0
10020.0
10120.0
10195.5
10216.0
10220.0
10266.0
10320.0
10392.2
10420.0
10520.0
10620.0
10720.0
10820.0

6487.6
6560.2
6629.5
6700.0
6767.0
6831.4
6935.9
6991.1
7044.7
7095.2
7146.9
7201.9
7259.1
7320.1
7383.7
7448.9
7516.0
7585.1
7655.0
7729.5
7804.2
7878.5
7955.3
7963.4
8029.3
8085.1
8106.3
8165.8
8241.8
8312.2
8376.7
8434.8
8486.1
8530.2
8567.0
8596.1
8617.3
8622.7
8632.4
8647.0
8661.7
8672.7
8675.7
8676.3
8683.0
8689.7
8694.7
8695.8
8699.7
8703.6
8707.5
8711.4

37.12
43.15
41.96
42.11
44.43
47.94
51.95
55.29
57.73
56.47
55.16
53.17
51.00
48.10
46.70
45.47
43.32
43.37
40.65
37.46
37.36
36.49
35.73
37.92
38.51
35.78
34.77
38.21
42.86
47.51
52.16
56.81
61.46
66.11
70.76
75.41
80.05
81.59
81.59
81.59
81.59
81.59
81.59
81.59
81.59
84.23
87.77
87.77
87.77
87.77
87.77
87.77

Summary Profile
PI@PSSS
Initial Pavg
Initial GOR
T@midperfs

100
4292
589.57
147

SSSV
Depth ML (ft)
ID (in)
Length (ft)*
TVD SS (ft)

2300
4.56
9.72
5631.0

AHD ft (SS)
3545
5545
5576.72
10576.72
12084.7

ID (in)
4.892
5.921
4.562
5.921
4.892

bbl/day psia
psia
scf/bbl
F

0.0018
Linear between reservoir and seabed
2

OD (in)
6
7.191
7.99
7.191
6.05

Length (ft)
45
2000
31.72
5000
1508.0

Description
Tubing Hanger
Tubing
SSSV*
Tubing
Excluder Screens

Section 2 Appendix 2A Well Design Basis FDP Rev 5

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 19 of 25

31-December-2004

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Unrestricted

702 Wells (contd)


702p9
Well Trajectory
MD(ft) SS

TVD (ft) SS

Inc (deg)

71
72
73
74
75
76
77
78
79
80
81
82
83

8715.3
8719.1
8723.0
8726.9
8730.8
8734.7
8738.6
8742.5
8746.4
8750.3
8754.2
8758.1
8760.6

87.77
87.77
87.77
87.77
87.77
87.77
87.77
87.77
87.77
87.77
87.77
87.77
87.77

702p15
Well Trajectory
MD(ft) SS
WD
3359.0
2
3369.0
3
3420.0
4
3520.0
5
3620.0

TVD (ft) SS
3359.0
3369.0
3420.0
3520.0
3620.0

Inc (deg)
0.00
0.00
0.00
0.00
0.00

PI@PSSS
Initial Pavg
Initial GOR
T@midperfs

135
4168
589.57
140

6
7
8
9
10
11

3720.0
3820.0
3920.0
4020.0
4120.0
4220.0

3720.0
3820.0
3920.0
4020.0
4120.0
4220.0

0.00
0.00
0.00
0.00
0.00
0.00

SSSV
Depth ML (ft)
ID (in)
Length (ft)*
TVD SS (ft)

2300
4.56
9.72
5659.0

12
13
14
15
16

4320.0
4420.0
4520.0
4620.0
4720.0

4320.0
4420.0
4520.0
4620.0
4720.0

0.00
0.00
0.00
0.00
0.00

Roughness
Geothermal profile
Heat transfer coefficient

17
18
19

4820.0
4920.0
5020.0

4820.0
4920.0
5020.0

0.00
0.00
0.00

Well Design/ Tubing Size

20
21

5120.0
5220.0

5120.0
5220.0

0.00
0.00

AHD ft (SS)

ID (in)

OD (in)

Length (ft)

Description

22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
30
31
32
33
34
35
36
37
38
39
40
41
42
43
44
45
46
47
48
49
50
51
52
53

5320.0
5420.0
5520.0
5620.0
5720.0
5820.0
5920.0
6020.0
6120.0
6220.0
6320.0
6420.0
6520.0
6620.0
6720.0
6820.0
6920.0
7020.0
7120.0
7170.8
7220.0
7320.0
7420.0
7520.0
7620.0
7720.0
7820.0
7920.0
8020.0
8120.0
8220.0
8320.0

5320.0
5420.0
5520.0
5620.0
5720.0
5820.0
5920.0
6020.0
6120.0
6220.0
6320.0
6420.0
6520.0
6620.0
6720.0
6820.0
6920.0
7020.0
7120.0
7170.8
7220.0
7319.6
7418.0
7514.6
7608.6
7699.2
7785.8
7867.8
7944.4
8015.1
8079.4
8136.8

0.00
0.00
0.00
0.00
0.00
0.00
0.00
0.00
0.00
0.00
0.00
0.00
0.00
0.00
0.00
0.00
0.00
0.00
0.00
0.00
2.46
7.46
12.46
17.46
22.46
27.46
32.46
37.46
42.46
47.46
52.46
57.46

3545
5545
5576.72
10576.72
11264.1

4.892
5.921
4.562
5.921
4.892

6
7.191
7.99
7.191
6.05

45
2000
31.72
5000
687.4

Tubing Hanger
Tubing
SSSV*
Tubing
Excluder Screens

10920.0
11020.0
11120.0
11220.0
11320.0
11420.0
11520.0
11620.0
11720.0
11820.0
11920.0
12020.0
12084.7

Summary Profile

Summary Profile

bbl/day psia
psia
scf/bbl
F

0.0018
Linear between reservoir and seabed
2 Btu/hr ft2/F

Section 2 Appendix 2A Well Design Basis FDP Rev 5

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 20 of 25

31-December-2004

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Unrestricted

702 Wells (contd)


702p15
Well Trajectory
MD(ft) SS

TVD (ft) SS

Inc (deg)

54
55
56
57
58
59
60
61
62
63
64
65
66
67
68
69
70
71
72
73
74
75
76
77
78
79
80
81
82
83
84
85
86
87
88
89

8186.9
8229.2
8263.5
8289.4
8299.4
8307.9
8325.3
8342.6
8347.0
8352.0
8360.7
8373.7
8378.2
8379.7
8384.1
8388.4
8392.7
8397.1
8401.4
8405.8
8410.1
8414.4
8418.8
8421.0
8424.1
8429.5
8436.0
8448.9
8461.8
8474.7
8487.6
8500.5
8513.5
8526.4
8539.3
8545.0

62.46
67.46
72.46
77.46
80.00
80.00
80.00
80.00
80.00
80.00
80.00
84.46
87.51
87.51
87.51
87.51
87.51
87.51
87.51
87.51
87.51
87.51
87.51
87.51
85.09
82.58
82.58
82.58
82.58
82.58
82.58
82.58
82.58
82.58
82.58
82.58

702p10
Well Trajectory
MD(ft) SS
WD
3178.0
2
3558.0
3
3808.0
4
4094.0
5
4379.0
6
4641.0
7
4946.0
8
5217.0
9
5450.0

TVD (ft) SS
3178.0
3558.0
3808.0
4094.0
4379.0
4641.0
4946.0
5217.0
5450.0

Inc (deg)
0.00
0.62
0.40
0.18
0.22
0.13
0.40
0.75
0.40

10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17

5517.0
5611.0
5706.0
5800.0
5895.0
5990.0
6083.0
6177.0

5517.0
5610.8
5704.5
5795.5
5884.4
5968.6
6046.2
6121.4

0.27
5.99
12.10
17.17
23.73
31.36
35.52
38.23

Roughness
Geothermal profile
Heat transfer coefficient

18
19
20

6271.0
6366.0
6458.0

6193.6
6263.9
6331.3

41.38
43.11
42.77

Well Design/Tubing Size

21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
30

6555.0
6650.0
6744.0
6838.0
6932.0
7026.0
7121.0
7215.0
7307.0
7324.0

6402.7
6472.1
6539.7
6607.4
6676.6
6747.3
6818.9
6888.4
6954.5
6966.5

42.43
43.71
44.23
43.68
41.46
40.98
41.33
43.20
44.93
45.52

8420.0
8520.0
8620.0
8720.0
8770.8
8820.0
8920.0
9020.0
9045.2
9074.0
9124.4
9220.0
9285.3
9320.0
9420.0
9520.0
9620.0
9720.0
9820.0
9920.0
10020.0
10120.0
10220.0
10271.4
10320.0
10370.4
10420.0
10520.0
10620.0
10720.0
10820.0
10920.0
11020.0
11120.0
11220.0
11264.1

Summary Profile

PI@PSSS
Initial Pavg
Initial GOR
T@midperfs

60
4262
589.57
146

SSSV
Depth ML (ft)

2300

ID (in)
Length (ft)*
TVD SS (ft)

4.56
9.72
5478.0

AHD ft (SS)
3545
5545
5576.72
10576.72
14019.3

ID (in)
4.892
5.921
4.562
5.921
4.892

bbl/day psia
psia
scf/bbl
F

0.0018
Linear between reservoir and seabed
2 Btu/hr ft2/F

OD (in)
6
7.191
7.99
7.191
6.05

Length (ft)
45
2000
31.72
5000
3442.6

Description
Tubing Hanger
Tubing
SSSV*
Tubing
Excluder Screens

Section 2 Appendix 2A Well Design Basis FDP Rev 5

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 21 of 25

31-December-2004

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Unrestricted

702 Wells (contd)


702p10
Well Trajectory
MD(ft) SS

TVD (ft) SS

Inc (deg)

31
32
33
34
35
36
37
38
39
40
41
42
43
44
45
46
47
48
49
50
51
52
53
54
55
56
57
58
59
60
61
62
63
64
65
66
67
68
69
70
71
72
73
74
75
76
77
78
79
80
81
82
83
84
85
86
87
88
89
90
91
92
93
94
95
96
97
98
99
100

6982.0
7047.0
7112.1
7176.1
7237.5
7294.5
7348.2
7396.9
7440.7
7479.2
7514.6
7549.1
7582.9
7615.5
7647.0
7678.2
7709.3
7741.5
7773.8
7805.3
7826.3
7834.8
7863.7
7894.7
7925.7
7956.6
7987.6
8018.6
8049.5
8080.5
8111.5
8142.4
8173.4
8204.4
8235.3
8266.3
8297.3
8328.2
8359.2
8390.2
8421.1
8452.1
8483.1
8514.0
8545.0
8576.0
8607.0
8624.9
8634.3
8637.9
8649.8
8667.3
8688.9
8701.9
8706.3
8706.3
8706.6
8707.0
8707.3
8707.6
8707.9
8708.2
8708.5
8708.8
8709.2
8709.5
8709.8
8710.1
8710.4
8710.7

45.05
46.23
46.23
48.14
51.23
54.13
57.04
60.57
64.54
67.03
68.73
68.29
69.52
70.31
70.60
71.01
70.31
69.68
70.56
70.34
70.68
71.96
71.96
71.96
71.96
71.96
71.96
71.96
71.96
71.96
71.96
71.96
71.96
71.96
71.96
71.96
71.96
71.96
71.96
71.96
71.96
71.96
71.96
71.96
71.96
71.96
71.96
71.96
71.96
71.96
71.96
75.03
80.01
85.00
89.82
89.82
89.82
89.82
89.82
89.82
89.82
89.82
89.82
89.82
89.82
89.82
89.82
89.82
89.82
89.82

7346.0
7439.0
7533.0
7627.0
7722.0
7816.0
7911.0
8005.0
8100.0
8194.0
8288.0
8382.0
8476.0
8571.0
8665.0
8760.0
8854.0
8948.0
9043.0
9137.0
9200.0
9226.5
9320.0
9420.0
9520.0
9620.0
9720.0
9820.0
9920.0
10020.0
10120.0
10220.0
10320.0
10420.0
10520.0
10620.0
10720.0
10820.0
10920.0
11020.0
11120.0
11220.0
11320.0
11420.0
11520.0
11620.0
11720.0
11778.1
11808.3
11820.0
11858.3
11920.0
12020.0
12120.0
12216.9
12220.0
12320.0
12420.0
12520.0
12620.0
12720.0
12820.0
12920.0
13020.0
13120.0
13220.0
13320.0
13420.0
13520.0
13620.0

Section 2 Appendix 2A Well Design Basis FDP Rev 5

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 22 of 25

31-December-2004

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Unrestricted

702 Wells (contd)


702p10
Well Trajectory
MD(ft) SS

TVD (ft) SS

Inc (deg)

101
102
103
104

8711.0
8711.4
8711.7
8712.0

89.82
89.82
89.82
89.82

702p4
Well Trajectory
MD(ft) SS
WD
3568.0
2
3915.0
3
4189.0

TVD (ft) SS
3568.0
3915.0
4189.0

Inc (deg)
0.00
0.22
0.18

4
5
6
7
8
9
10

4470.0
4748.0
5027.0
5317.0
5599.0
5791.0
5905.0

4470.0
4748.0
5027.0
5317.0
5599.0
5791.0
5905.0

0.18
0.97
0.13
0.22
0.22
0.26
0.99

11
12
13
14
15

6002.0
6097.0
6191.0
6289.0
6383.0

6001.9
6096.9
6190.8
6288.8
6382.8

1.41
1.92
1.62
1.73
1.85

16
17
18
19
20

6477.0
6571.0
6659.0
6758.0
6848.0

6476.7
6570.5
6658.0
6756.1
6844.6

2.41
5.03
6.54
8.85
12.39

21
22
23
24
25
26
27
28
29
30
31
32
33
34
35
36
37
38
39
40
41
42
43
44
45
46
47
48
49
50
51
52
53
54
55
56
57
58
59
60
61
62

6945.0
7039.0
7132.0
7225.0
7299.0
7320.0
7349.0
7420.0
7520.0
7620.0
7647.8
7720.0
7820.0
7920.0
8020.0
8120.0
8220.0
8320.0
8420.0
8520.0
8620.0
8647.8
8720.0
8820.0
8858.8
8920.0
9020.0
9120.0
9138.7
9220.0
9320.0
9420.0
9520.0
9620.0
9720.0
9820.0
9920.0
9932.8
10020.0
10120.0
10132.8
10220.0

6938.1
7025.9
7109.2
7186.2
7242.8
7258.4
7279.9
7333.7
7413.4
7497.2
7521.1
7583.6
7670.2
7756.8
7843.4
7930.0
8016.6
8103.2
8189.9
8276.5
8363.1
8387.1
8448.5
8529.4
8559.4
8606.1
8682.4
8758.7
8772.9
8833.0
8901.3
8963.1
9017.7
9064.9
9104.2
9135.3
9158.0
9160.3
9175.4
9192.8
9195.0
9207.9

18.48
23.07
29.79
38.13
42.16
42.16
42.16
39.20
35.10
31.09
30.00
30.00
30.00
30.00
30.00
30.00
30.00
30.00
30.00
30.00
30.00
30.00
33.51
38.40
40.30
40.30
40.30
40.30
40.30
44.37
49.37
54.36
59.36
64.36
69.36
74.36
79.36
80.00
80.00
80.00
80.00
83.05

13720.0
13820.0
13920.0
14019.3

Summary Profile
PI@PSSS
Initial Pavg
Initial GOR

70
bbl/day psia
4465 psia
589.57 scf/bbl

T@midperfs

161

SSSV
Depth ML (ft)
ID (in)
Length (ft)*
TVD SS (ft)

2300
4.56
9.72
5868.0

Roughness
Geothermal profile
Heat transfer coefficient

0.0018
Linear between reservoir and seabed
2 Btu//hr ft2/F

Well Design/ Tubing Size


AHD ft (SS)

ID (in)

OD (in)

Length (ft)

Description

3545
5545
5576.72
10576.72
11958.0

4.892
5.921
4.562
5.921
4.892

6
7.191
7.99
7.191
6.05

45
2000
31.72
5000
1381.3

Tubing Hanger
Tubing
SSSV*
Tubing
Excluder Screens

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702 Wells (contd)


702p4
Well Trajectory
MD(ft) SS

TVD (ft) SS

Inc (deg)

63
64
65
66
67
68
69
70
71
72
73
74
75
76
77
78
79
80
81
82
83

9216.9
9219.9
9220.0
9220.7
9221.5
9222.2
9223.0
9223.7
9224.5
9225.2
9226.0
9226.3
9227.6
9234.7
9247.8
9267.0
9268.2
9289.5
9312.0
9334.5
9343.0

86.55
89.57
89.57
89.57
89.57
89.57
89.57
89.57
89.57
89.57
89.57
89.57
87.69
84.19
80.69
77.19
77.00
77.00
77.00
77.00
77.00

Well Trajectory
MD(ft) SS
WD
3276.0
2
5650.0
3
5950.0
4
6695.1
5
9544.7
6
9706.6

TVD (ft) SS
3276.0
5650.0
5949.1
6606.4
8630.0
8745.0

Inc (deg)
0.00
0.00
7.50
44.75
44.75
44.75

9038.6

44.75

Well Trajectory
MD(ft) SS
WD
3278.0
2
5200.0
3
6291.6
4
9332.2

TVD (ft) SS
3278.0
5200.0
6133.9
7896.0

Inc (deg)
0.00
0.00
54.58
54.58

8165.0

54.58

10320.0
10406.2
10420.0
10520.0
10620.0
10720.0
10820.0
10920.0
11020.0
11120.0
11220.0
11266.4
11320.0
11420.0
11520.0
11620.0
11625.5
11720.0
11820.0
11920.0
11958.0

710 Wells

10120.0

Summary Profile
PI@PSSS
Initial Pavg
Initial GOR
T@midperfs

150
4306
1139.2
147

bbl/day psia
psia
scf/bbl
F

Tubing size (I)


AHD ft (SS)
10120

ID (in)
4.892

OD (in)
5 1/2

SSSV
Depth ML (ft)
ID (in)
Length (ft)
TVD SS (ft)

Roughness
Geothermal profile
Heat transfer coefficient

2300
4.56
9.72
5576.0

0.0018
Linear between reservoir and seabed
2

710p2

9796.3

Summary Profile

710p3
Well Trajectory
MD(ft) SS
WD
3278.0
2
5200.0

TVD (ft) SS
3278.0
5200.0

Inc (deg)
0.00
0.00

3
4
5

5874.9
8364.0
8605.0

36.08
36.08
36.08

5921.7
9001.6
9299.8

PI@PSSS
Initial Pavg
Initial GOR
T@midperfs

14
4152
1139.2
128

SSSV
Depth ML (ft)
ID (in)
Length (ft)
TVD SS (ft)

2300
4.56
9.72
5578.0

bbl/day psia
psia
scf/bbl
F

Tubing size (I)


AHD ft (SS)
9796

Roughness
Geothermal profile
Heat transfer coefficient

ID (in)
4.892

OD (in)
5 1/2

0.0018
Linear between reservoir and seabed
2

Summary Profile
Tubing size (I)
AHD ft (SS)
9300

PI@PSSS
Initial Pavg

20
4308

Initial GOR
T@midperfs

1139.2 scf/bbl
139
F

SSSV
Depth ML (ft)
ID (in)

2300
4.56

Roughness
Geothermal profile

0.0018
Linear between reservoir and seabed

Length (ft)
TVD SS (ft)

9.72
5578.0

Heat transfer coefficient

bbl/day psia
psia

ID (in)
4.892

OD (in)
5 1/2

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702 Wells (contd)


710p4
Well Trajectory
MD(ft) SS TVD (ft) SS
Inc (deg)
Combined with 803p1 in a single wellbore
WD
3362.0
3362.0
0.00
2
6150.0
6150.0
0.00
3
6730.0
6705.5
29.00
4
9387.6
9030.0
29.00

Summary Profile
PI@PSSS
Initial Pavg
Initial GOR
T@midperfs

18
4527
1139.2
158

SSSV
Depth ML (ft)
ID (in)
Length (ft)
TVD SS (ft)

2300
4.56
9.72
5662.0

bbl/day psia
psia
scf/bbl
F

Tubing size (I)


AHD ft (SS)
9388

Roughness
Geothermal profile
Heat transfer coefficient

ID (in)
4.892

OD (in)
5 1/2

0.0018
Linear between reservoir and seabed
2

803 Wells
803p1
Well Trajectory
MD(ft) SS
WD
3362.0
2
6150.0
3
6730.0
4
9387.6
5
10770.0
6
10873.3
7
10988.5
8
12379.0

TVD (ft) SS
3362.0
6150.0
6705.5
9030.0
9910.9
9930.0
9949.6
10165.0

Inc (deg)
0.00
0.00
29.00
29.00
79.31
79.31
81.09
81.09

803p2
Well Trajectory
MD(ft) SS
WD
3195.0
2
5500.0
3
6400.0
4
15607.7
5
16007.7
6
16465.8

TVD (ft) SS
3195.0
5500.0
6310.3
12821.1
13049.4
13243.0

Inc (deg)
0.00
0.00
45.00
45.00
65.00
65.00

Summary Profile
PI@PSSS
Initial Pavg
Initial GOR
T@midperfs

18
5142
1447
176

SSSV
Depth ML (ft)
ID (in)
Length (ft)
TVD SS (ft)

2300
4.56
9.72
5662.0

Tubing size (I)


AHD ft (SS)
12379

Roughness
Geothermal profile
Heat transfer coefficient

ID (in)
4.892

OD (in)
5 1/2

0.0018
Linear
2

Summary Profile
PI@PSSS
Initial Pavg
Initial GOR
T@midperfs

803p3
Well Trajectory
MD(ft) SS
WD
3359.0
2
5700.0
3
6684.6
4
7584.6

TVD (ft) SS
3359.0
5700.0
6684.6
7494.9

Inc (deg)
0.00
0.00
0.00
45.00

5
6
7
8
9

10437.8
10675.1
10805.0
10955.0
11401.0

45.00
30.00
30.00
30.00
30.00

4
5176
1447
179

bbl/day psia
psia
scf/bbl
F

Tubing size (I)


AHD ft (SS)
16466

ID (in)
4.892

OD (in)
5 1/2

SSSV
Depth ML (ft)
ID (in)
Length (ft)
TVD SS (ft)

11746.5
12046.5
12196.5
12369.7
12884.7

bbl/day psia
psia
scf/bbl
F

Roughness
Geothermal profile
Heat transfer coefficient

2300
4.56
9.72
5495.0

0.0018
Linear
2

Summary Profile
PI@PSSS
Initial Pavg
Initial GOR
T@midperfs

70
5381
956
198

SSSV
Depth ML (ft)
ID (in)
Length (ft)
TVD SS (ft)

2300
4.56
9.72
5659.0

bbl/day psia
psia
scf/bbl
F

Tubing size (I)


AHD ft (SS)
12885

Roughness
Geothermal profile
Heat transfer coefficient

ID (in)
4.892

OD (in)
5 1/2

0.0018
Linear
2

Section 2 Appendix 2A Well Design Basis FDP Rev 5

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Section 3
Hydrate Remediation Guidelines

Table of Contents
1.0

2.0

3.0

4.0

INTRODUCTION...........................................................................................................3
1.1

Start-up..............................................................................................................3

1.2

Shutdown...........................................................................................................3

1.3

Steady-state.......................................................................................................4

HYDRATE CHARACTERISTICS OF THE BONGA FLUIDS ........................................6


2.1

Hydrate Curves..................................................................................................6

2.2

Methanol Treatment Curves...............................................................................9

2.3

Hydrate Plug Dissociation Times .....................................................................12

HYDRATE FORMATION RISK FOR SUBSEA SYSTEMS .........................................13


3.1

Start-up............................................................................................................16

3.2

Steady-state.....................................................................................................18

3.3

Shutdown.........................................................................................................18

3.4

Aborted Start-up ..............................................................................................19

HYDRATE PLUG DETECTION AND REMEDIATION ................................................20


4.1

Flowlines/Risers...............................................................................................21

4.2

Wellbore Jumper and Manifold.........................................................................29

4.3

Wellbore/Tree (Upstream of Inhibitor Injection Point) .......................................33

4.4

Umbilicals ........................................................................................................36

4.5

Gas Lift Riser ...................................................................................................38

4.6

Water Injection Wells .......................................................................................43

TABLES
Table 3.1 Hydrate Temperatures for the Bonga Fluids ........................................................8
Table 3.2 Hydrate Dissociation Pressure at 4.4C (40F) ....................................................9
FIGURES
Figure 3.1 Hydrate Curves for the Bonga Fluids ..................................................................7
Figure 3.2 Maximum Treatable Flowrate for the 702 Oil with a
Methanol Rate of 14gpm ..................................................................................10
Figure 3.3 Methanol Volume Requirement for 702 Fluid....................................................10

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Table of Contents (contd)


FIGURES
Figure 3.4 Maximum Treatable Flowrate for the 710 Oil with a
Methanol Rate of 14gpm ..................................................................................11
Figure 3.5 Methanol Volume Requirements for the 710/740 Fluid .....................................11
Figure 3.6 Hydrate Remediation Times for the 702 Reservoir Fluid,
Dashed Curves 12in PIP Flowline, Solid Curves 10in PIP Flowline ..................12
Figure 3.7 Hydrate Remediation Times for the 710 Reservoir Fluid,
Dashed Curves 12in PIP Flowline, Solid Curves 10in PIP Flowline ..................13
Figure 3.8 Risk Identification for Hydrate Plugging in Different Parts of the
Subsea System for Bonga................................................................................15
Figure 3.9 Schematic of Hydrate Plug in Flowline (Except PFL 03/04) ..............................22
Figure 3.10 Schematic of Hydrate Plug in Flowline (PFL 03/04) ........................................23
Figure 3.11 Schematic of Hydrate Plug in Riser ................................................................23
Figure 3.12 Remediation Procedure for Hydrate Plug in Flowline ......................................27
Figure 3.13 Remediation Procedure for Hydrate Plug in Riser...........................................28
Figure 3.14 Schematic of Hydrate Plate in Jumper............................................................29
Figure 3.15 Remediation Procedure for Hydrate Plug in Jumper/Manifold.........................32
Figure 3.16 Schematic of Hydrate Plug in Wellbore...........................................................33
Figure 3.17 Remediation Procedure for a Hydrate Plug in the Wellbore ............................35
Figure 3.18 Schematic of Hydrate Plug in Umbilical Line...................................................36
Figure 3.19 Remediation Procedure for a Hydrate Plug in an Umbilical.............................37
Figure 3.20 Schematic of Hydrate Plug in Riser Gas Lift System
(Between Methanol Line and Flowline) ............................................................38
Figure 3.21 Schematic of Hydrate Plug in Riser Gas Lift System
(Between Methanol Line and GLR Topsides) ..................................................39
Figure 3.22 Remediation Procedure for a Hydrate Plug in the Gas Lift Riser
(Between Methanol Line and the Flowline) ......................................................41
Figure 3.23 Remediation Procedure for a Hydrate Plug in the Gas Lift Riser
(Between Methanol Line and Topsides)...........................................................42
Figure 3.24 Schematic of Hydrate Plug in Water Injection Line .........................................44
APPENDICES
Appendix 3A Pressure Tags ..............................................................................................45
Appendix 3B Case Studies ................................................................................................49
Appendix 3C Nomenclature...............................................................................................63

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INTRODUCTION
Bonga is a deepwater development offshore Nigeria in Block OML 118,
in approximately 1000m water depth. Shell Nigeria E&P (SNEPCO) will operate
Bonga in a joint venture with Esso (20%), Elf (12.5%) and Agip (12.5%). Bonga is
being developed as a subsea network with 1.9 to 9.2km tiebacks to a permanently
moored Floating Production, Storage, and Offloading vessel (FPSO). Peak
production rates are anticipated at 225,000 barrels of oil per day, 170MMSCF of gas
per day (including recycled riser lift gas) and 100,000 barrels of produced water
per day. Reservoir pressures will be maintained via subsea waterflood wells with up
to 300,000 barrels water per day injection capacity.
Bonga consists of four reservoirs (690, 702, 710/740 and 803) with roughly half
of the total reserves in the 702 reservoir. The production system contains subsea
trees enabling Surface Controlled Subsurface Safety Valves (SCSSVs),
production chokes, and chemical injection valves connected via short well jumpers
to five subsea production manifolds. The subsea wells are produced through four
pairs of piggable dual pipe-in-pipe flowlines, with externally insulated steel catenary
risers. Each flowline is connected to a dedicated gas lift riser delivering up to
25MMSCF per day.
One of the biggest flow assurance challenges at Bonga is hydrate control. Bonga is
expected to operate under the philosophy of hydrate avoidance during all phases of
operation start-up, shutdown and steady state. This is achieved by the following
operational strategies:

1.1

Start-up
The strategy is to hot oil the flowlines to protect them from hydrates. The strategy for
the trees, well jumpers and manifolds is to inject methanol/Low Dosage Hydrate
Inhibitor (LDHI). In the absence of any methanol injection downhole, the well is
ramped up as quickly as practicable (notionally 5000 to 7000bpd, depending on
water-cut and pressure) such that the flowing wellhead temperature is greater than
the hydrate dissociation temperature (approximately 24C (75F), but exact
temperature depends on fluid properties and pressure) within 30 minutes to 1 hour.

1.2

Shutdown
The strategy is to blow down the flowlines to a pressure below the hydrate
dissociation pressure at 4.4C (40F) before the cooldown period has expired
(notionally 12 hours following production at minimum flowline flowrates of
10,000bpd). The well jumpers and manifolds are displaced with methanol, before
the cooldown time has expired, to remove hydrateable fluids and replace them with
methanol. The wellbore is also bullheaded with methanol to the SCSSV in order to
protect it from hydrates during a shut-in that lasts longer than 2 days1.

Due to the bare tubing in the wellbore, cooldown times are much larger when the well has been operating at
steady state. Cooldown times are typically of the order of 2 days and hence bullheading must be done only if
shutdown is expected to last more than 2 days. However, the first 100ft of the wellbore must be treated immediately
upon shut-in, since the cooldown time in this section is limited.

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Steady-state
The strategy is to rely on the heat content of the system to avoid hydrates.
The system flows well above hydrate forming temperatures and in fact flows at a
temperature that guarantees at least 12 hours to cool down to the hydrate
temperature during a shut-in.
However, in spite of the above philosophies, there are four major reasons which
makes hydrate control at Bonga particularly challenging. These are:
Low Water Salinity

The expected produced water salinity at Bonga is ~3wt% while typical Gulf of
Mexico (GoM) produced water is between 6 to 22wt%. Assuming an average
of 10wt% salinity, the typical GoM system has a subcooling that is 3 to 4C
(6 to 7F) less than Bonga, which means the system needs to be warmed 3 to
4C (6 to 7F) less than Bonga to move the system outside the hydrate region.
Alternatively, the pressure requirement during blow down is increased by 7 to
10bar (100 to 150psi) for produced brines with a salinity of 10wt%. This has
important implications for Bonga since current blowdown calculations with and
without riser base gas lift indicate that the low blowdown pressure requirement
challenges the limits of the blowdown system (transient report on blowdown
has shown that the minimum blowdown pressure is 10bar2bar (150psi 30psi)2.
Kinetics of Hydrate Formation in Bonga

The kinetics of hydrate formation is difficult to quantify since experimental data


for black oil systems is limited. There are a number of different factors that
determine the rate at which hydrates will form, including fluid properties,
water cut and flow regime. In the case of the flow loop tests with the Bonga
crude, plugging times were all very rapid. In all tests, the fluids were cooled
from higher temperatures down into the hydrate region, and within a few
degrees of cooling into the hydrate region the system was plugged.
The formation of hydrates was so rapid that the waves in the oil phase
(the system was operating in the wavy-stratified flow regime, with a water/oil
emulsion) actually froze in place. This rapid hydrate formation has not been
observed previously. While there are no other experiments done at the same
conditions as these for Bonga, tests with other crude oil systems in the flow
loop were more difficult to plug.

System Limitations
Bonga is expected to start producing water within 18 to 24 months of first oil
and up to a water-cut of 80 to 90%. In order to completely prevent hydrate
formation at such high water rates, methanol injection rates of nearly 60 to
90gpm are required. However, only 14gpm per well can be injected at Bonga
(and it is certainly not practical to inject at rates of 60 to 90gpm). When
operating at such high water rates, Bonga depends on a unique
never-before-used methanol/LDHI cocktail to prevent hydrate formation in the
trees, jumpers and manifolds during start-up. Although, laboratory tests have
indicated that this combination will work at Bonga, it must be understood that
this strategy has not been field tested.

Wade Schoppa Bonga Dynamic Flow Assurance Analysis Evaluation of Conceptual Design, February 2001.

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Lack of Operating Experience at Bonga


Experience has indicated that new facilities are prone to a lot of aborted
start-ups and extended shutdowns during their first few years of operation
(eg Auger had nearly 253 unplanned shutdowns and 79 planned shutdowns
during its first 22 months of operation, while Mars had nearly 112 unplanned
shutdowns and 29 planned shutdowns during its first 8 months of operations)3.
The subsea system is most vulnerable to hydrates during start-up and
shutdown (especially before steady-state is attained), and the probability of
operational errors is greatest during these transient events.

In view of the above reasons, hydrate formation/plugging is a credible risk at Bonga


and hence, maximum precautions must be taken to ensure hydrate free operations
at Bonga.
The main purposes of this document are to:

Provide guidance to operations and surveillance staff on how to identify hydrate


formation in the subsea system

Provide the first steps of blockage remediation to operators/surveillance staff in


case a hydrate blockage forms so that operators/surveillance staff can safely
secure the system and/or prevent the problem from getting worse

Define safe procedures to start remediation of the subsea hydrate blockage


before expert help can be summoned

Provide examples from other fields (within and outside Shell) on how hydrates
blockages were formed and were remediated along with important lessons learned

Provide an evergreen document that can be updated when operating conditions


on the field significantly change (eg when LDHI comes on, LDHI charts should
be added) and to include any Bonga-specific hydrate incidents

This document is not meant to:

Provide detailed procedures on how to remediate hydrates from various parts of


the subsea system. (We view hydrate plugging as an abnormal event requiring
expert help. Each event is somewhat different and hence routine procedures
cannot be written. Although some initial procedures can be initiated from the
FPSO, we strongly recommend summoning expert help to complete remediation
of a hydrate plug)

Provide operating strategies to avoid hydrates in the Bonga system. These will
be covered in the POPMs, and control system warnings and interlocks will cover
some of the critical operations. In fact, this document assumes that the reader is
intimately familiar with Bongas operating strategies especially with respect to
hydrate management

Bypass normal operating procedures (POPMs during normal field operations).


Some of the recommendations given in this document may be in conflict with
the POPMs and should only be followed if flow has stopped abruptly and
hydrate formation is a strong suspect

Sada Iyer Analysis for Full Thermal Cycles for Bonga Over a 20-year Period, April 2003.

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This document is structured as follows:

2.0

Paragraph 2.0 describes the hydrate characteristics of the Bonga fluids.


This includes hydrate curves, methanol treatment curves, blowdown pressures,
and hydrate dissociation times

Paragraph 3.0 describes the hydrate formation risks for various parts of the
subsea system

Paragraph 4.0 describes remediation methodologies for each section of the


subsea system and contains guidelines for remediating hydrates once a plug
is formed

Appendix 3A gives a table of all relevant pressure tags that are of interest in
terms of hydrate detection and remediation

Appendix 3B describes several different case studies involving hydrate plug


formation and remediation. The case studies used were chosen because of their
general similarity to Bonga

Appendix 3C gives a listing of all abbreviations used in this report

HYDRATE CHARACTERISTICS OF THE BONGA FLUIDS


This paragraph is intended as a summary of the information used in determining the
hydrate curves and methanol requirements4.
The hydrate curves are presented for all fluids to give some indication of the relative
hydrate risk of each of the different oil systems. Methanol rates are only included for
the 702 oil (best-case) and the 710 oil (worst-case) to bracket the potential methanol
requirements at Bonga.

2.1

Hydrate Curves
The hydrate curves define the stability of hydrates in the Bonga system. The hydrate
curves are dependent on the salinity of the produced water. Hydrate curves are
included for a produced brine with a salinity of 3wt%. Due to the waterflood,
the expected salinity of the produced water is about 3wt%, hence Figure 3.1 and
Table 3.1 should be used in determining if the system is operating in the
hydrate region.
For example, if the operating conditions are 200bar (2900psi) and 20C (68F),
all four fluid systems are in the hydrate region (refer to Figure 3.1). If the pressure is
decreased to 150bar (2175psi), the 690 and 702 fluids are no longer in the hydrate
stability region, but the 803 and 710 fluids are still in the hydrate region. If the
pressure is further reduced to 100bar (1450psi), the conditions are such that all
fluids are now out of the hydrate region. Alternatively, if the temperature is increased
from 20C (68F) to 25C (77F) and the pressure remains constant at 200bar
(2900psi), all four fluid systems are in the non-hydrate region.

For a more detailed description, refer to Peters, D, et al Bonga Hydrate Risk Assessment and Management
Strategy, report OG.03.80057, 2003.

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Temperature (F)
42

32

52

62

72

82
5000

690
300

4500

720
4000
803
3500

710/740
Hydrate
Stability
Region

200

3000
2500

150

2000

Pressure (psi)

Pressure (bar)

250

1500

100
Non-hydrate
Region

50

1000
500
0

0
0

10

15

20

25

30

Temperature (C)

OPRM20030302D_063.ai

Figure 3.1 Hydrate Curves for the Bonga Fluids

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Pressure
(bar)

690
HDT
(C)

702
HDT
(C)

710/740
HDT
(C)

803
HDT
(C)

8.6

0.1

-0.4

3.1

1.6

11.6

2.2

1.7

5.2

3.8

15.7

4.3

3.8

7.3

6.0

21.1

6.4

6.0

9.5

8.2

28.5

8.5

8.1

11.6

10.3

38.4

10.6

10.3

13.6

12.5

51.7

12.7

12.4

15.6

14.5

69.7

14.6

14.4

17.5

16.5

94.0

16.5

16.3

19.3

18.3

126.7

18.3

18.1

20.9

20.0

170.7

20.0

19.9

22.5

21.6

230.2

21.2

21.5

24.1

23.2

310.3

22.5

22.6

25.5

25.0

Pressure
(bar)

690
HDT
(F)

702
HDT
(F)

710/740
HDT
(F)

803
HDT
(F)

125

32.1

31.2

37.7

34.8

169

35.9

35.0

41.4

38.8

227

39.7

38.9

45.2

42.7

306

43.5

42.7

49.0

46.7

413

47.4

46.6

52.8

50.6

556

51.1

50.5

56.5

54.4

750

54.8

54.2

60.1

58.2

1011

58.4

57.9

63.6

61.7

1363

61.7

61.3

66.7

64.9

1837

64.9

64.6

69.7

68.0

2476

68.0

67.7

72.4

70.8

3338

70.2

70.7

75.3

73.8

4500

72.5

72.7

77.9

76.9

Table 3.1 Hydrate Temperatures for the Bonga Fluids

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Unrestricted

Blowdown and Plug Remediation Pressures


An important aspect of the hydrate equilibriums curve is the Hydrate Dissociation
Pressure (HDP) at the ambient seafloor temperature of 4.4C (40F). This is the
pressure that will determine the blowdown requirement and the hydrate plug
remediation pressure.
One of the key components to hydrate control at Bonga is the ability to blow down
the flowlines and move the flowline conditions outside of the hydrate region. Table 3.2
shows the hydrate equilibrium pressure at 4.4C (40F).
Well

HDP
(psi)

HDP
(bar)

690

202

13.9

702

216

14.9

710/740

130

9.0

803

162

11.1

Table 3.2 Hydrate Dissociation Pressure at 4.4C (40F)5


The hydrate dissociation pressure at 4.4C (40F) is also important in the process of
hydrate plug remediation. The flowline pressure must be reduced below the HDP of
the particular fluid in order for the hydrate plug to melt. During plug remediation,
the flowline pressure should be reduced as low as possible to increase the rate at
which the plug melts. If a flowline has fluids from more than one reservoir, then use
the fluid with the lowest HDP.

2.2

Methanol Treatment Curves


During early life, the hydrate strategy is to treat all produced water with methanol.
Figures 3.2 and 3.4 show the highest treatable water cut that can be protected with
the 702 and the 710 fluids. Figures 3.3 and 3.5 give the methanol requirements in a
more general format that can be applied to any flowrate. The minimum flowrate
during start-up is either 5000blpd or 7000blpd, depending on the well. At a given
pressure and flowrate, these figures can be used to determine how much water can
be treated. This is important in determining when to switch from the methanol-only
strategy to the methanol/Kinetic Hydrate Inhibitor (KHI) strategy.
For example, if the 702 fluid is being produced at a rate of 5000blpd, the flowline
pressure is 150bar (2175psi) and the water cut is greater than 20%, then methanol
alone (at 14gpm) is not enough to protect against hydrate formation and it is time to
switch to the methanol/KHI strategy.
Similarly, if the flowline is producing the 710 fluid at a rate of 5000blpd and a
pressure of 150bar (2175psi), then the highest water cut that can be treated is 17%.

The hydrate equilibrium values for fresh water have been used. These pressures are required for hydrate plug
remediation but give slightly conservative estimates for the blowdown pressure required to prevent hydrate
formation.

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Pressure (psi)

Maximum Treatable % Water Cut

70

500

1000

1500

2000

2500

3000

3500

4000

4500

60
50

Fluids cannot
be treated with
methanol alone

40
30
5000blpd

20
Fluids can be
treated with
methanol

10

7000blpd

0
0

50

100

150

200

250

300

Pressure (bar)
OPRM20030302D_049.ai

Figure 3.2 Maximum Treatable Flowrate for the 702 Oil


with a Methanol Rate of 14gpm
0.80

m3 Methanol/m3 Water

0.70
0.60
0.50
0.40
0.30
0.20
0.10
0

10

15

20

25

30

35

40

% Water Cut
34.5bar (500psia)

68.9bar (1000psia)

241.3bar (3500psia)

317.2bar (4600psia)

103.4bar (1500psia)

OPRM20030302D_050.ai

Figure 3.3 Methanol Volume Requirement for 702 Fluid

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500

Unrestricted

1000

1500

2000

2500

3000

3500

4000

4500

45

Maximum Treatable % Water Cut

40
35
Fluids Cannot be
Treated with
Methanol Alone

30
25
20

5000blpd
15
10
7000blpd

Fluids Can be
Treated with
Methanol

5
0

100

150

200

250

300

Pressure (bar)
OPRM20030302D_071.ai

Figure 3.4 Maximum Treatable Flowrate for the 710 Oil


with a Methanol Rate of 14gpm
0.80

m3 Methanol/m3 Water

0.70

0.60

0.50

0.40

0.30

0.20

0.10
0

10

15

20

25

30

35

40

% Water Cut
34.5bar (500psia)

68.9bar (1000psia)

241.3bar (3500psia)

317.2bar (4600psia)

103.4bar (1500psia)

OPRM20030302D_064.ai

Figure 3.5 Methanol Volume Requirements for the 710/740 Fluid

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2.3

Unrestricted

Hydrate Plug Dissociation Times


Figures 3.6 and 3.7 are intended to give approximate hydrate plug remediation
times as a function of the pressure. In this case, approximate means an order of
magnitude estimate. The intent of these predictions is to indicate if the plug melting
time is days, weeks or months. This model has been compared with available
information on hydrate plug removal and was found to give reasonable estimates of
the plug melting time6.
If the predicted dissociation time is a week, then the plug can be expected to take
1 week, plus or minus a few days. If the plug is predicted to take a month to melt,
then the plug can be expected to take 1 month, plus or minus a week.
These predictions are the amount of time required to establish pressure
communication across the plug, not the time required to completely melt the plug.
The two-sided depressurisation case (applicable generally to looped flowlines)
assumes that there is a small (~3.5bar (50psi)) pressure drop across the plug.
The one-sided case (applicable generally to wellbore jumpers and wellbores)
assumes a pressure drop of > 70bar (1000psi) across the plug. These figures were
generated for the Bonga flowlines (10in and 12in), but similar results were obtained
for the melting times of hydrate plugs in a line with a 5in diameter.
As was the case with the methanol predictions, the 702 and 710 reservoir fluids are
used in the prediction of the hydrate remediation times. These two fluids bracket the
possible remediation times that are expected for Bonga.

Downstream Pressure (psia)


30

87

100

113

126

139

152

165

178

191

204

Hydrate Dissociation Pressure

Remediation Time (Days)

25

217

20

15

10

0
8

10

11

12

13

14

15

Downstream Pressure (bar)


1-sided dissociation
2-sided dissociation
OPRM20030302D_051.ai

Figure 3.6 Hydrate Remediation Times for the 702 Reservoir Fluid,
Dashed Curves 12in PIP Flowline, Solid Curves 10in PIP Flowline

Walsh et al Hydrate plug dissociation model, EP 2001-3018, June 2001.

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Downstream Pressure (psia)


44

54

64

74

84

94

104

114

124

134

30

Hydrate Dissociation Pressure

Remedlation Time (Days)

25

20

15

10

0
3

Downstream Pressure (bar)


1-sided dissociation

2-sided dissociation
OPRM20030302D_065.ai

Figure 3.7 Hydrate Remediation Times for the 710 Reservoir Fluid,
Dashed Curves 12in PIP Flowline, Solid Curves 10in PIP Flowline

3.0

HYDRATE FORMATION RISK FOR SUBSEA SYSTEMS


When assessing the hydrate risk in the subsea system, there is an important
distinction to be made between hydrate formation and the formation of a hydrate
plug. In an uninhibited system, if the subsea temperature and pressure are in the
hydrate formation region, hydrates will form. The formation of a solid hydrate plug is
not predictable but, from laboratory and field experience, it is most likely to occur
during a restart. If a plug is not formed immediately upon restart, continued
operation inside the hydrate region greatly increases the risk that sufficient hydrates
will accumulate and lead to the formation of a plug. How long the system can
operate in the hydrate region before a plug is formed depends on a number of
factors, including the kinetics of hydrate formation and the stickiness of the hydrate
particles that are formed. Unfortunately there is no accurate means of predicting
when the hydrate particles will accumulate into a plug, but laboratory testing with the
Bonga fluids showed the rapid formation of hydrate plugs once the system was
inside the hydrate region.
There are several examples of GoM systems that operate in the hydrate region
without forming hydrate plugs even though hydrates are formed. However, these
examples are typically gas condensate systems. For example, at South-east Tahoe,
the formation of hydrates is detected as an increase in the pressure drop across the
flowline. Once the pressure drop increases sufficiently, the production rate is
curtailed while the methanol pumps continue to run at full flowrates to flush the
hydrates out of the flowline. This strategy can be used at South-east Tahoe since
production is at the end of the field life and the consequences of forming a plug are
not severe (limited loss of production).

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The same is not true of oil systems. Currently, the steady-state operating strategy
for oil systems is to operate outside of the hydrate region, thus there are no similar
cases to compare. Most plugs in oil systems occur during restart after the system
remained in the hydrate region for some amount of time. Also, based on flowloop
tests, the plugs that are formed in an oil system usually occur much more
catastrophically and the typical warning signs observed in gas condensate systems
(such as gradual increase in pressure drop) are not observed. The Bonga fluids
have shown rapid failure times in testing and hence it is assumed that the formation
of hydrates will quite quickly lead to the formation of a plug. Therefore, the
philosophy at Bonga is for hydrate avoidance during all phases of operation by
keeping the operating conditions outside of the hydrate formation region (or by
delaying the formation of hydrates for at least 12 hours by using LDHI in mid-life to
late-life). For the special case of the wellbore during start-up (without downhole
inhibitor injection capability at Bonga), the risk of hydrate plug formation is
minimised by bullheading the upper wellbore with methanol (or methanol/LDHI)
after shut-in.
There is some evidence from a North Sea oil field that signals are provided during
plug formation and prior to complete blockage in an oil system. As was the case with
South-east Tahoe, in the North Sea oil field after significant build-up in the line
pressure drop, the methanol rate was increased and the hydrate restrictions cleared
from the flowline. The methanol rate was reduced to initial levels and the cycle
repeated. However, several key differences exist between this example and Bonga,
in particular, the water cut (~10%) was much lower than is expected at Bonga.
So, while it may be possible to observe early signs of hydrate plug formation, this
will not be the operating strategy used at Bonga. With Bonga production, it is
assumed that any hydrate formation will rapidly lead to the formation of a plug.
It will be crucial to monitor the temperatures and pressures along the subsea system
in order to determine where hydrates are forming. This will allow the location of
a hydrate plug to be isolated to the riser, flowline, jumper or wellbore.
These temperature and pressure measurements can be monitored using the various
sensors on the subsea system. Appendix 3A shows the tag numbers for the various
pressure sensors in different parts of the subsea system for different flowline loops,
trees, manifolds and gas lift risers. The tags for the temperature sensors are not
included since they have only a limited usefulness in detecting hydrate plugs.
Before writing any paragraph on remediation, it is important to assess the risk of
hydrate formation on various parts of the Bonga subsea system during all stages of
operation. Figure 3.8 shows the risk associated with each part of the subsea
system. However, the temperature readings are vitally important in determining if the
system is in the hydrate formation region.

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Event
Subsea System

Start-up

Steady
State

Shutdown

Aborted
Start-up

Wellbore
Trees
Well Jumper
Production Manifold
Flowlines
Riser
Gas lift Sled/Umbilicals
Umbilicals
Water Injection Flowlines
Water Injection Tees
Water Injection Trees
High Risk

Medium Risk

Low Risk

Figure 3.8 Risk Identification for Hydrate Plugging in Different Parts of the
Subsea System for Bonga
For the purposes of this document, we define the risk levels as follows:
High Risk
The system design itself does not guarantee protection against hydrates but hydrate
control is achieved by a combination of design and active strategies. Examples
include the tree and jumper where the addition of methanol/LDHI is used to prevent
hydrates during start-up. If a methanol pump fails, it could lead to the formation of
hydrates. Another example is that for the wellbore, there is not the ability to treat
with methanol/LDHI to prevent hydrates during start-up and instead a strategy of
minimising the time of operation within the hydrate region by rapid production ramp
up and outrunning the formation of a hydrate plug is used.
Medium Risk
The system design protects itself from hydrates, but that protection could be eroded
by operational decisions. An example of this is deciding to start up into a warm
flowline (without hot-oiling) that has partially cooled down. An aborted start-up at this
stage would leave the flowline in a state with an unknown cooldown time and
possibly allow the liquids in the system to cool inside the hydrate region prior to
following the procedure for a normal aborted start-up.

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Low Risk
The system design protects itself from hydrates for normal operating conditions.
For example, the Bonga subsea system is designed such that during steady state
operation, all sections are outside of the hydrate region and that upon a shut-in,
there is sufficient cooldown time provided by the insulation to give at least 3 hours
during which no hydrate inhibition actions are required.

3.1

Start-up
High Risk
As shown in Figure 3.8, the highest risk during start-up is in the wellbore, tree,
wellbore jumper, manifold and umbilicals. During start-up, these sections are
typically at the coolest temperature and highest pressure in the subsea system.
The highest risk among these sections is the wellbore since the system design does
not include wellbore hydrate inhibitor injection, whereas the tree, manifold and
jumper will be susceptible to hydrate formation if the injection of methanol or
methanol/LDHI fails.
The hydrate risk in the wellbore is difficult to quantify. Prior to the start-up,
the wellbore should have been bullheaded with methanol to prevent any hydrate
from forming during shut-in. Once the system is restarted, there is a fairly lengthy
warm-up time and the wellbore may be operating in the hydrate region for up to
90 minutes1. There is a good chance hydrates will form and be pushed out of the
wellbore to areas of the subsea system that have already been warmed and/or
treated with methanol/LDHI without forming a hydrate plug in the wellbore. The risk
of hydrate formation is high. The risk of forming a hydrate plug is less and is difficult
to quantify. Based on GoM experience, the formation of a hydrate plug in the
wellbore is low if the warm-up times are quick (ie less than 1 hour). However, there
are several key differences between the GoM wells and the Bonga wells that make
the Bonga wells a higher risk. GoM wells typically have Vacuum Insulated Tubing (VIT),
which decreases the warm-up time considerably. An unknown in this process is the
effect of watercut. All testing indicates that the higher the watercut, the higher the
hydrate risk, but there are very few subsea flowlines producing oil at high watercut,
which makes this risk difficult to quantify, hence, the overall risk is marked as high.
There are cases when an oil system (eg Auger and Tahoe) has plugged with
hydrates during start-up. However, both examples are a bit unusual in that very little
produced water was present. At Auger, there may have been some additional
unloading fluids present that increased the total watercut. In both cases, the
systems were shut-in without any hydrate inhibition (since it was assumed the
watercut was too low to form a hydrate plug). Likely hydrates were formed from the
small amounts of water present in the oil stretched throughout the flowline but also
in larger amounts from water settled and accumulated in low spots in the flowline.
Upon restart, these hydrate particles grew to form a plug. This illustrates the need to
protect the system against hydrates even when the watercut is low. As the watercut
is increased, the likelihood of forming hydrates is only increased.7
1

Due to the bare tubing in the wellbore, cooldown times are much larger when the well has been operating at
steady state. Cooldown times are typically of the order of 2 days and hence bullheading must be done only if
shutdown is expected to last more than 2 days. However, the first 100ft of the wellbore must be treated immediately
upon shut-in, since the cooldown time in this section is limited.
7

At Terra Nova, this problem with gas migration only appeared during the first 6 weeks of water injection. However,
Terra Nova has a different water injection strategy (involving alternating periods of injection followed by extended
shut-in) and the properties of the reservoir are different than at Bonga.

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The hydrate risk in the tree, well jumper and manifold is largely mitigated by the use
of chemicals. During early life, methanol can be injected in sufficient quantities to
prevent hydrates, so the only risk here is due to the failure of the methanol pumps.
In this case, there are cold untreated fluids coming from the wellbore (possibly with
hydrates already present) flowing into a cold untreated section with many areas
where water can accumulate and this greatly increases the risk of hydrate plug
formation. If adequate measures are taken to ensure pump reliability, then this risk
is decreased. However, based on the definition of risk, this is considered a high risk
since the insulation alone does not provide protection from hydrates during
restart and transition to steady-state, but instead hydrate mitigation relies upon
chemical treatment.
Similarly, the chemical umbilical lines (especially flying leads) are susceptible to
hydrates due to pressure fluctuations that occur during start-up (eg due to slugging).
This might lead to backing up of chemicals and production fluids inside the umbilical,
and the formation of hydrates.
The water injection trees and upper wellbore are also considered to be high risk.
Since the water injectors are completed into the oil zone (and can flow under their
own pressure), gas can migrate past the SCSSV (towards the tree) during an
extended shut-in and can form hydrates with the water in the well. This risk is
greatest when waterflood has just started for the first time and the well is shut in
within a few days of initial start-up. This is because the gas front in the reservoir
would not have been pushed away from the wellbore and hence the gas will tend to
migrate back into the wellbore. As more and more water is injected into the
reservoir, the risk continues to decrease as the gas front in the reservoir is pushed
away from the water injection wellbore (hence, the gas takes much longer to migrate
back into the wellbore). This risk is difficult to quantify since the probability of gas
migration into the wellbore is unknown. Any hydrates that are formed will be a result
of these gas bubbles migrating up the wellbore. In the absence of any agitation, a
column of hydrate bubbles will be established. With time, these hydrate bubbles will
be pushed up to the tree where they will accumulate and may also form deposits.
The fate of these bubbles is open to speculation, but could easily collapse during the
shut-in or the restart to form a hydrate slush with the excess water in the wellbore.
Depending on the volume of gas, slushy hydrates and deposits in the wellbore upon
restart, it may or may not be enough to stop flow and prevent the water from
pushing this hydrate to below the SCSSV, where they will melt.
Even excluding this scenario of gas leaking past the SCSSV, gas and oil migration
will pose a risk at start-up as the valve is opened with oil or gas trapped beneath it
unless downward flow is established in a timely fashion. It should be emphasised
that any hydrate deposits that form in the tree or just beneath the tree in either case
will likely not be quickly melted even if flow is established since the incoming water
temperature is expected to be no higher than about 60F and at pressures still within
the hydrate region. Because of the uncertain nature of gas migration in the water
injection system and the inability to inject any chemicals into the wellbore to prevent
or remediate hydrates, then the risk is considered high for the water injection trees
and upper wellbore. Since this is a problem that occurs during shut-in and can
prevent start-up, this risk is included in both the start-up and shutdown categories
for the sake of completeness.

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Medium Risk
None.
Low Risk
Flowlines and risers have a low risk of hydrate formation during start-up since they
will always be started up with hot-oiling (or will be started up before their cooldown
time has expired). Hot-oiling ensures that the flowlines are always above the
Hydrate Dissociation Temperature (HDT) and have a guaranteed 12-hour cooldown
to HDT.
Water injection flowlines and water injection tees have low risk of hydrate formation
due to the low probability of any gas migration to these parts. Any oil or gas that
migrates into the well is likely to accumulate at the tree.
As per current Bonga procedures, the gas lift riser will be flushed with methanol
(to displace potential hydrocarbons that might have backed into the gas lift valve
sleds and portions downstream of it towards the flowline) during shutdown.
Moreover, the gas injection side is higher in pressure so as to prevent backflow of
hydrocarbons into the gas lift system (achieved by means of an orifice plate which
ensures higher upstream pressure).

3.2

Steady-state
High Risk
None.
Medium Risk
None.
Low Risk
All sections of the Bonga subsea system are under low risk of hydrate formation due
to the design of the Bonga system. By design, every part of the subsea production
system is insulated to operate above hydrate dissociation temperatures and also to
provide 8 to 12 hours of cooldown outside of the hydrate region in case of a shut-in
(8 hours for wellbore and 12 hours for the rest of the system). Similarly, we do not
expect any kind of backflow of hydrocarbons into umbilicals, water injection system
or the gas lift system during steady-state.

3.3

Shutdown
Shutdown risks are tricky to capture since any problem that occurs during shutdown
will be manifested only when we try to restart the system. However, this paragraph
attempts to capture possible hydrate problems that are solely the result of a shut-in
and not necessarily problems that occur during start-up.
High Risk
The highest risks at shutdown are hydrate formation within chemical umbilical lines,
gas lift umbilical lines and water injection trees due to backflow of hydrocarbons.

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In Bonga, the control system is designed such that the chemical valves at the trees
are instructed to close as soon as the wells shut in. Similarly, the gas lift valves on
the gas lift sled are also designed to be shut in as soon as the FPSO flowline
boarding valves shut in. However, there has been past experience wherein hydrate
formation has occurred due to backflow. An example of this is the Malampaya
Project wherein methanol lines were plugged with hydrates due to backflow from the
production system into the umbilical.
Gas migration from the water injection reservoirs can also result in hydrate formation
in the water injection trees. Gas migration can occur either during shut-in after a
short period of operation (say within the first few days of start-up when the
hydrocarbon front has not been pushed far enough into the reservoir) or during a
long extended shut in (when gas eventually migrates back, as in the case of the
Terra Nova Field in Canada)8.
The gas from the reservoir can migrate past the SCSSV towards the trees and can
result in plug formation.
Medium Risk
None.
Low Risk
All other parts of the subsea system have a low risk with respect to hydrate
formation due to the fact that the Bonga production system is designed with a
minimum 12-hour cooldown time after shut-in. Failure to protect the subsea sections
against hydrate formation greatly increases the risk of forming a hydrate plug
upon restart.

3.4

Aborted Start-up
High Risk
The aborted start-up has the highest risk of hydrate formation of any of the
operations at Bonga. The wellbore, well jumper, production manifolds, gas lift sled,
umbilicals and water injection trees are all particularly susceptible to hydrates during
an aborted start-up.
The risk is similar to that of the start-up case (ie wellbore, well-jumper, production
manifold, chemical umbilicals and water injection tree are all at high risk).
In addition, the gas lift umbilical also becomes a high-risk candidate with respect to
hydrate formation. This is due to the fact that the water-heated portion of the Gas
Lift Riser (GLR) system below the GLR valves takes some time to reheat once the
system has cooled thus leaving the system vulnerable to hydrates.
The water injection trees are at a high risk because any gas that may have migrated
near the wellbore and/or accumulated beneath the SCSSV during the shut-in would
not be moved very far during the initial start-up. This means that less time is
required for the gas to migrate back to the wellbore or past the safety valve. Cold
fluids have been moved further down into the wellbore where the pressure is higher
and there is a greater likelihood of seeing the gas as it bubbles up the wellbore.

8
At Terra Nova, this problem with gas migration only appeared during the first 6 weeks of water injection. However,
Terra Nova has a different water injection strategy (involving alternating periods of injection followed by extended
shut-in) and the properties of the reservoir are different than at Bonga.

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Medium Risk
The flowlines are designed in such a way that they have a minimum of 12 hours
cooldown after a shut-in from steady state. However, if a well has a warm start into a
flowline during the cooldown period and this well has an aborted start-up, it is not
very easy to estimate the resulting cooldown time. This uncertainty in the cooldown
time necessitates identifying hydrate formation as a medium risk.
The second scenario is starting up a cold well into a flowline, which has just been
hot-oiled. The hot-oiling ensures that the flowline has a 12-hour cooldown prior to
starting up the well and also that the cold fluids from the well do not reduce the
flowline temperature to below the HDT. However, an aborted start-up on this well
will result in not knowing the exact temperature of the flowline and thus result in an
uncertain cooldown time (and hence a hydrate risk).
Low Risk
The risk in the water injection flowlines/tees is low due to the low probability of gas
migration from the reservoir through the SCSSV and then past the tree.

4.0

HYDRATE PLUG DETECTION AND REMEDIATION


As seen in Figure 3.8, every portion of the subsea system (except for waterflood
flowlines and tees) is at risk with respect to hydrate formation either during start-up,
shutdown or during an aborted start-up. Based on our current knowledge of
hydrates with respect to Bonga, it is unlikely that hydrate formation will be detected
in the system before a hydrate plug is formed. Therefore, this paragraph assumes
that a hydrate plug has formed and provides guidance for determining approximately
where the plug is in the subsea system and for remediating hydrate plugs.
Lastly, there are examples for hydrate detection and remediation drawn from
different fields from various parts of the world (Shell and non-Shell).
In this document the pressure measurement is the crucial parameter in determining
the location of the hydrate plug. However, it should be noted that the temperature
measurement is important in determining if the system is in the hydrate formation
region. The temperature and pressure must be in the hydrate region before hydrates
can form. Figure 3.1 or the Bonga tool can be used to determine if the system
temperature and pressure are in the hydrate region. If the system is operating
outside of the hydrate region and a blockage is formed, then the cause is something
other than hydrates.
The location of hydrate plug can only be determined with limited accuracy. In the
case of Bonga (and the guidelines in this document), the hydrate plug position can
be determined to be between a particular pair of pressure sensors. Although not
discussed in this document, there are other methods to determine a more exact plug
location (eg ultrasonic sensors). The pressure sensors at Bonga can localise
the plug to specific sections of the subsea system, including the flowline, riser,
jumper/manifold or the wellbore. For the hydrate remediation guidelines presented in
this document, this gross determination of plug location is sufficient. If the plug
location needs to be determined more exactly, expert guidance is suggested.
Information is also presented for hydrate plugs that form in umbilical lines and the
waterflood lines. These lines are not equipped with instruments that help to locate
and remediate a hydrate plug, as are the other portions of the subsea system.
In these cases, more general information will be given.

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4.1

Unrestricted

Flowlines/Risers
Although the risk for hydrate formation in the flowline has been determined to be
low, it is important to have guidelines in place to remediate a hydrate plug in the
flowline. The loss of a flowline can affect production from multiple wells (all wells
from that manifold), which has a significant impact on deferred production
and revenue.

4.1.1

Hydrate Plug Formation


Flowlines (Except PFL 03/04)
The most likely time that a hydrate plug will occur (or be detected) in the
flowline/riser section is during a restart following an aborted start-up. Plugs may
occur during the shutdown period, but they will not be detected until the flowline is
restarted. A hydrate plug during steady-state operation is considered unlikely since
the flowing temperatures are outside of the hydrate region. However, the indications
of having formed a hydrate plug will be the same for a restart and steady-state flow.
Figure 3.9 gives a simplified schematic of the flowline with the hydrate plug along
with the affected subsea components. For simplicity, this figure can be used for any
flowline pair (except PFL 03/04). In all cases, Flowline 1 (not necessarily PFL 01)
refers to the flowline with a hydrate plug and Flowline 2 (not necessarily PFL 02)
refers to the second flowline in the pair that does not have a hydrate plug.
During production, the Pigging Isolation Valve (PIV) is closed and a hydrate plug in
Flowline 1 results in a pressure increase at the manifold (and at the tree of the wells
flowing into Flowline 1) to the Shut-in Tubing Pressure (SITP). The pressure at the
downstream end of the plug (measured at the riser base and topsides of Riser 1)
decreases. The plug in Flowline 1 does not affect Flowline 2, since the flowlines are
isolated when the PIV is closed.
The lack of flow in the flowline also results in a decrease in flowline temperatures,
however, due to the flowline insulation, this temperature decrease may be too
slow to recognise over the short time-scale that the plug is expected to form.
Thus pressure measurements will be the primary means of detecting a hydrate plug.
Plug Formation in Flowlines (except PFL 03/04)
Refer to schematic in Figure 3.9 for relevant locations of pressure gauges.
Use Appendix 3A to determine the pressure tags for the relevant pressure sensors.

Increase in pressure at manifold (Flowline 1 side


(wells flowing to Flowline 1) to SITP

[Pm-1])

and at the tree

Manifold pressure and tree pressure upstream and downstream of the


choke read the same on the affected wells

Decrease in pressure at the base of Riser 1 (Prb-1) and topsides of Riser 1

Decrease in Riser 1 temperature topsides

Due to flowline insulation, the temperature decrease may not readily


observed

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Flowline PFL 03/04


The case of a hydrate plug in either PFL 03 or 04 is similar to the general case of
hydrate plug in one of the flowlines except that the pressure downstream of the plug
is determined at manifold PM3 instead of at the riser base (or topsides). There is
an additional difficulty in this case since the downstream pressure will still see
contributions from other wells flowing into PM3, but there should be a significant
decrease in pressure (and temperature). However, the upstream pressure
(PM4 manifold pressure in Flowline 1 and in all wells flowing to Flowline 1 at PM4)
will increase to the SITP pressure.
Plug Formation Between PM3 and PM4 (PFL 03/04)
Refer to the schematic in Figure 3.10 for relevant locations of pressure gauges:

Increase in pressure drop in Flowline 1 between PM3 and PM4

Pressure increase at PM4 (Flowline 1 side), pressure decrease at PM3


(Flowline 1 side)

Pressures at the tree of the wells flowing to Flowline 1 (through PM4) increase
to SITP

Riser 2

Subsea
Manifold

Pm-2

Topsides
Pressure

Flowline 2
Prb-2
Riser Base
Pressure

PIV
Pm-1

Hydrate Plug

Riser 1

Prb-1

Flowline 1
Manifold
Pressure
OPRM20030302D_058.ai

Figure 3.9 Schematic of Hydrate Plug in Flowline (Except PFL 03/04)

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Manifold
(PM4)

Manifold
(PM3)

Flowline 2

Flowlines
to FPSO
PFL 05/06

Manifold
(PM3)
Pressure

PIV
Pm-1

Hydrate Plug
Flowline 1

Manifold
(PM4)
Pressure
OPRM20030302D_059.ai

Figure 3.10 Schematic of Hydrate Plug in Flowline (PFL 03/04)


Riser
A hydrate plug that forms in the riser (Riser 1) will show the same indications as in
the flowline except for the pressure reading at the base of Riser 1. In this case, both
the manifold pressure (Flowline 1 side [Pm-1]) and the riser base pressure (Riser 1 [Prb-1])
increase to the SITP. There will still be a decrease in pressure at the downstream
end of the plug (measured at Riser 1 topsides). The hydrate plug in Riser 1 will not
affect Flowline 2, since the PIV is closed.
Plug Formation in Riser
Please refer to the schematic in Figure 3.11 for relevant locations of pressure
gauges:

Same indication as in the flowline

Pressure also increases at the base of the Riser 1 to SITP

Riser 2
Topsides
Pressure

Subsea
Manifold

Pm-2

Flowline 2
Prb-2
Riser Base
Pressure

PIV

Hydrate Plug

Prb-1

Pm-1

Riser 1

Flowline 1
Manifold
Pressure
OPRM20030302D_060.ai

Fig 3.11 Schematic of Hydrate Plug in Riser

Figure 3.11 Schematic of Hydrate Plug in Riser

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Hydrate Plug Remediation


This document is only meant to help provide guidelines for relatively simple cases.
Cases involving hydrate plugs in both flowlines are much more complex in terms of
safely performing a remediation and hence are not discussed in this document.
In these cases additional support is recommended before any plug remediation
procedures are attempted.
Flowlines (Except PFL 03/04)
The following discussion is based on Figure 3.9 and the convention that the hydrate
blockage is in Flowline 1 (not necessarily PFL 01), and that Flowline 2 (not
necessarily PFL 02) does not have a hydrate blockage. Refer to Figure 3.12 for a
flowchart representation of the procedures presented in this section.
Since the precise location of the blockage in Flowline 1 is not known,
depressurisation of the flowline from both ends is the safest option. Four pressures
are monitored during this process:

Prb-1, the

pressure at the riser base of Flowline 1

Pm-1, the

pressure at the manifold of Flowline 1

Pm-2, the

pressure at the manifold of Flowline 2

Prb-2, the

pressure at the riser base of Flowline 2

Step 1 Shut In Flowline 1


Once it has been determined that Flowline 1 has a blockage, the following steps
should be followed as soon as possible:

Shut in Flowline 1 by closing the topsides Flowline 1 shut-off valve

Shut in the wells feeding Flowline 19

Secure all wells flowing to Flowline 1

Displace wellbore and jumper with methanol

Step 2 Set-up for Blowdown


Configure topsides piping to allow blow down of Flowline 2 to the flare, and to allow
blow down of platform end of Flowline 1 through the Low Pressure (LP) separator.
Step 3 Shut In Flowline 2 Wells
Shut in Flowline 2 and the wells feeding Flowline 2 such that the pressure Pm-2 at the
subsea manifold is within 14bar (200psi) of Pm-1, but the smaller the pressure drop
the better. The pressure gradient across the manifold should be small in the event
that the plug is near the manifold. A straightforward way to set a safe pressure at
Pm-2 is as follows:
(1)

Shut in Flowline 2 by closing a topsides valve.

(2)

Allow the pressure at the manifold,


the wells feeding Flowline 2.

Pm-2,

to rise to close to

Pm-1,

and then shut in

9
After the wells feeding flowline 1 have been shut in, the pressure at the manifold, Pm-1, is expected to be 500psi to
3000psi greater than the pressure at the riser base, Prb-1. The difference between these two pressures (Pm-1 Prb-1) is
the pressure across the blockage, Pab. Pab times the pipeline internal diameter is the driving force on the blockage.

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Unrestricted

Blow down Flowline 2 topsides to the flare until the target safe pressure at
is reached.

Pm-2

Target safe pressure at Pm-2 is within 14bar (200psi) of Pm-1.


(4)

Close the topsides Flowline 2 valve.

Step 4 Reduce Pressure in Flowlines


Open PIV to equalise pressures between the two flowlines. Blow down Flowline 2
until Prb-2 reaches a pressure of 7bar to 14bar (100psi to 200psi) below Prb-1.
When this occurs, begin simultaneous blowdown of both flowlines, making sure that
Prb-2 remains 7bar to 14bar (100psi to 200psi) below Pm-1. Near the end of the
pressure lowering, gas lift may be required to further lower the pressure.
Step 5 Reduce Pressure Outside of Hydrate Region
Blow down the flowlines to pressures outside of the hydrate region so that the
blockage will melt (dissociate). The lower the pressure, the faster the blockage
will melt10.
Blow down Flowline 1 and Flowline 2 to as low pressures as possible while
maintaining Prb-1 7bar to 14bar above Pm-1.
The pressure at the blockage must be less than the hydrate equilibrium pressure at
ambient seafloor temperature11 in order for hydrates to melt (dissociate).
If the pressure cannot be lowered enough to melt the hydrates in a reasonable
amount of time (refer to Figures 3.6 and 3.7), then alternative means of hydrate
remediation are necessary and will be recommended by the blockage response
team.
Step 6 Hydrate Removal
As soon as pressure communication is observed across the plug, methanol should
be injected into the flowline (via one or more of the wells feeding that flowline).
This will help ensure that residual hydrate in the flowline does not form another plug
during displacement and will aid in melting the remaining hydrate. A total volume of
about 50 barrels of methanol should be injected into the flowline prior to start-up.
Step 7 Dead-oiling
Circulate dead-oil from Flowline 2 into Flowline 1. This moves residual hydrates
closer to topsides, where blockages are easier to remediate if they form. Hot-oiling
is preferred to dead-oiling, if it is available.
Flowline PFL 03/04
This situation is similar to the general flowline plug case, except that there is an
additional manifold (PM3) that needs to be taken into account. The flowlines should
be configured as illustrated in Figure 3.10, in that Flowline 1 flows into either PFL 05
or 06 and Flowline 2 flows only into the other flowline (PFL 06 or 05). The Crossover
Valve (XOV) at manifold PM3 is to remain closed during the remediation process.
This will create a single large dual-flow loop that can be remediated using the
procedures given for the other flowlines.

10

For instance, if the pressure is reduced to 7bar (100psi), it will take a hydrate plug (with the 702 fluid) about a day
to melt; and if the pressure is only decreased to 14bar (200psi), it will take a hydrate plug about a month to melt.
11

15bar (215psi) for 702 or 9bar (130psi) for 710 Refer to Table 3.2 Figure 3.1.

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The case studies given in Appendix 3B Paragraph 2.0 give several examples where
plugs have been safely remediated by depressurising the flowline at both ends.
These examples are meant to illustrate the wide range of conditions that lead to
hydrate formation and the various locations (within the flowline) where a plug can
form. In all cases, the pressure in the flowline was safely reduced below the HDP
and the plug melted. Particular note should be paid to the very well-documented
case study of the ARCO hydrate plug. This plug formed in an insulated line and took
23 days to remediate once the pressure was reduced, and further reinforces that the
removal of a hydrate plug is not a fast process and may take many days.
Riser
Remediation of a hydrate plug in the riser (Riser 1) can be handled in the same way
as in the case of a hydrate plug in one of the flowlines. However, extra caution
needs to be taken to ensure that the pressure at the base of Riser 1 is less than the
pressure topsides at Riser 1.
In this case, it may also be recommended to maintain a high pressure downstream
(between hydrate plug and topsides) of the plug and to do a one-sided
depressurisation by aggressively blowing down Flowline 2. This will ensure that any
plug movement is away from the FPSO. Figure 3.13 presents a flowchart for plug
removal in the riser.
Note: Figure 3.13 states a pressure drop limitation across the plug of 28bar
(400psi). This pressure drop may be exceeded if one-sided depressurisation
is used.

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Close in all wells flowing


to affected manifold
Treat jumper and wellbore by
displacing with methanol

If hydrate plug is in PFL 03/04, then:


(1) Close in all wells flowing to PM 3.
(2) Make sure the PIV at PM 3 is
closed.
(3) Use WSV to route flow from
Flowline 1 to either PFL 05 or 06.
(4) Route flow from Flowline 2 to
another flowline (PFL 06 or 05).

Open PIV to equalise pressure


in Flowlines 1 and 2

Begin blowdown of Flowline 2


(flowline without hydrate plug)
to flare. Blow down Flowline 1
(flowline without hydrate plug)
to LP separator

Make sure pressure gradient


across plug does not exceed
14bar (200psig), measured as the
difference between the manifold
pressure (Pm-1) and the pressure
at the base of the riser 1 (Prb-1)

Is the
manifold pressure
below HDP?

Use riser gas lift to further reduce


the pressure in the flowline

Yes

Maintain pressure drop of 7 to 14bar


(100 to 200psig) across the plug

No

Monitor pressure at the base


of riser 1 (Prb-1) for signs of
pressure communication
(eg sudden pressure decrease)

Is there
pressure communication
across plug?

Yes

No

If possible, use gas lift to


further reduce the pressure
(whilst still maintaining an
acceptable pressure drop
across the plug)

Inject 50 barrels of methanol into


the flowline through the manifold
(via MIV 2). Start dead-oiling
(or hot-oiling if available) the flowline
from Flowline 2 to Flowline 1
OPRM20030302D_052.ai

Figure 3.12 Remediation Procedure for Hydrate Plug in Flowline

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Close in all wells flowing


to affected manifold
Treat jumper and wellbore by
displacing with methanol
Open PIV to equalise pressure
in Flowlines 1 and 2

Begin blowdown of Flowline 2


(flowline without hydrate plug)
to flare. Blow down Flowline 1
(flowline without hydrate plug)
to LP separator

Ensure pressure gradient


across plug does not exceed
28bar (400psig), measured as the
difference between topside of
riser 1 and the base of riser 1

Use riser gas lift to further reduce


the pressure. Note that this only
applies to riser 2

Is the
pressure at the base
of riser 1 (Prb-1) below
HDP?

Yes

Maintain pressure drop of 7 to 14bar


(100 to 200psig) across the plug

No

Monitor pressure for signs of


pressure communication across
plug, either to decrease topsides
(riser 1) or a sudden pressure
increase (spike) at the base of
riser 1 (Prb-1)
Is there
pressure communication
across plug?

Yes

No

Inject 50 barrels of methanol into


the flowline (via the gas lift riser).
Start dead-oiling the flowline
from Flowline 2 to Flowline 1
OPRM20030302D_053.ai

Figure 3.13 Remediation Procedure for Hydrate Plug in Riser

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4.2

Wellbore Jumper and Manifold

4.2.1

Hydrate Plug Formation


A hydrate plug in the jumper or manifold prevents flow from a particular well into the
flowline. When a plug is formed in the jumper (refer to Figure 3.14) or manifold,
the pressure at the tree increases to the SITP even though the choke is open.
The pressures upstream (production pressure) and downstream (outlet pressure)
of the choke are the same. The downhole pressure increases to the Shut-in
Bottomhole Pressure (SBHP) and the pressure at the manifold begins to drop off.
Temperature also begins to decrease at the tree, but this decrease may not be
noticeable (since it will occur slowly).
Note: The temperature must be in the hydrate formation region in order to form
hydrates.
When there is more than one well flowing to a single flowline, the same indications
of hydrate formation are present, including the decrease in pressure at the manifold.
The manifold pressure continues to see contributions from the other wells so the
pressure does not decrease as low as it would with only one well flowing to the
manifold, but the change in pressure is significant enough to be detected.
Plug Formation in Jumper/Manifold

Pressure at tree (production and outlet pressure) increases to SITP

Pressure upstream (production pressure) and downstream (outlet pressure)


of the choke equalise

Downhole pressure increases to the SBHP

Reduction in manifold pressure and temperature

The magnitude of these decreases depends on the number of wells flowing


into the flowline
MIV 1

Methanol Line

XOV

MIV 2

ASV

PSV

Production
Pressure
Choke

AWV

Annulus

PWV
PWV

SWV

Manifold

Outlet
Pressure

PIV
Hydrate Plug

WSV

WSV

SCSSV

Manifold
Pressure

Downhole
Pressure

Flowlines
to FPSO

OPRM20030302D_066.ai

Figure 3.14 Schematic of Hydrate Plate in Jumper

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Hydrate Plug Remediation


If a plug is formed in the jumper, two-sided depressurisation is not possible.
One-sided depressurisation may be used to melt the plug, but due to safety
considerations, it should not be attempted unless the methanol remediation
strategy fails.
In order for methanol to melt the plug, the methanol must contact the hydrate.
Due to the shape of the jumper section, it may not be possible to get methanol to
the hydrate surface. In order to have a reasonable chance of getting methanol to the
hydrate surface, the methanol should be rocked into the jumper. This strategy has
proved successful in the wellbore (refer to the Popeye case study), but has not been
tried in a jumper.
The flowchart shown in Figure 3.15 gives the steps to follow in order to use this
methanol rocking procedure. The first step is to isolate the affected jumper from the
manifold by closing the WSV. Production from the wells flowing to the affected
manifold does not need to be stopped. If the methanol strategy does not work,
then the production from the other wells will need to be stopped.
Methanol should first be bullheaded into the wellbore to protect that area against
hydrates. Once the well is protected, all valves should then be closed except for the
SCSSV, Production Master Valve (PMV) and Sacrificial Wing Valve (SWV) and the
choke. Use MIV2 to inject methanol into the jumper. Once the pressure (production
and outlet) reaches a level that is 21bar (300psig) higher than the SITP, close MIV2.
Before initiating rocking, ensure that the SWV is open.
A rock has three steps:
(1)

Close the Production Wing Valve (PWV). Conduct a blockage-breach test


every four rocks or if a blockage breach has been indicated in Step 3 (refer to
the discussion below).

(2)

Inject methanol through MIV2. This should increase the outlet pressure.
Stop injecting methanol (close MIV2) when the outlet pressure is greater than
the SITP by 300psi.

(3)

For 60 to 90 minutes, monitor for blockage breach. Blockage breach may be


indicated in several ways (refer to the discussion below). If the blockage is not
breached, then open PWV (and drop the outlet pressure to the downhole
pressure).

Rocking the methanol into the jumper is achieved by repeating these three steps
many times. After every four rocks, a blockage-breach test (discussed below)
should be conducted.
The success of this method depends on the proximity of the hydrate plug to the tree.
Since the pressure increase in the line will be small in relation to the SITP,
the volume of methanol that is injected during each pressure cycle will be small.
Only for cases when the plug is reasonably close to the tree will this method work.

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Blockage breach may be indicated by a rapid pressure reduction during methanol


injection or during the monitoring period; by a slow but significant pressure reduction
during the monitoring period; or by a significant increase in the amount of methanol
that is injected during Step 2 (over the amount injected in earlier rocks to the
same pressure). After every four rocks or after indication of a blockage
breach, a blockage-breach test should be conducted in Step 1 of a rock. The
blockage-breach test is:
(1)

After completion of Step 3 of a rock and closing of PWV, open WSV and
observe the well outlet and manifold pressures for 15 minutes.

(2)

If the well outlet pressure remains constant and above the manifold pressure,
then the blockage has not been breached end of test.

(3)

If the well outlet pressure drops significantly and drops to the manifold
pressure then blockage breach is indicated. Proceed to blockage-breach
confirmation (Step 5).

(4)

If the well outlet pressure is about equal to the manifold pressure prior to
opening WSV in Step 1, then it may not be clear whether the system behaves
as described in Step 2 or Step 3. If this is the case, or it is not clear as to
whether or not the blockage is breached for whatever reason, then MIV2 should
be opened very briefly. If opening MIV2 does not raise the outlet pressure,
or the outlet pressure rises and then decays back down (within 15 minutes)
too near the manifold pressure, then blockage breaching is indicated
proceed to Step 5. Otherwise, this is the end of the test.

(5)

Confirm blockage breach by opening MIV2 (allowing methanol to flow into the
jumper) and confirming that the outlet pressure does not increase. Continue
until one jumper volume of methanol has been injected and until there is no
evidence of flow restriction in the jumper once these conditions are met,
the blockage has been cleared sufficiently to restart the well.

Once the blockage has been cleared, open the WSV and push any remaining
hydrate debris into the manifold with (additional methanol and) well production.
If production from the other wells was never stopped, the manifold should be warm
and help to quickly melt the remaining hydrate.
The total time to remove a plug in this manner should be on the order of 1 day
(24 hours). If the plug has not released within 3 days, then it is time to use an
alternative remediation method. The alternative methods include:

One-sided pressure reduction

Replacement of the jumper section

During execution of the methanol rocking method, alternative remediation methods


should be evaluated to determine the most feasible method for the current blockage.
Both alternative methods listed require that production from the other wells to be
stopped, so preparations should be made to shut in the other wells.

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Treat wellbore by displacing with


methanol (should be done prior
to the cooldown time)

Close the following valves on the


affected tree: PWV, MIV1, MIV2,
AWV, XOV, ASV, PSV
Close WSV to isolate well
from mainfold
Open: PMV, SCSSV,
SWV, choke

Open MIV2 and inject methanol


injo jumper to 21bar (300psig)
above the SITP

Close MIV2

Monitor pressure at tree


(outlet pressure) for any change
for 60 to 90 minutes

Conduct a blockage-breach
test every fourth cycle by
opening the WSV

Did
pressure decrease
at tree?

Close PWV

Yes

Inject 20bbls of methanol into


wellbore and jumper, then proceed
to start-up procedures

No

Open PWV and relieve pressure


in the jumper into wellbore
OPRM20030302D_054.ai

Figure 3.15 Remediation Procedure for Hydrate Plug in Jumper/Manifold

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4.3

Wellbore/Tree (Upstream of Inhibitor Injection Point)

4.3.1

Hydrate Plug Formation


The formation of a plug in the wellbore is similar to the case of a plug formed in the
jumper section. When a wellbore hydrate plug forms, the downhole pressure gauge
increases to the SBHP, and the production and outlet pressures approach the
manifold pressure regardless of the open choke setting.
Plug Formation in Wellbore/Tree

Downhole gauge increases to SBHP

Pressure at tree is the same as the manifold pressure (in spite of choke being
not fully open)

No change in production pressure as the choke opening is changed


MIV 1

Methanol Line

MIV 2

XOV

ASV

PSV

Production
Pressure
Choke

AWV

Annulus

PWV

SWV
Outlet
Pressure

PWV

Jumper to
Subsea Manifold
Hydrate Plug

SCSSV
Downhole
Pressure

OPRM20030302D_067.ai

Figure 3.16 Schematic of Hydrate Plug in Wellbore

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Hydrate Plug Remediation


If a plug is formed in the wellbore, two-sided depressurisation is not possible.
Generally, one-sided pressure reduction is not recommended for wellbore blockages
due to the difficulty of safe execution in the wellbore environment. Rocking
methanol into the well is recommended as the first means of removing the hydrate
blockage. The flowchart in Figure 3.15 shows the rocking procedure steps.
Once the plug is detected, close the WSV to isolate the affected well from the
manifold. Production from the other wells does not need to be stopped immediately,
but preparations should be made in case the hydrate plug cannot be easily
removed. Open the SCSSV, PMV and the choke, and close all other valves (refer to
Figure 3.16 for relevant valves). Use MIV2 to inject methanol into the well by
opening PWV. Increase the production pressure until the maximum pressure is
achieved (~345bar (5000psi) the rating of the tree) and then close MIV2 and monitor
for blockage breach for approximately 60 to 90 minutes. Then slowly open the SWV
to relieve the wellbore pressure into the jumper. Allow the production pressure to
decrease to 21bar (300psig) less than the last known SITP, then close SWV.
Repeat this cycle until the plug is melted and pressure communication is established
between the downhole pressure and the production pressure.
Initially, the top of the wellbore may be filled with gas. The methanol can be used to
remove the gas and fill the top section of the wellbore with liquid. This will prevent
the plug from breaking free and having enough momentum to cause any damage at
the tree. Therefore, during the first few pressure cycles, the pressure should only be
decreased to 7bar (100psig) less than the last known SITP. When the wellbore is
liquid filled, the pressure should begin to increase very quickly with the addition of
only a small amount of methanol.
Pressure communication can be detected by a sudden change in the production
pressure, which may be either a sudden increase or decrease depending on when
in the pressure cycle communication is established. The downhole pressure sensor
should also fluctuate, but this may be less noticeable than the production pressure.
The volume of methanol that can be injected into the wellbore will also increase
once the hydrate blockage is breached.
Once the blockage is breached and pressure communication is established between
the downhole pressure sensor and production pressure sensor, close the SWV
(the PWV should still be open) and inject ~50 barrels of methanol into well.
As methanol is injected, there should be some indication (pressure increase) noted
on the downhole pressure sensor. If this is all successful, production can be restarted.
This methanol rocking has been successfully applied in the past (refer to the
Popeye case study). At Popeye, the plug took roughly a day to remove once the
methanol rocking procedure commenced. In other cases, such as at Auger, a
coiled tubing unit had to be brought in to melt a hydrate blockage which was much
larger than the one experienced at Popeye.

Section 3 Hydrate Remediation Guidelines

OPRM-2003-0302D

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Unrestricted

Select affected well and


close the WSV to isolate well
from manifold

All valves should be closed,


except the SCSSV, PMV
and the choke

Open PWV and use MIV2 to


inject methanol into the well

Inject methanol into the well


until maximum flowline
pressure is achieved

Close MIV2

Close SWV

Monitor wellbore pressure and


watch for pressure communication
for 60 to 90 minutes

Pressure
communication?

Yes

Inject 50bbls of methanol into


wellbore and proceed to well
start-up procedures

No

Open SWV to relieve wellbore


pressure into jumper, pressure
should be decreased to 21bar
(300psig) below last known SITP.
(During the first few cycles,
the pressure should only be
decreased to 7bar (100psig)
below the last know SITP)

OPRM20030302D_055.ai

Figure 3.17 Remediation Procedure for a Hydrate Plug in the Wellbore

Section 3 Hydrate Remediation Guidelines

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 35 of 64

30-April-2006

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

4.4

Umbilicals

4.4.1

Hydrate Plug Formation

Unrestricted

The risk of hydrate formation in the umbilical lines is highest during times when
there are large pressure fluctuations in the flowline. Many control system interlocks
are put in place to prevent pressure fluctuation-induced hydrate formation in the
umbilical lines. Examples of this include: Chemical Injection Valves (CIVs) have to
be closed before reducing the choke and shutting in a well; CIVs automatically close
when a well gets shut in etc). It should be noted that hydrate plugs in the umbilical
might occur during steady-state operation due to pressure fluctuations created by
slugging. These pressure fluctuations have the potential to push production fluids
into the umbilical. Once production fluids are in the umbilical, it is relatively easy to
form a hydrate plug due to the small diameter of the umbilical lines. Based on GoM
experience, the formation of hydrate plugs in umbilical lines is fairly common. It
should be noted that most of the cases of hydrate plug in the umbilical line are due
to manual operation during transients (ie the correct operating logic was not followed
and valves were opened/closed in the wrong order).
A plug in one of the umbilical lines will be detected as an increase in the injection
pressure of the affected chemical line and loss of flow of that particular chemical.
The example in Figure 3.18 shows a hydrate plug formed in the methanol line,
but there is the potential to form a hydrate plug in any of the umbilical lines.
The detection and remediation process is the same for a plug formed in any of the
umbilical lines.
Hydrate Plug

MIV 1

Methanol Line

MIV 2

Production
Pressure
Choke

Annulus

PWV

SWV
Outlet
Pressure

PWV

Jumper to
Subsea Manifold

SCSSV
Downhole
Pressure

OPRM20030302D_068.ai

Figure 3.18 Schematic of Hydrate Plug in Umbilical Line

Section 3 Hydrate Remediation Guidelines

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 36 of 64

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4.4.2

Unrestricted

Hydrate Plug Remediation


Since hydrate plugs formed in umbilicals are typically much smaller hydrate plugs,
it may be possible to push them out by increasing the pressure on the upstream end
of the plug. Similar to the procedure of methanol rocking to remove a hydrate plug in
the jumper or wellbore, the chemical in the umbilical can be used to cycle the
pressure up and down in an effort to remove the plug.
Note: This strategy attempts to mechanically remove the hydrate plug and not to
physically melt it as in all the other remediation strategies.
The flowchart in Figure 3.19 shows the blockage clearing procedure steps.
The pressure in the umbilical should be increased to 70bar (~1000psig) above the
normal hydrostatic pressure in the umbilical. Then the pressure can be released
from the chemical line but still kept above the flowline pressure. Since the chemical
in the line is not likely to actually melt the hydrate, the time between cycles can be
short (about 15 to 30 minutes). This process may be repeated several times.
The likelihood of success using this method is small, but is much easier than other
remediation options.
If this strategy does not work, then the system must be depressurised. This will
involve stopping production from all wells flowing to the affected manifold and
blowing down the entire flowline. The first step is to assess how critical this
particular chemical is to maintain the current production. If clearing the blockage can
wait until the next planned shut-in, then that would be recommended. Once this is
done, the plug in the umbilical can be melted using one-sided depressurisation.
In this case there is much less of a safety concern associated with one-sided
depressurisation due to the small size of the hydrate plug.

Relieve pressure in umbilical


to hydrostatic pressure

Increase pressure in umbilical


to maximum pressure and
leave for 15 to 30 minutes

Did this clear


blockage?

Yes

Inject chemical through the


affected chemical line to
fully clear blockage

No

If chemical line is critical to


operating system, begin
preparations to shut in and
blow down flowlines

OPRM20030302D_056.ai

Figure 3.19 Remediation Procedure for a Hydrate Plug in an Umbilical

Section 3 Hydrate Remediation Guidelines

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 37 of 64

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4.5

Gas Lift Riser

4.5.1

Hydrate Plug Formation

Unrestricted

The risk of forming a hydrate plug in the gas lift riser is highest during a shutdown
and an aborted start-up. A plug in this section is detected by lack of gas flow in the
riser and an increase in the gas lift riser topside pressure. Determining which
pressure sensors are in communication with one another can help to localise
the hydrate plug. Upstream of the plug all pressures should read the same,
and downstream of the plug all pressures should read the same as the riser base
pressure sensor in the flowline. The hydrate plug is located between the two
adjacent pressure sensors not in pressure communication. If the gas lift riser
pressure and the gas lift riser topside pressure are equal, then the plug is between
the gas lift riser pressure sensor and the flowline (refer to Figure 3.20). If the riser
base pressure and the gas lift riser pressure are equal, then the plug is between the
gas lift riser and the gas lift riser pressure sensor (refer to Figure 3.21).
Note: These figures refer to the plug being either upstream or downstream of the
methanol injection point.
There is a small risk that the plug is between the methanol injection point and
the pressure sensor, but due to the small volume between these sections, this is
highly unlikely.
Plug Formation in Gas Lift Riser

Increase in gas lift riser topside pressure

No flow in gas lift riser

Unlike other portions of the Bonga system, a plug in this riser is much easier to
remediate should it form12.
Methanol Line

Gas Lift Riser

GLR Topside
Pressure

To Production
Riser

GLIV1
Gas Lift Riser
Pressure
GLIV2

Hydrate Plug

To Subsea
Manifold

Flowline
Riser Base
Pressure

OPRM20030302D_069.ai

Figure 3.20 Schematic of Hydrate Plug in Riser Gas Lift System


(Between Methanol Line and Flowline)
12

Email from Sada Iyer, March 2003.

Section 3 Hydrate Remediation Guidelines

OPRM-2003-0302D

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Unrestricted

Methanol Line

Gas Lift Riser

GLR Topside
Pressure

GLIV1
Hydrate Plug

To Production
Riser

Gas Lift Riser


Pressure

GLIV2

To Subsea
Manifold

Flowline
Riser Base
Pressure

OPRM20030302D_070.ai

Figure 3.21 Schematic of Hydrate Plug in Riser Gas Lift System


(Between Methanol Line and GLR Topsides)
Since the gas lift riser is close to the FPSO and since methanol can easily be
delivered to the riser, the flowline does not need to be blown down to remove a
hydrate plug in the gas lift riser. Flow in the flowline will actually help to remove the
plug since it will warm up the lower portion of the gas lift riser.
Note: There are many possible scenarios regarding the plug location in the gas lift
riser. It is assumed that the plug does not form between the gas lift riser
pressure sensor and Gas Lift Injection Valve (GLIV) 1 or between the gas lift
riser pressure sensor and the methanol injection point. If either of these
cases occur, the following remediation methods will still work, but the
pressure gradient in the riser will tend to move the plug in the wrong direction
(away from the flowline). However, due to the small volumes in these
sections, there is not enough energy to move the plug any significant
distance.
If the plug is located downstream of the gas lift riser pressure sensor in the gas lift
riser, refer to Figure 3.20 for a description of the remediation process. The first step
should be to try and push the hydrate into the flowline. Close GLIV2, open GLIV1
and then use the methanol line to pressurise the gas lift riser to the maximum
pressure (pressure measured at the gas lift riser pressure). Maintain this pressure
on the upstream end of the plug and monitor the rate at which methanol is being
injected into the gas lift riser. If the hydrate plug is solid, then the methanol volume
will be very near zero. If the plug is moving or is porous enough to allow methanol to
flow through, then some finite volume of methanol is needed to maintain the
pressure in the gas lift riser. If after 6 hours, the pressure in the riser section has not
changed and the volume of methanol injected is zero, then this method is not likely
to work. Conversely, if methanol continually needs to be injected into the
gas lift riser, then eventually the plug will either be melted or pushed into the flowline.

Section 3 Hydrate Remediation Guidelines

OPRM-2003-0302D

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Unrestricted

If increasing the pressure with methanol does not remove the hydrate plug, then the
gas lift riser will need to be blown down in order to remove the hydrate plug.
GLIV1 should be closed and then the gas lift riser can be fully depressurised
(topside gas lift riser and gas lift riser pressure are as low as possible). The valve
upstream of the methanol injection point (GLIV2) is then closed and methanol is
injected to pressurise the section between GLIV1 and GLIV2. The valve between
the hydrate plug and the methanol-filled section (GLIV1) is then opened. Methanol
can then be used to pressurise the section of the gas lift riser between the hydrate
plug and GLIV2. At this point, the pressure on the methanol side of the plug should
be greater than the flowline so that when the plug releases, it will move towards the
flowline. If the plug does not release within 60 to 90 minutes, then the above
process should be repeated. The time expected to remove a plug in the gas lift riser
using the above method should be less than 1 day (24 hours).
For the case when the plug is upstream of the methanol injection point, refer to
Figure 3.21. The figure shows that the plug is between GLIV2 and the flowline,
but this may not necessarily be true. Therefore, the pressure in the gas lift riser
should be increased (or decreased) to a pressure that is 14bar (200psig) greater
than the riser base pressure, leaving GLIV2 open.
Open GLIV1 to relieve the pressure downstream of the plug to the flowline pressure,
and then close GLIV1. Inject methanol into the gas lift riser and increase pressure
until it is slightly less than the gas lift riser topsides pressure. Repeat this process
every 60 to 90 minutes until plug releases. The time required to remove a plug using
this method should be in the order of a day. However, this case is less likely to
succeed than the other gas lift riser scenario (refer to Figure 3.20) and other
remediation techniques may be necessary.

Section 3 Hydrate Remediation Guidelines

OPRM-2003-0302D

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Unrestricted

Close GLIV2 and open GLIV1

Close GLIV1 and GLIV2

Use methanol to maintain


the maximum pressure in
the gas lift riser

Open GLIV2 and depressurise


the gas lift riser

Monitor the gas lift pressure for


6 hours for any sudden pressure
decrease and/or communication
with riser base pressure,
monitor amount of methanol
injected into gas lift riser

Close GLIV2

Inject methanol into gas lift riser


to maximum pressure

Open GLIV1

Use methanol to increase gas lift


riser pressure to maximum

Is the
injected volume of
methanol greater than
zero?

No

Monitor the gas lift pressure for


any sudden pressure decrease
and/or communication with
riser base pressure

Yes

Pressure
equalisation within 60 to 90
minutes?

Yes

Start methanol injection


and begin gas lift

No

Close GLIV1

Continue injecting methanol


until plug releases

Open GLIV2 and depressurise


the gas lift riser

OPRM20030302D_057.ai

Figure 3.22 Remediation Procedure for a Hydrate Plug in the Gas Lift Riser
(Between Methanol Line and the Flowline)

Section 3 Hydrate Remediation Guidelines

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 41 of 64

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Unrestricted

Close GLIV1 and GLIV2

Increase/decrease gas lift riser


topside pressure to 14bar (200psig)
above riser base pressure

Inject methanol into gas lift riser


until pressure equals the gas
lift riser topside pressure

Open GLIV1 to reduce


pressure at gas lift riser to
riser base pressure

Open GLIV2

Monitor gas lift pressure for


any sudden pressure increase
and/or communication with gas
lift riser topside pressure

Pressure
equalisation?

Yes

Start methanol injection


and begin gas lift

No

Close GLIV1 and GLIV2

OPRM20030302D_061.ai

Figure 3.23 Remediation Procedure for a Hydrate Plug in the Gas Lift Riser
(Between Methanol Line and Topsides)

Section 3 Hydrate Remediation Guidelines

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 42 of 64

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Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

4.6

Water Injection Wells

4.6.1

Hydrate Plug Formation

Unrestricted

The most likely scenario in which a plug may form in one of the water injector wells
is during a shut-in, which is performed within a few days of initial start-up. Since the
Bonga water injection wells are completed into the oil zone, it is possible for gas to
migrate back into the well and accumulate where the temperature and pressure are
in the hydrate stable region. This involves the occurrence of two situations, gas
migration into the well (from the reservoir) and a leaking SCSSV that allows gas to
migrate up to the tree. Although hydrates would form during shut-in, they would not
be noticed until start-up. During water injection, there is no hydrate risk. The risk
also decreases with time as more water is injected into the reservoir and the gas
front is pushed further away from the wellbore, which will make migration less likely
within the duration of shut-in. Based on experience at Petro-Canada, this problem of
gas migration was no longer a concern after about 6 weeks of water injection.
A hydrate plug in the water injection wells will be indicated by lack of flow into the
well (measured using the venturi meter). The pressure at the tree will also increase.
If the plug is in the wellbore, both the injection and inlet pressure will be the same.
If this is not the case, then the plug may be located in the tree or jumper instead of
the wellbore.
4.6.2

Hydrate Plug Remediation


Due to the lack of remediation options for the water injection wells, every attempt
should be made to minimise hydrates from forming. The best means for this is to
ensure that the SCSSV is closed during shut-in. Unfortunately, the SCSSV is not
gastight and may still leak in the closed position.
During shut-in, the plug may not have formed a solid mass, so if there is any reason
to suspect gas migration into the well, the water injection should be started up as
quickly as possible in an attempt to push any hydrate back down into the well.
Once it is verified that there is a plug in the water injection wells, the water pressure
can be increased in an attempt to move the plug below the SCSSV. In order to
make sure that the plug is pushed back below the SCSSV, make sure that at least
50 to 150 barrels of water are flowed into the well. However, this is unlikely to be
effective and may only create a more solid hydrate plug.
If a plug is detected during start-up, then every attempt should be made to localise
the plug and shut in the appropriate valves to prevent any further gas or hydrate
from moving back through the flowline even though this is a small risk. At this point
preparations should be made to intervene at the well to remediate the plug.

Section 3 Hydrate Remediation Guidelines

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 43 of 64

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Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Unrestricted

Figure 3.24 Schematic of Hydrate Plug in Water Injection Line

Section 3 Hydrate Remediation Guidelines

OPRM-2003-0302D

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Unrestricted

Appendix 3A
Pressure Tags
Table of Contents
TABLES
Table 3A.1 Pressure Tags for Production Wells ................................................................46
Table 3A.2 Pressure Tags for Production Flowlines ..........................................................47
Table 3A.3 Pressure Tags for Water Injection Wells..........................................................48

Section 3 Appendix 3A Pressure Tags


OPRM-2003-0302D

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Unrestricted

Well No

Downhole
Pressure

Production
Pressure
(Upstream of Choke)

Outlet
Pressure
(Downstream of Choke)

690p1

01-PT-800

01-PT-801

01-PT-802

690p2

01-PT-804

01-PT-805

01-PT-806

702p14

01-PT-808

01-PT-809

01-PT-810

702p10

01-PT-812

01-PT-813

01-PT-814

702p15

01-PT-816

01-PT-817

01-PT-818

702p2

01-PT-820

01-PT-821

01-PT-822

702p4

01-PT-824

01-PT-825

01-PT-826

702p5

01-PT-828

01-PT-829

01-PT-830

702p9

01-PT-832

01-PT-833

01-PT-834

710p1

01-PT-836

01-PT-837

01-PT-838

710p2

01-PT-840

01-PT-841

01-PT-842

710p3

01-PT-844

01-PT-845

01-PT-846

710p4/803p1

01-PT-848

01-PT-849

01-PT-850

803p2

01-PT-852

01-PT-853

01-PT-854

803p3

01-PT-856

01-PT-857

01-PT-858

S690p3

01-PT-860

01-PT-861

01-PT-862

S690p4

01-PT-864

01-PT-865

01-PT-866

S702p3

01-PT-868

01-PT-869

01-PT-870

S702p6

01-PT-872

01-PT-873

01-PT-874

S702p7

01-PT-876

01-PT-877

01-PT-878

Table 3A.1 Pressure Tags for Production Wells


Section 3 Appendix 3A Pressure Tags
OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 46 of 64

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Unrestricted

Production
Flowlines

Manifold
Pressure

Riser Base
Pressure

Topside
Pressure

Gas Lift
Riser
Pressure
(between
GLIV1
and GLIV2)

PFL 08

03-PT-800

04-PT-812

04-PIT-304

04-PT-804

31-PIT-013

PFL 09

03-PT-801

04-PT-813

04-PIT-324

04-PT-805

31-PIT-023

PFL 11

03-PT-802

04-PT-814

04-PIT-344

04-PT-806

31-PIT-033

PFL 12

03-PT-803

04-PT-815

04-PIT-364

04-PT-807

31-PIT-043

PFL 05

03-PT-804

04-PT-810

04-PIT-404

04-PT-802

31-PIT-063

PFL 06

03-PT-805

04-PT-811

04-PIT-384

04-PT-803

31-PIT-053

PFL 03

03-PT-806

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

702p9

PFL 04

03-PT-807

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

690p1

PFL 01

03-PT-808

04-PT-808

04-PIT-444

04-PT-800

31-PIT-083

PFL 02

03-PT-809

04-PT-809

04-PIT-424

04-PT-801

31-PIT-073

Well No

Production
Manifold

710p1
710p2

PM1

Gas Lift
Riser
Topside
Pressure

710p3
702p2
702p15
PM2
710p4
803p3
702p10
PM3
702p14
702p5
PM4

690p2

PM5

702p4

Table 3A.2 Pressure Tags for Production Flowlines


Section 3 Appendix 3A Pressure Tags
OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 47 of 64

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Unrestricted

Well No

Injection
Pressure

Inlet
Pressure

690w1

01-PT-900

01-PT-901

690w4

01-PT-903

01-PT-904

702w1

01-PT-906

01-PT-907

702w2

01-PT-909

01-PT-910

702w4

01-PT-912

01-PT-913

702w5

01-PT-915

01-PT-916

702w6

01-PT-918

01-PT-919

702w9

01-PT-921

01-PT-922

710w1

01-PT-924

01-PT-925

702w8

01-PT-927

01-PT-928

710w3

01-PT-930

01-PT-931

803w2

01-PT-933

01-PT-934

803w4

01-PT-936

01-PT-937

R690w2

01-PT-939

01-PT-940

690w3

01-PT-942

01-PT-943

702w10

01-PT-945

01-PT-946

Table 3A.3 Pressure Tags for Water Injection Wells

Section 3 Appendix 3A Pressure Tags


OPRM-2003-0302D

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Unrestricted

Appendix 3B
Case Studies
Table of Contents
1.0

HYDRATE FORMATION IN FLOWLINE ....................................................................50


1.1

2.0

3.0

4.0

Case Study: Popeye ........................................................................................50

HYDRATE REMOVAL IN FLOWLINE ........................................................................51


2.1

Case Study: Tahoe ..........................................................................................51

2.2

Case Study: Petrobras.....................................................................................52

2.3

Case Study: Statoil ..........................................................................................52

2.4

Case Study: ARCO ..........................................................................................53

HYDRATE REMOVAL IN WELL.................................................................................58


3.1

Case Study: Popeye ........................................................................................58

3.2

Case Study: Auger...........................................................................................59

HYDRATE REMOVAL IN A CHEMICAL INJECTION LINE........................................60


4.1

Oregano...........................................................................................................60

Section 3 Appendix 3B Case Studies

OPRM-2003-0302D

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Unrestricted

1.0

HYDRATE FORMATION IN FLOWLINE

1.1

Case Study: Popeye


Taken from: AP Mehta et al, Fulfilling the Promise of Low-dosage Hydrate
Inhibitors: Journey from Academic Curiosity to Successful Field Implementation,
SPE Production and Facilities, February 2003, p73.
During steady-state operation, the flowline was being treated with methanol.
However, the volume of produced water was too large to be protected with the
methanol and hence the flowline was operating in the hydrate region. What was
observed during steady-state operation was that there was a slow gradual increase
in the pressure drop along the flowline, which is attributed to the formation and
accumulation of hydrates in the flowline. The figure below indicates variables that
would typically be measured and that show an observable indication of hydrate
formation. The pressure drop in the flowline shows a steady increase with the gas
rate showing a steady decline. Since the formation of hydrates in this system was
observable, actions could be taken to remove the hydrates before they accumulated
sufficiently to form a hydrate plug.

Section 3 Appendix 3B Case Studies

OPRM-2003-0302D

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Unrestricted

2.0

HYDRATE REMOVAL IN FLOWLINE

2.1

Case Study: Tahoe


Taken from: AP Mehta, Hydrate Plug Blockage and Remediation: Case Studies
from Operations in the Gulf of Mexico, EP 2001-3019.
Where
Tahoe Well #A4 experienced hydrate plugs in a 6in uninsulated flowline connecting
the well to the Bud Platform at Main Pass 252 over a distance of 12 miles. This was
part of the Tahoe Phase I development; in Tahoe Phase II, three additional gas
wells and one oil well were added as subsea tiebacks to newly built facilities at
Bud Lite, also at MP252. These new wells were also 6in, 12-mile, dual-uninsulated
flowlines and were Shells first foray into deepwater subsea tieback development.
The oil well Tahoe A3 has its own dedicated 4in x 8in pipe-in-pipe insulated
flowlines. Hydrates have formed in all Tahoe gas lines at one point or the other,
but each has been remediated quickly due to the ability of carrying out a two-sided
depressurisation. A hydrate plug was also reported in March 1999 in the Tahoe
oil line.
How
Methanol is injected on a continuous basis in the Tahoe gas lines to prevent
hydrates. The expected sea-bottom temperature is 46F (at a water depth of 1500ft),
with pipeline pressures varying from 2500 to 3300psig. The subcoolings at Tahoe
are on the order of 25 to 30F, under normal flowing conditions. Hydrates are
believed to have formed in Tahoe A4 due to failure of the methanol pump. Gradual
pressure build-ups were observed in the gas line, but went unnoticed until a plug
had formed. Alarms on the pressure monitors and pump were also not geared to
pick up on the pump failure.
In the case of the Tahoe A3 oil well, hydrate formation was more unexpected. Tahoe
A3 was operating with a water cut of less than 1%. This was based upon a Base
Sediment and Water (BS&W) of <1% obtained in simple shake-out tests. During
these tests, it also appeared that the water was present as a tight emulsion, one that
did not easily break out. During a shut-in at Tahoe A3, the low water cut led field
personnel to assume that hydrates would not form in this oil line. Upon restart, after
a 36-hour shut-in, a hydrate blockage was found. Presumably, the hydrates formed
from the water that settled out over the duration of the shut-in and came into contact
with the hydrate formers abundantly dissolved in the oil phase. This hydrate
blockage was another reminder that hydrates can and do form in oil systems, and
that a low water cut is a poor indicator of the hydrate-forming potential of an oil.
Plug Remediation
The hydrate plug in both Tahoe lines (gas and oil) was remediated by two-sided
depressurisation. In the gas line, plug dissolution was relatively rapid. Methanol was
also being injected into the gas line, which may have helped in dissolving the
hydrate plug. The oil line was recommissioned by injecting methanol continuously
upon restart until the pipeline had warmed up to a temperature well above the
hydrate formation temperature.

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Key Learnings
Monitoring the efficiency of methanol injection pumps is critical in operating gas
flowlines requiring continuous inhibition. A surveillance plan for early detection of
pump malfunctioning or failure by the addition of alarms is required for smooth
operations.
Hydrates can and do form in oil lines even at low water cuts. The water cut is a poor
indicator in determining whether a line can form a hydrate blockage.
For planned shut-ins, methanol should be injected in sufficient quantities to ensure a
cold restart. If methanol could not be injected prior to a shut-in, blowing down the
line to ensure that it stays outside the hydrate region is recommended.

2.2

Case Study: Petrobras


Taken from: ED Sloan, Offshore Hydrate Engineering Handbook, Case Study C20.
Petrobras reported a hydrate blockage in a subsea manifold, located at around
2000ft water depth. The manifold was initially loaded with water, and was not
drained and loaded with ethanol prior to production start-up, as is normal practice.
Consequently, a hydrate plug formed in the manifold, blocking valves in a production
line. However, production was maintained through a test production line.
Two methods were attempted to dissociate the pipeline. First, ethanol was injected
into the manifold to begin dissociation. Some dissociation did occur (indicated
by pressure increases), but the hydrate plug was still present after 2 days.
Depressurisation of the manifold was then used to dissociate the plug.
Depressurisation was carried out on both sides of the plug, dissociating the plug in
12 hours. Start-up of the pipeline was carried out by filling the manifold with ethanol
and then resuming production.
Overall, the hydrate plug was in the manifold for 60 days, but production was
maintained throughout that time via a test production line. During depressurisation,
all production from the wells flowing into the manifold had to be shut down. The total
economic loss due to the hydrate was 31,500bbl oil and the wages of two engineers
(1 week) and two technicians (3 days).

2.3

Case Study: Statoil


Taken from: Gjertsen et al, Removal of a Gas Hydrate Plug from a Subsea
Multiphase Pipeline in the North Sea Proc BHR Group 1997 Multiphase 97
Conference.
In January 1996, Statoil (Gjertsen et al, 1997) depressurised a hydrate plug in a
North Sea line, which was alternatively used as a black oil producer and a gas
injector to maintain reservoir pressure. The oil and water production rates were
18,000ft3/day and 16,242ft3/day respectively, and the gas to oil ratio was usually
100 to 360scf/ft3, a fairly low value.
Since the plug was about midway along the 1.6 mile pipeline, there was not an
option of using an inhibitor because pipeline topology prevented inhibitor contact
with the plug. Since there were no connections at the well the plug had to be
depressurised from the platform side only. By considering the hydrate formation
curve it was determined that the plug equilibrium pressure was 261psia but that ice
would form when the pressure was below 115psia.

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During dissociation the pressure was decreased in steps, and a slow bleedthrough
was observed from 0 to 73 hours, from 73 to 90, 95 to 105 hours, and from
105 through 120 hours. During the time prior to 120 hours, the pressure was above
the hydrate equilibrium pressure, and while the upstream pressure decreased
steadily, it never decreased to the downstream pressure, indicating that the plug
was not very permeable to black oil. A second mechanism was that the light oil ends
may have been flashing to maintain a constant pressure upstream. However,
the increase in downstream pressure occurred much more rapidly as the
downstream pressure was lowered, indicating that the plug was porous, even to the
black oil.
After about 120 hours the line pressure was maintained between 145 to 261psia
downstream of the plug. The plug dissociated about 50 to 60 hours after the
downstream pressure had been reduced sufficiently for melting by heat influx from
the ocean. This was indicated by a sudden upstream pressure decrease from
1890psig to 1160psig, while the downstream pressure increased from 218psig to
1015psig during the same period. The pressure was decreased to 145psig and kept
there for over 30 hours to melt the remainder of the hydrates.
Restart of the well was accomplished 2 weeks after the original plug developed.
This case is another indication of the long times required to remediate a
hydrate plug.
In 1996 a Statoil black oil pipeline plug occurred in the Norwegian sector of the
North Sea. After several precautions, the pipeline was depressurised from one side
of the plug, and when the plug had melted the line was maintained at atmospheric
pressure for over 1 day to eliminate the light components, which might
form hydrates.
Before start-up, methanol was injected in the amount of 530 gallons in the 6in ID,
1.6 mile line from the platform. The pipeline was then pressurised with diesel from
the platform to the subsea valve in an amount which indicated that the pipeline was
nearly empty of liquid after the previous depressurisation to atmospheric conditions.
A further injection of diesel corresponding to two pipeline volumes was pumped into
the pipeline and well. Subsequently the well and the pipeline were put into
production without any hydrate problems.

2.4

Case Study: ARCO


Taken from: ED Sloan, Offshore Hydrate Engineering Handbook, Case Study 14:
Plug Formation
Setting
The gas field is located in the southern North Sea and consists of three subsea
wells, flowing into a subsea manifold with a capacity of four well inputs. This wells
gas compositions, temperature and pressure promote hydrate formation,
consequently Monoethylene Glycol (MEG) is injected into the manifold and
wellheads to thermodynamically inhibit hydrates. The inhibited water, gas and
condensate is then pumped through a 22 mile, trenched, insulated export pipeline to
a processing platform where water is removed from the condensate. The MEG in
the pipeline is recycled and piped back to the manifold via a 3in pipeline
piggybacked to the export line.

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Blockage
On April 14th, 1996 an unusually large liquid slug overran the platform primary
separator causing a temporary shutdown. The liquid slug was remediated,
but complete blockage of the pipeline had occurred during shutdown. It was
hypothesised that the blockage was a result of a hydrate plug. The reasons were:

The pipeline-free water, recovered during depressurisation at the platform,


did not contain MEG inhibitor. The 3in MEG inhibitor line had ruptured

Through backpressurisation the blockage was found to be 150m away from the
platform. At this location, the pipeline exited the mud line allowing contents to be
rapidly cooled by ocean currents, causing hydrate formation

Slight decreases in pressure determined that the blockage had some porosity.
This had also been observed for several Statoil hydrate plugs. (In contrast
however, two DeepStar Field trials formed low-porosity, low-permeability plugs,
which would transmit pressure very slowly and withstand high pressure drops)

A liquid slug, which shut down the compressors, was probably caused by a
partial hydrate plug pushing a fluid front down the pipeline as it moved

The blockages proximity to the platform posed serious safety concerns. Pipeline
depressurisation was necessary to dissociate the hydrate, however it had to be
done on both sides of the hydrate plug. If only the blockages platform-side was
depressurised, the pressure differential would cause a projectile to form which could
destroy the riser piping and damage the platform. The projectile would be life
threatening to workers on the platform and result in costly damages to the platform
itself. Consequently, depressurisation had to be done through both the platform and
the subsea manifold to ensure safety. Projectiles could form due to dissociation, if
gas became trapped within multiple plugs. Slow depressurisation was required
to remove pressure build-ups in the hydrate plug(s). Several methods
were considered.
Depressurisation Method
Initial Ideas
Three questions were raised to determine a proper depressurisation method:
(1)

Will the remediation process effectively depressurise the pipeline?

(2)

What is the cost of equipment and modifications?

(3)

How much time is needed to complete the remediation?

Based on these questions, process engineers, consultants, safety management and


diving specialists proposed three potential depressurisation methods. They were:
(1)

Jack-up Rig
Method:

Tow a jack-up rig to the site. From the rig, attach a high
pressure riser to the manifolds subsea tree and flare
exiting gas via the rigs flare stack.

Modification:

A spool piece would have to replace a non-return valve on


the manifolds fourth well intake.

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Time Required:

A drilling rig was not currently available, consequently a


delay of approximately 8 weeks was needed to locate a
suitable rig. The time required for hydrate removal could be
12 weeks.

Estimated Cost:

$1,980,000.

Feasibility:

The large amount of time required to locate a jack-up rig


made this an ineffective remediation method, useful in the
absence of other methods.

MEG Injection Line


Method:

Connect the subsea manifolds spare fourth flange to the


3in MEG pipeline and flare gas at the platform.

Modification:

Subsea work would require a spoolpiece installed between


the two pipelines. Secondly, a method of injecting methanol
was needed to prevent future hydrate growth. The platform
(while in operation) required significant modification to
connect the MEG pipeline to its flare stack. To further
complicate the matter, all of the MEG currently in the
pipeline would need to be stored on the platform, which had
limited storage space.

Time Required:

6 to 8 weeks.

Estimated Cost:

Unknown, expected to be higher than the other methods


based on the large amount of modifications that were
required.

Feasibility:

Substantial modifications to the platform made this


remediation method costly and impractical. It was deemed
unusable in any circumstance.

FPSO
Method:

Connect an FPSO with a processing plant and flare to the


subsea manifolds fourth flow loop and process the
exiting gas. The connection between the manifold
and FPSO would be made through a high-pressure,
flexible riser.

Modification:

The platform required no modifications. A diving rig was


required to do the subsea work. A valve skid containing
both Emergency Shutdown Valves (ESDVs) and a MEG
injection valve was also needed. The flexible riser and the
manifold would be connected with a spoolpiece.

Time Frame:

A FPSO was available for immediate use, consequently the


required time was expected to be 6 to 8 weeks.

Estimated Cost:

$1,906,000.

Feasibility:

This method proved to be the most feasible. The immediate


availability of a FPSO and diving rig allowed modifications
to begin. It was estimated that the FPSO could be at the
site and begin within 2 weeks.

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Establishing Procedures/Permits
It took approximately 2 weeks to develop potential remediation processes.
Procedures were then written to firmly establish the processes required for the
pipeline depressurisation. Procedures considered the safety, process and
co-ordination requirements between the diving rig and the FPSO. All parties were
educated about the tasks involved. Government permits were applied for at the
Health and Safety Executive (HSE) Pipeline Inspectorate and the Department of
Trade and Industry (DTI) Oil and Gas Office for additional gas flaring and well
modification. The permits were expedited by local agencies to prevent delay in
hydrate removal. 2 weeks were required to prepare procedures and permits for
depressurisation. In the meantime, the FPSO and diving rig were being equipped for
the operation and moving to the field.
Depressurisation of the Pipeline
The divers first task was to manually locate the subsea manifolds fourth intake and
to isolate it from any trees or flow loops. The fourth well intake was then modified
with a spoolpiece for connection with the high-pressure riser. The valve skid was
now ready to be put in place. Due to the sandy ocean bottom, it became necessary
to provide a foundation for the valve sled. The valve skid was placed on a concrete
mattress and then stabilised with gravel bag supports coupled with Tirfors,
chain blocks and ground anchors. This insured that no movement would transfer
from the flexible riser to the valve skid. The valve skid contained ESDVs and a MEG
injection system for the pipeline.
The diving rig then inspected the flexible riser route to ensure that is was clear of
debris. It proceeded to deploy 920ft of the high pressure riser via a tugger rigged
with a dead-mans anchor. The MEG in the riser provided some buoyancy,
consequently the line was anchored through concrete mattresses. A 5 tonne clump
weight was placed at the bottom of the riser with a buoyancy collar attached to
the surface.
The FPSO could only process gas at 600psig, consequently it required some
modification to process the 1300psig pipeline gas. Additionally, a quick-release
valve (QVD) was needed to enable the FPSO to escape from the riser in case of an
emergency. This complicated the design because current quick-release valves could
not withstand pressures of 1300psig. Initial design placed choke valves in the riser
to reduce pressure for the quick-release valve, however this caused control
problems and was deemed impractical.
An innovative new quick-release valve was developed with a standard valve weak
link with three additional hydraulic jacks for manual release. This valve could
withstand 1500psig of pressure, allowing choke valves to be placed on the ships
deck, which simplified control issues. This design enabled a safe, simplified, control
of gas pressures from the deck of the FPSO.
The buoyancy of the riser prohibited pipeline intake through the FPSOs moonpool.
Spoolpieces were used to allow riser intake from the side of the ship deck. The riser
was also steam traced with 1000ft of 1in piping to maintain the minimum process
temperature required by the FPSO. All valves and risers were tested and shown to
be in working order. Overall the modification and instalment procedures required
1 week before pipeline depressurisation could begin.

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Determining the Pipeline Minimum Pressure


Reducing pipeline pressure too much could result in ice formation. This causes
significant problems because ice melting might have required significantly more
time, than hydrate dissociation. Ice formation was prevented through use of the
hydrate equilibrium curve for the field.
At constant low pressure, hydrates will continually dissociate, maintaining the
equilibrium temperature at that given pressure. The equilibrium pressure at 32F
was 200psig. To prevent ice formation, the pipeline pressure could not drop below
175psig. Consequently, the FPSO reduced the pipeline pressure to 185psig to
maximise hydrate dissociation without ice formation.
Depressurisation
23 days were required to completely dissociate the pipeline hydrate. Heat transfer
between the ocean and the pipeline was slow because the line was trenched and
insulated in the sea floor. Dissociation was slightly facilitated by occasional
backpressuring which drew methanol into the plug. Backpressuring also proved
beneficial in determining the location of the plug.
The pressure was monitored for 12 hours after the hydrate was thought to be
dissociated. No pressure variation was noticed so the flexible riser was recovered
and the depressurisation apparatus dismantled. Throughout the whole operation,
no equipment failure occurred and the operation progressed smoothly.
Recommissioning the Pipeline
After the hydrate was dissociated, there remained significant amounts of free water
in the pipeline. The pipeline had to be recommissioned carefully to prevent
reformation of hydrates. Above normal amounts of MEG were added to the system
before pipeline start-up. One gas well was opened and the platform flow was high to
maintain low pressure, preventing hydrate formation. The high intake caused a high
gas velocity, which facilitated rapid water removal. The first 12-hour night shift
reported 7000ft3 of water received from the separator, the water which would result
from a 1.25 mile long (non-porous) hydrate plug. The high flow rate of gas was
maintained until the water contained 40% MEG, ensuring that the line was fully
inhibited. The pressures and intakes were then returned to normal operating levels.
Conclusions
The remediation team removed the hydrate plug efficiently. They achieved a
monumental task in a very short period of time, preventing more severe economic
losses. The procedure and methodology followed could be applied to many different
situations. Communication, clear objectives and excellent resources helped in
removing the hydrate plug.
Despite the efficient remediation effort, the economic impact of the hydrate plug was
substantial. The cost of depressurising the pipeline was almost 3 million dollars,
without counting lost production. On top of this, relations between the buyers and
producers were tested, due to lack of production. Fortunately, good initial relations
between the two reduced the impact of the disruption. This case study shows the
potential financial loss that can result from hydrate plugs. Hydrate prevention is key
in preventing significant economic and production losses.

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3.0

HYDRATE REMOVAL IN WELL

3.1

Case Study: Popeye


Where
A hydrate plug was formed in the Popeye A4 well. The plug was detected upon
initial start-up after completion of the well. The well contained some residual
completion fluids including an NH4Cl solution.
How
The well was shut-in with the residual completion fluids and a mixture of CaCl2/MEG
was dumped into the well. It was believed that the CaCl2/MEG mixture was sufficient
to inhibit the formation of hydrates. However, later analysis revealed that the
combination of the CaCl2/MEG mixture and the residual NH4Cl in the well did not
provide sufficient hydrate inhibition and hydrates were formed.
Plug Analysis
The pressure at the wellhead varied between 3300psig (manifold pressure) and
5500psig (reservoir pressure). Based on the amount of methanol that could be
injected into the well, the hydrate plug was determined to be near the top of the well.
Plug Remediation
The plug was removed by cycling methanol into the well. Methanol was pumped into
the well up to 5500psig. This was then left at that pressure for about 1 to 2 hours.
Then the wellhead pressure was relieved to the manifold pressure of 3300psig.
The wellhead pressure was then monitored for signs of a pressure increase, which
was due to either the hydrate plug melting or gas leaking through the hydrate plug.
Once the pressure stopped increasing, methanol was again pumped into the well up
to 5500psig. With each successive pressure cycle, more methanol was able to be
pumped (indicating that the plug was either melting or being pushed down the well)
and the amount of time it took for the pressure to stabilise after opening to the
manifold increased. During the final pressure cycle, as the methanol was being
pumped into the well, the plug broke free and the wellhead pressure did not
increase as more methanol was pumped. During all of the pressure cycles,
the SCSSV remained open.
Key Learnings
In this case, the well was thought to contain fluids that were inhibited against
hydrate formation. If the well is to be shut in for any period of time, it is necessary to
verify exactly what fluids are currently present in the well and what needs to be
injected to ensure that hydrates will not form.

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Case Study: Auger


Taken from: AP Mehta, Hydrate Plug Blockage and Remediation: Case Studies
from Operations in the Gulf of Mexico, EP 2001-3019.
Where
A hydrate plug had formed in the Auger A1 well soon after completion and
commissioning in July 1994. The well was producing oil with no detectable water
based upon shake-out tests. The well had been shut-in soon after start-up due to a
hurricane in the Gulf of Mexico.
How
The Auger hydrate plug was yet another reminder that an undetectable water cut,
based upon shake-out tests, is not a good indicator of a fluids potential to form
hydrates. Auger well A4 had been in production for at least 14 hours prior to being
shut in (by closing the wing valve). The subsurface safety valve was shut in 2 hours
later. Some completion fluids were expected to remain in the well even though it had
been flowing for 14 hours. Upon shut-in, it is believed that water droplets dispersed
in the oil (present as BS&W, not free water) would have quickly settled out.
In addition any slugs of completion fluids would also be settling out upon shut-in.
These water droplets and completion fluids would possibly be forming a thin layer of
water along the tubing wall (since the well flowed liquid full) and initiate hydrate
formation. Further contact with falling water upon shut-in could easily result in a
hydrate plug since no methanol was injected into the well prior to shut-in.
Plug Analysis
Auger Well A4 had a shut-in pressure of about 7200psig and the crude bubble point
is around 5500psig. The sea-bottom temperature is expected to be approximately
40F. At 7200psig, the hydrate dissociation temperature is ~85F, assuming that the
water is fresh. This provides a tremendous driving force of over 45F for the
hydrates to form when the oil/gas comes into contact with any free water.
The hydrate blockage at Auger formed during restart of the well. The SCSSV at a
depth of 6000ft below the mudline could not be opened and it was initially suspected
to be the location of the hydrate plug. The well was pressured up to as high
as 10,000psig and bled down several times to open up the SCSSV. These attempts
were unsuccessful. A wireline tagged the plug at 1290ft. It was decided by the
remediation task force to use glycol or methanol to dissolve the hydrate plug by
injection of these inhibitors from the wellhead.
Plug Remediation
Initially, hot water was circulated down a 0.5in tubing string in the annulus to warm
up and melt the hydrate, but no movement was observed. Glycol was then pumped
from the surface and methanol was injected about 100ft above the SCSSV, but this
too did not help. At this stage a coiled tubing unit was mobilised.
A 1.25in coiled tubing unit was rigged up and a mixture of 50% methanol
(by volume) in water was circulated through four 0.25in nozzled from the base of
the tubing. The circulation rate was set at 0.5bbls/min. The unit first encountered
hydrates at 2136ft and these were easily washed down to 2970ft. Several hard
plugs were observed at depths down to 3270ft, where the unit broke through
washed down to 4700ft. According to Steve Norton of Shell Offshore Incorporated
(SOI), the coiled tubing unit does not easily feel the presence of hydrates but
recognised their presence only after breaking through them.

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During the period of plug remediation, Veet Kruka and Fred Trascher at Westhollow
conducted some experiments with Triethylene Glycol (TEG) and methanol to
determine the rate at which they can melt a solid plug of hydrates. Tetrahydrofuran
(THF) was selected as the hydrate former since it is completely miscible in water
and forms hydrates easily at 4C. The tests indicated that TEG could dissolve and
disperse a hydrate plug in a stagnant column at least an order of magnitude higher
than methanol. Based upon this work it was estimated that glycol sitting on top of ice
in a wellbore would penetrate it at about 4in/hr and a 10ft/sec jet would penetrate
at 3ft/hr.
Key Learnings
A major learning from the Auger plug incident was the need to inhibit any wet oil
prior to a cold well start-up. If the water that accumulated in the wellbore had been
dosed with methanol prior to shut-in it would have prevented hydrates from forming.
Continuous methanol injection for a limited amount of time until the well reaches
a safe operating condition is essential to prevent hydrates upon an unexpected
shut-in. The safe condition time for a well is typically the time required for the fluid to
attain a temperature high enough to allow a minimum of 8 hours of cooldown time
prior the fluid entering into the hydrate region.
The optimal inhibitor for dissolving a hydrate plug depends on the nature and
location of the plug. Laboratory tests indicate that glycol may be more effective than
methanol in melting a plug in a static column since it can keep penetrating the plug
due to its higher density. Methanol may form a thin pad above the dissolved hydrate
with the liberated water, which would prevent its further progress down the plug,
thus decreasing its ability to melt it effectively.

4.0

HYDRATE REMOVAL IN A CHEMICAL INJECTION LINE

4.1

Oregano
Oregano MeOH Umbilical Plugging Event Cause and Plan for Remediation
From: Kevin Cooper
Date: 01/21/2003
Summary
The primary umbilical tubes supplying Methanol (MeOH) to the Oregano subsea
field have been plugged. Indications are that the event that caused the plugging
occurred on 12 December, 2002. The plugging event occurred due to an
instantaneous pressure spike at the open CIT2 methanol injection valve causing
backflow of well fluids into the methanol service umbilical. The valve is located
downstream of the subsea choke and is often used for treatment of the subsea tree
during shut-ins.

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Cause of Plugging Event


While in preparation for normal monthly well testing, the Oregano #1 well was
shut in for preparation to test the Oregano #2 well. MeOH injection was started into
the OR1 tree to treat the wellbore, tree and jumper against hydrate formation.
Pressure was bled off of the portion of the tree where the methanol was to be
injected through the CIT2 valve by closing the choke and opening the Pipeline
Shutdown Valve (PSDV) downstream of the choke. At this point, pressure was bled
to the flowline pressure, which was approximately 3000psi. The chart below
contains the PI data recorded during the event. When the CIT2 valve was opened,
the topsides methanol pump pressure was approximately 2000psi with a
corresponding pressure at the CIT2 valve of 3200psi including the hydrostatic head
of methanol. At this point there was sufficient topsides methanol pump pressure to
inject chemical into the tree. During the operation, the choke was commanded open
and the PSDV was commanded shut. This is normal operating procedure for
treating the tree and wellbore for shut-in as long as equalisation across the tree
valves is performed first. However, when the choke was opened and the PSDV was
closed, the shut-in tubing pressure was allowed into the tree downstream of the
choke at the opened CIT2 valve and the topsides pump pressure plus methanol
hydrostatic head was not sufficient to prevent the backflow of hydrocarbons into the
methanol injection line. At the time the choke was commanded open and the PSDV
was commanded shut, the shut-in tubing pressure was approximately 5000psi.
At this time, the topsides pump pressure was 2800psi. Including the head of
methanol and friction losses in the line, the pressure differential across the valve
was on the order of 2000psi. It appears that backflow and plugging extended
through the OR1 steel flying lead to the Umbilical Termination Head (UTH) and
possibly up the main umbilical where the methanol circuit is common for both of the
Oregano wells. It is not clear at this time whether the plug is a hydrate, emulsion or
floc. As a result of the backflow into the common part of the umbilical, injection into
both wells through the normal means is not currently possible.
System Redundancy
Methanol injection into the system is currently available through the annulus vent
umbilical line. However, this line is the only means of annulus service for both
Oregano and Serrano because the line is common to both fields. Therefore, extreme
caution must be taken during operations involving this line such as annulus bleeds
or methanol injection so that the ability to inject into the line is not jeopardised.
Operations guidelines must be strictly adhered to at all times.
The Oregano system does have additional umbilical tubes that are not currently in
use that could potentially be used for methanol service. Specifically, the asphaltene
solvent and the scale inhibitor lines appear to be feasible substitutes. Plans are
currently being developed to perform the work required to commission these lines
for use if remediation attempts prove to be unsuccessful.

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Plan for Remediation


The current strategy to remediate the plugged umbilical is to perform a double-sided
depressurisation of the Oregano system. This will facilitate pumping against and
moving the plug with as large a pressure differential as possible. If the plug is a
hydrate, the depressurisation will also promote faster melting of the plug. If this
operation is not successful, it is envisaged that the unused asphaltene solvent tube
and/or the unused scale inhibitor tube will be commissioned for methanol service or
a minor intervention chosen to clear the methanol circuit. Remediation procedures
are currently under development and will be added as appendices to this document
when they are completed.
Prevention of Future Plugging Events
In order to prevent such events, it is essential that individuals who are tasked with
performing routine operations on the subsea systems have adequate training and
are well aware of the systems response to valve movements and large pressure
differentials. It is also essential that the subsea operating guidelines be precise and
provide clear guidance for such operations. Though the Oregano operating guideline
does include procedures for pressure equalisation across valves, it does not
completely address the instantaneous pressure increase due to valve movements
that caused the backflow and line blockage. The guideline is currently under review
and will be updated to ensure adequate procedures.

Section 3 Appendix 3B Case Studies

OPRM-2003-0302D

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Appendix 3C
Nomenclature
AWV

Annulus Wing Valve

bbls
blpd
bpd

Barrels
Barrels of liquid (oil and water) per day
Barrels per day

FPSO

Floating Production, Storage and Offloading Vessel

GLIV
GLR
GOM

Gas Lift Injection Valve


Gas Lift Riser
Gulf of Mexico

HDP

Hydrate Dissociation Pressure

KHI

Kinetic Hydrate Inhibitor

LDHI
LP

Low Dosage Hydrate Inhibitor


Low Pressure

MIV
MMSCF
MMSCFD

Methanol Injection Valve


Million Standard Cubic Feet
Million Standard Cubic Feet per Day

PFL
PIV
PM
PMV
PWV

Production Flowline
Pigging Isolation Valve
Production Manifold
Production Master Valve
Production Wing Valve

SCSSV
SITP
SWV

Surface Controlled Subsurface Safety Valve


Shut-in Tubing Pressure
Sacrificial Wing Valve

VIT

Vacuum Insulation Tubing

WC
WSV

Water Cut
Well Switching Valve

XOV

Crossover Valve

Section 3 Appendix 3C Nomenclature

OPRM-2003-0302D

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ADMINISTRATION AND DISTRIBUTION LIST


Reporting No:

OG-03.80112

Title:

Bonga Hydrate Remediation Guidelines

Subtitle:
Date of issue:

October 2003

Author(s):

DJ Peters, ER Cadena, AP Mehta, SD Iyer

Contributor(s):
Reviewed by:

GJ Hatton

OGUS-OGUA

Manager/(designated
alternative)

AD Leitko (Responsible for approving contents and


distribution of report)

OGUS-OGUA

Project Number:

52006219

ECCN Number:

EAR99

Activity Code:

52006219

Sponsor/Customer:

Shell International Exploration and Production, Inc

Keywords:

hydrate, Bonga, flow assurance, plug, remediation

Electronic file:

OG.03.80112.pdf

Issuing Library:

Westhollow Technology Center (WTC)

Distribution:

(Please add recipient info as complete as possible ie


company name, name, reference indicator; company name
and location in bold)

Number of
Copies

Shell Research & Technology Centre, Amsterdam (SRTCA)

Degree of Confidentiality:

Restriction on Distribution:
Additional Distribution:

Shell Canada Limited, DMS Library

Petro-Chemical Knowledge Center


Westhollow Technology Center

DJ Peters, OGUS-OGUA, HOU-WTC E-1467B

ER Cadena, OGUS-OGUA, HOU-WTC E-1460

AP Mehta, OGUS-OGUA, HOU-WTC E-1450

SD Iyer, SIEP-EPT-PDS, HOU-WCK REMOTE

AA Kaczmarski, SIEP-EPT-PDS, HOU-WCK 3340

M Bosha, SIEP-EPT-PDS, HOU-WCK 2316

KA Stevens, SIEP-EPT-PDS, HOU-WCK 3376

AR Green, SIEP-EPT-SDW, HOU-WCK 2114

W Schoppa, OGUS-OGUA, HOU-WTC E-1300

GJ Hatton, OGUS-OGUA, HOU-WTC E-1270

AD Leitko, OGUS-OGUA, HOU-WTC E-1420

 Unclassified

Shell Confidential 

Restricted to Shell Personnel Only (Standard)

Shell Confidential

Shell Most Confidential


Unshared

Any additional distribution (outside the above mentioned distribution list)


can only be effected with special permission of owner/custodian
(see above).

Section 3 Appendix 3C Nomenclature

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Section 4
Production Flowline Wax Assessment

Table of Contents
1.0

2.0

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY...............................................................................................4
1.1

Wax Deposition..................................................................................................4

1.2

Summary of Results...........................................................................................5

1.3

Recommendations .............................................................................................5

BACKGROUND............................................................................................................6
2.1

Sample Selection for the Present Study.............................................................6

2.2

Scope of Work ...................................................................................................7

3.0

PRODUCTION FLOWLINE LAYOUT AND PIPE CHARACTERISTICS.......................8

4.0

WAX-RELATED FLUID PROPERTIES.........................................................................9

5.0

6.0

7.0

8.0

4.1

Measurement Techniques..................................................................................9

4.2

Sampling and Basic Fluid Properties..................................................................9

4.3

Normal Paraffin Distributions ...........................................................................10

4.4

Critical Wax Deposition Temperatures .............................................................10

4.5

Kinetic Wax Deposition Rates..........................................................................12

WAX DEPOSITION SIMULATION RESULTS ............................................................13


5.1

East 10in Production Flowline Line ..................................................................14

5.2

East 12in Production Flowline Line ..................................................................17

5.3

West 10in Production Flowline Line .................................................................20

POUR POINT AND RESTART EVALUATION............................................................25


6.1

Dead Oil Pour Point .........................................................................................25

6.2

Live Oil Pour Point ...........................................................................................27

6.3

Gel Strength Measurement ..............................................................................27

6.4

Effect of Bonga Fluid Blending .........................................................................28

6.5

Impact on Chemical Treatment ........................................................................30

WAX RISKS AND WAX MANAGEMENT STRATEGY ...............................................30


7.1

Risks and Basic Management Strategy............................................................30

7.2

Surveillance and Adjustments to Management Strategy ..................................30

HEALTH, SAFETY AND ENVIRONMENT (HSE) .......................................................31

Section 4 Production Flowline Wax Assessment

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Table of Contents (contd)


TABLES
Table 4.1 List of Bonga Fluids Whose Wax Properties Were Measured ..............................6
Table 4.2 Production Flowline Data .....................................................................................8
Table 4.3 Basic Properties of B1 803 Oil .............................................................................9
Table 4.4 Comparison of Bonga Pour and Cloud Points....................................................10
Table 4.5 Measured Pour Points for Bonga B1 803 Sample NIG-O-129A .........................26
Table 4.6 Required Restart Pressures for Bonga Production Flowlines (PFL) ...................29
FIGURES
Figure 4.1 Production Flowline Layout.................................................................................8
Figure 4.2 Normal Paraffin Distributions for Various 803 Bonga Oils .................................11
Figure 4.3 Critical Wax Deposition Temperatures for Various Bonga Oils .........................11
Figure 4.4 Comparison of Kinetic Wax Deposition Rates for Bonga 803 Oils ....................12
Figure 4.5 FPSO Arrival Temperatures East 10in PFL ...................................................14
Figure 4.6 Deposition Onset Location East 10in PFL......................................................15
Figure 4.7 Deposit Growth Rate (in Maximum Thickness) East 10in PFL .......................15
Figure 4.8 Deposit Growth Rate (in Volume) East 10in PFL ...........................................16
Figure 4.9 Estimated Pigging Frequency East 10in PFL.................................................16
Figure 4.10 FPSO Arrival Temperatures East 12in PFL .................................................17
Figure 4.11 Deposition Onset Location East 12in PFL....................................................18
Figure 4.12 Deposit Growth Rate (in Maximum Thickness) East 12in PFL .....................18
Figure 4.13 Deposit Growth Rate (in Volume) East 12in PFL .........................................19
Figure 4.14 Estimated Pigging Frequency East 12in PFL...............................................20
Figure 4.15 FPSO Arrival Temperatures West 10in PFL ................................................21
Figure 4.16 Deposition Onset Location West 10in PFL...................................................22
Figure 4.17 Deposit Growth Rate (in Maximum Thickness) West 10in PFL ...................22
Figure 4.18 Deposit Growth Rate (in Volume) West 10in PFL ........................................23
Figure 4.19 Estimated Pigging Frequency West 10in PFL..............................................24
Figure 4.20 Pour Points of Bonga B1 702 and B1 803 Blends...........................................29

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Table of Contents (contd)


APPENDICES
Appendix 4A Sensitivity Analysis of CWDTS and Deposition Rates...................................32
Appendix 4B Pour Point Measurement Techniques and Uncertainties ...............................37
Appendix 4C Tables from Westrich (1999) Report (SIEP.99.6096)....................................38

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EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
The objective of this study is to assess the wax-related risks in the Bonga production
system. These risks include wax deposition under flowing conditions and oil gelling
(pour point) during shut-in conditions. The Bonga flowline system is quite complex,
comprising four flowline systems, five production manifolds and produced fluids from
four reservoirs. Adding to the complexity, the production at each manifold is not
always from a single reservoir, and some of the reservoirs are compositionally
graded (ie variations of wax-related properties within the reservoir). Further,
manifold temperatures are functions of the flow rates from each of the individual
wells. The resulting matrix of possible conditions is quite large.

1.1

Wax Deposition
Controlling Factors
Our approach is to examine the base-case risks and to study sensitivities to the key
variables. The key factors that determine wax deposition are:

Fluid composition and wax-related fluid properties:

Critical wax deposition temperature varies by fluid

Kinetic wax deposition rate varies by fluid

Flowline thermal profile, controlled by:

Flowrate production variable; expected Qfl > 10MBPD/flowline

Manifold temperature Tman controlled by well flowrate; expected Tman >


49C (120F) in most cases

Flowline insulation fixed in system selection

Line size fixed in system selection

Base Case
Based on this information, the base case was chosen to be:

Qfl = 10MBPD

Tman = 49C

Worst wax-related properties (B1 Well 803 sand deposition rates and B2ST3
well 702 sand Critical Wax Deposition Temperatures (CWDTs)

All flowlines studied

Sensitivity Studies

Qfl = 5 and 20MBPD

Tman = 38 and 60C

Low wax-related properties found in the partially biodegraded crudes (B1 Well
803 sand and B2ST3 Well 803 sand CWDTs as well as B2ST3 Well 803 sand
deposition rates)

Section 4 Production Flowline Wax Assessment

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Summary of Results
Wax Deposition
There is no wax risk in the short (1 mile) flowlines, west of the FPSO.
Recommended pigging frequency is once per year for maintenance and
surveillance.
The wax risks in the long flowlines (east of the FPSO) are minimal if the conditions
are base case or better. Using Qfl > 10MBPD, Tman > 49C, and worst-case wax
properties, recommended pigging frequencies range from 2 to 3 times per year.
Wax risks increase substantially if either Qfl or Tman fall below base-case conditions.
Wax risks decrease substantially if the produced fluid has low wax deposition rates
(found in the partially biodegraded oils).
Pour Point and Gel Strength
A study has been made of the B1 Well 803 sand fluid, which has the highest pour
point of any Bonga fluid yet measured in our labs (maximum 4C, minimum -7C).
We have determined that this fluid is unlikely to exhibit a yield stress/gel strength
under shut-in pipeline conditions. We expect that no pour point depressant will be
required. These findings will be compared with those of chemical vendors when the
chemical tender results become available.

1.3

Recommendations
The wax deposition study has used Tman as a variable rather than connecting
specific well production functions to manifold temperatures. For this reason,
we recommend that a comparison be made of critical wax deposition temperatures
to case-specific manifold and arrival temperatures based on production functions
and wellbore thermal/hydraulic simulations.
Frequent surveillance is recommended for the produced fluid wax properties to
ensure that:

The fluid is arriving above the critical wax deposition temperatures in each
flowline

The produced fluid pour points have not increased

Section 4 Production Flowline Wax Assessment

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BACKGROUND
The wax-related properties of Bonga fluids have been assessed in several previous
studies (Refs 12, 13 and 25). The testing was not comprehensive across all
wells/sands, and some of the measurements were deemed to have high
uncertainties (Ref 25). Table 4.1 lists the fluids that had some wax properties
measured. Additional information is provided in Paragraph 4.0.
Well

Sand

Comments

B1

670

Low wax content and pour point

B1

702

Low pour point; cloud point similar to B1 803; CWDT higher

B1

710

Pour point, wax content slightly below B1 803

B1

803

Highest wax properties (except CWDT) from B1,


B2ST3 and B3ST samples

B2 ST3

702

Termed kinetically inhibited but highest CWDT

B2 ST3

803

Termed kinetically inhibited but high CWDT

B3 ST

690

Low wax content and pour point; cloud points lower than
B2ST3 702 and 803

B3 ST

702

Limited data; low wax content and pour point

702 W6

709

Highest wax properties, based on limited volume of


questionable sample

Table 4.1 List of Bonga Fluids Whose Wax Properties Were Measured

2.1

Sample Selection for the Present Study


Wax-related properties show a wide variation for Bonga fluids (Ref 25) and we
therefore recommended that an expected worst-case fluid be identified and tested
for wax deposition and pour point problems. As a general statement, the Bonga
crude oils appear to be from the same oil family (private communications from Erik
Tegelaar (SIEP-EPT-DE) and Nancy Utech (OGUS-OGUA)), and fluid property
variations are largely caused by secondary alteration processes (eg biodegradation,
water washing or gas stripping). Biodegradation has had a noticeable impact on the
Bonga wax-related fluid properties (lowering wax content, pour points and cloud
points). Therefore, the goal of the sample selection was to find a substantial volume
of a non-biodegraded Bonga oil.
At the time of the initial reports (Refs 12 and 25), the preferred fluid was expected to
be B1 Well 803 oil, classified as W0 no biodegradation. Subsequent to those
reports, sample was obtained from 702W6 Well 709 sand (Ref 17). Tests on this
showed low pour points (7 to 10C) and higher cloud points (29 to 33C) than the B1
Well 803 oil (21 to 24C). However, the 709 oil was received as an emulsion with
a rag layer; emulsion breaking and decanting left solids in the container that had to
be removed with solvent rinses. Both the sample and the High Temperature
Gas Chromatography (HTGC) analyses were reconstructed from the various
sub-samples. In addition, only limited sample was available (blowdown of one 600cc
SSB downhole sampling chamber). Owing to limited sample and questionable
quality, no additional analyses of 702W6 Well 709 oil are currently possible.

Section 4 Production Flowline Wax Assessment

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A sample of B1-Well 803 oil was found in storage in Nigeria and provided to
Shell Global Solutions for testing and evaluation; it is used in the present study.
While it cannot be guaranteed to have the absolute worst wax-related properties
at Bonga, it is certainly among the worst and should be adequate for wax flow
assurance measurements and models.

2.2

Scope of Work
The key points in the scope of work are listed below:

Wax Deposition

Measure wax-related fluid properties of a non-biodegraded, high pour point


fluid (B1 803): HTGC, pour point, cloud point, kinetic wax deposition rate

Verify wax deposition strategy by comparing range of CWDTs to expected


arrival temperatures of production flowlines; run HYSYS Wax Deposition for
selected cases if necessary

Follow-up/validate pigging frequency results given in oil offloading report;


report issued separately

Gelling/Pour Point

Challenge and assess if current strategy for treating high Pour Point (PP)
wells is valid; develop detailed procedures if necessary

Test gel strengths of high pour point fluid to determine level of concern; also
do pipeline restart tests if/when sample volumes become available (possibly
get samples during unloading)

Model restart of high pour point fluid if required

Investigate effect of mixing oils at manifolds and topsides; determine if


export oil should be treated for high pour point

Surveillance/Analysis

Specify requirements for sample analysis during development drilling and as


a part of surveillance after first oil

Section 4 Production Flowline Wax Assessment

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PRODUCTION FLOWLINE LAYOUT AND PIPE CHARACTERISTICS


The Bonga production concept brings all produced fluids from five Production
Manifolds (PMs) to an FPSO located in the middle of the field. Each PM combines
multiple wells with fluids from various pay sands. The West Field (ie west of the
FPSO) consists of two Production Flowline Loops (PFLs), namely, PFL 8/9 and
PFL 11/12 and the East Field consists of three PFLs, namely, PFL 1/2, PFL 3/4 and
PFL 5/6. Since PFLs 3/4 and 5/6 are connected together, they are considered
as one PFL for realistic wax deposition simulation. According to contractual
specifications in the basis of design (Bonga Field Development Plan, 2001), all PFLs
are of Pipe-in-pipe (PIP) configuration with an overall heat transfer coefficient (UOD)
of 0.187 to 0.194 Btu/hr-ft2-F (1.063 to 1.101W/m2-C) depending on pipe size.
Water depth is approximately 3400ft (1000m). Typical riser length is about 1700m.
A simplified schematic of the production flowline layout is shown in Figure 4.1.

West

East
PFL 3/4

PFL 8/9

PFL 5/6

FPSO
PFL 11/12
PFL 1/2

Figure 4.1 Production Flowline Layout


The West PFLs are about a mile long (1.8km) and the pipe size is 10in with an ID of
8.876in (22.6cm). The East PFLs range from 3.6 to 5.5 miles (5.8 to 8.8km) and the
pipe sizes vary from 10in to 12in with an ID of 8.876in to 10.62in (22.6 to 27cm).
Table 4.2 lists the flowline characteristics used in this study.
East 10in PFL
Parr (bar)

WC (%)

PIP ID
(cm)

Gas Lifted

PIP U Factor
2
(W/m -C)

Flowline
Length
(km)

21

22.6

No

1.063

8.8

Parr (bar)

WC (%)

PIP ID
(cm)

Gas Lifted

PIP U Factor
2
(W/m -C)

Flowline
Length
(km)

21

22.6

No

1.063

1.8

Parr (bar)

WC (%)

PIP ID
(cm)

Gas Lifted

PIP U Factor
2
(W/m -C)

Flowline
Length
(km)

21

27

No

1.101

5.8

West 10in PFL

East 12in PFL

Table 4.2 Production Flowline Data


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WAX-RELATED FLUID PROPERTIES


One objective of the current study was to validate the B1 803 oil sample
(NIG-O-129A) newly obtained from Nigeria. The sample was validated using cloud
point and HTGC measurements, after which kinetic wax deposition rates were
measured as input for the deposition studies. Appendix 4C contains all wax
properties obtained from Bonga Main fluids prior to the current report. The 670, 690,
702 and 710 sands show lower wax-related properties than 803 oil. (As noted
previously, the 709 sand in well 702W6 looks as bad or slightly worse than B1 803
oil, but the 709 sample is questionable.) These data show that B1 803 oil is
expected to be the worst case for wax-related fluid properties.

4.1

Measurement Techniques
Wax-related properties are determined from several in-house measurements.
These data are used as inputs and consistency checks to our thermodynamic and
transport models for wax deposition in flowlines and wells. Both the measurements
and models are described in Refs 11 and 12.

4.2

Sampling and Basic Fluid Properties


Data about samples and trends across the Bonga Main fields are available in
Refs 11 to 13 and 17. Major conclusions in those studies are that wax-related
properties vary both between and within reservoirs. The primary cause of this
variation is biodegradation, which metabolises paraffins and reduces cloud and pour
points. From those studies, the B1-well 803-sand fluid was identified as a primary oil
(in the geochemical sense; not biodegraded or otherwise altered) with the highest
known cloud and pour points of the available Bonga fluids. At the time in 1999,
this fluid was not available to Shell, but a sample has since been made available.
This sample has been analysed and the basic results are given in Table 4.3.
Cloud point was measured by the cold-finger technique, and maximum/minimum
pour points were measured according to the ASTM D5853-95 protocol.
Cloud Point
(C)
Well

B1

Sand

803

SAM ID

NIG-O-129A

WTC ID

6140

Gravity (API)

33.9

Cold
Finger

HTGC

35.6

37.0

Pour Points
(C)

4/-7

Table 4.3 Basic Properties of B1 803 Oil


Table 4.4 compares cloud points for Bonga Main fluids measured or derived by
Shell Global Solutions (and, previously, SEPTAR Flow Assurance) using consistent
cold-finger and HTGC methods. B1 803 oil has the highest pour and cloud point
values of any of the fluids excluding the questionable 702W6 709 oil.
A brief comparison was done between B1 803 oil and Bonga South West fluids.
The highest measured cloud points at Bonga SW were seen for the 803 and 812
oils. However, these values (29 to 32C including both cold-finger and HTGC
techniques) are lower than Bonga Main B1 803 oils. ASTM D97 pour points were 2
to 4C, similar to B1 803 oil. HTGC data were uniformly lower for the Bonga SW 803
and 812 oils than for B1 803 oil over the full carbon number range. This is further
evidence than B1 803 is a suitable choice as a representative end-member fluid.

Section 4 Production Flowline Wax Assessment

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Pour Point (C)


Well

Pay
Sand

SAM ID

B-3ST

690

NIG-O-88A

B-2ST3

702

NIG-O-85H

B-2ST3

803

NIG-O-84H

702W6

709

NIG-O-93X

B1

702

B1

803

ASTM
D97

ASTM
D5853

Cloud Point (C)


Cold
Finger

HTGC

Thermo
Model

15

24

18

<-45

22

32

31

<-45

20

32

31

10/7

29 to 33

38

34 to 35

NIG-O-128A

<-37/
<-37

22

28

NIG-O-129A

4/-7

36

37

Table 4.4 Comparison of Bonga Pour and Cloud Points

4.3 Normal Paraffin Distributions


Normal paraffin distributions were measured using quantitative high-temperature
gas chromatography. Figure 4.2 shows distributions from the 702 and 803 sands
sampled in the B1 and B2ST3 Wells. The B1 803 sample has the highest
concentrations over most of the carbon number range, which typically implies worse
wax-related properties. Interpretation of the chromatogram did not find indications of
biodegradation for this oil, indicating that is likely to be the (worst-case) end member
of the 803 fluids. The cloud point calculated from the HTGC correlation is 37C,
in excellent agreement with the measured value of 35.6C. This agreement is quite
different from the B2ST3 fluids (Ref 12), where the HTGC and lab values differed by
more than 10C. The large difference in those values was speculated to be possible
kinetic inhibition of crystallisation from biodegradation products; the fact that the
B1 803 fluid does not show this effect is indirect evidence that B1 803 should
behave as a primary oil.

4.4

Critical Wax Deposition Temperatures


Figure 4.3 shows the CWDTs calculated for three Bonga fluids: B2ST3 702, B2ST3
803 and B1 803. (CWDTs for B1 702 oil are not shown because the oil is
biodegraded and its normal paraffin concentrations are uniformly lower than B1 803.
Therefore, it cannot be a worst case.) Although the paraffin distributions for B2ST3
702 is lower than for B1 803, it has higher CWDTs owing to a lower API gravity
(density effects). For this reason, some of the deposition simulations use mixed
properties (ie B1 803 deposition rate and B2ST3 702 CWDTs) as a sensitivity study.
Note: A recalibration of our thermodynamic model since the original studies
(Ref 12) resulted in higher CWDTs for the B2ST3 fluids than in the original
reports. This effect is not substantial at expected arrival pressures. The new
results are used in this study.

Section 4 Production Flowline Wax Assessment

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10000

Concentration, ppm wt

Bonga B2ST3 702


Bonga B2ST3 803

1000

Bonga B1 702
Bonga B1 803

100

10

1
20

30

40

50
60
Carbon Number

70

80

Figure 4.2 Normal Paraffin Distributions for Various 803 Bonga Oils

46
B2ST3 803 Sand
B2ST3 702 Sand

Temperature, C

44

B1 803 Sand

42

40

38

36
0

50

100

150

200

250

300

350

400

Pressure, bar

Figure 4.3 Critical Wax Deposition Temperatures for Various Bonga Oils

Section 4 Production Flowline Wax Assessment

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Kinetic Wax Deposition Rates


Wax deposition rates were measured using the Shell cold-finger technique.
Figure 4.4 shows a comparison of the whole-oil deposition rates (correlations rather
than raw data are used to compare trends more easily). Looking at the B2ST3 803
data, the deposition rate at the HTGC cloud point of 32C yielded an extremely low
deposition rate. When measured at the laboratory cloud point of 21C, the rate
increased by more than an order of magnitude; however, the test temperature is well
below the expected arrival temperatures. The B1 803 oil sample, tested at its lab
cloud point of 36C, shows deposition rates much higher than the B2ST3 oil at
32C. Compared with the B2ST3 test at 21C, the B1 oil is also higher, at low Ts.
(Since the flowlines have pipe-in-pipe insulation, the low-T range is the appropriate
range for comparison.) Therefore, the B1 803 wax deposition rate is the worst case
for the fluids we have tested. The B1 803 oil has a lower degree of biodegradation
than the B2ST3 702 and 803 sands and, in general, less benign wax properties than
other Bonga oils analysed (Ref 25) (B1 well 690, 702 and 710 oils, B2ST3 well 702
and 803 oils, B3ST well 690 and 702 oils). Therefore, we consider the B1 803 wax
deposition rate to be a likely worst case for the Bonga oils seen to date.

Wax + Oil: B2ST3 @ 32 C


Wax + Oil: B2ST3 @ 21 C

Deposition Rate, mg/cm 2-hr

Wax + Oil: B1

@ 36 C

0.1

0.01

0.001
0

10

Oil-Wall T, C

Figure 4.4 Comparison of Kinetic Wax Deposition Rates for Bonga 803 Oils

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5.0

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WAX DEPOSITION SIMULATION RESULTS


We used HYSYS steady-state simulator (Version 2.4.2, Build 3874) to simulate wax
deposition in three selected production flowlines (ie two east lines and one west line)
that adequately represent the Bonga production scenario. A Shell proprietary wax
model (SD-HYPR-Extensions_WAX-2.3-GS) and a multiphase hydraulic routine
(GZM-NEWPRS) were also used. Pressure/Volume/Temperature (PVT) tuned fluid
compositions and flowline models (with topography, pipe and insulation properties)
were provided by Wade Schoppa. Fluid composition of 702 sand was used in all
simulations since it is the primary pay sand with the highest CWDTs obtained from
B2ST3 sample.
We selected a matrix of three manifold temperatures, ie 100F (38C), 120F (49C)
and 140F (60C), and three production rates, ie 5, 10 and 20MBLPD, to evaluate
the severity of wax deposition based on new deposition rates measured and new
CWDTs. According to previous studies, a realistic low manifold temperature is about
120F at a low rate of 10MBLPD based on minimum turndown rates specified in the
basis of design (Schoppa and Kaczmarski, 2001 and Schoppa, 2002). Similarly,
a manifold temperature of 100F can be expected at 5MBPD according to a
previous study (Schoppa, 2002). Both flowing wellhead temperatures and pressures
as a function of rate as well as steady-state arrival temperatures at the FPSO from
each PFL are not available to us at the start of the study.
All simulations were performed on a monthly basis (720 hours time period).
No water cut (ie 0%) is included in the production rates considered; thus, the results
are more conservative. According to production data provided by Sada Iyer, water
cut in late life can be as high as 80% in most PFLs.
Effect of gas lift at the riser base was also not included in this study. Possible
cooling could result from lift-gas injected at/near the riser base. Since heated lift-gas
is to be used (minimum specification of 90F as it enters the flowline), its effect on
temperature drop is expected to be smaller. However, substantial cooling by the
injected gas may occur if the lift-gas in the injection line is allowed to cool down to
seabed temperatures. Notice that this temperature reduction may result in higher
wax deposition in the riser section or PFL downstream of the gas injection point.
The effect is not quantifiable in this study.
Topside arrival pressure at the FPSO is set at about 300psi or 21bar (Bonga Field
Development Plan, 2001). In late life, the topside arrival pressures will be 170psi
(12bar) resulting in 1F increase in CWDT at topside conditions. A sensitivity check
on the effect of this temperature increase at the topside in the presence of high
water cut on current wax mitigation strategy is not indicated to be significant.
As a sensitivity check, wax depositions were ran on all three sets of CWDTs from
B2ST3 702 sand, B2ST3 803 sand and B1 803 sand with the same B1 803 sand
deposition rates. The results indicate minimum variation on deposit volume and pigging
frequency over the selected conditions (refer to Appendix 4A Paragraphs 1.0 to 3.0).
Results based on B2ST3 702 sand CWDTs are presented in Paragraph 5.1.
A sensitivity analysis was also performed on variation of the kinetic deposition rates
(using B2ST3 803 sand and B1 803 sand data for comparison) on flowline
deposition with the same B2ST3 702 sand CWDTs. The results indicate minimum
variation on deposit volume and pigging frequency over the selected conditions
using B2ST3 deposition rates (refer to Appendix 4A Paragraph 4.0). Therefore,
the use of deposition rates from B1 803 sand represents the worst case, as stated in
Paragraph 4.5.
Tabulated data are listed in Appendix 4A.

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5.1

Unrestricted

East 10in Production Flowline Line


A 10in (22.6cm ID) East PFL with a flowline distance of 5.5 mile (8.8km) was
selected for simulation (representing PFL 1/2).

5.1.1

Arrival Temperatures at FPSO


Figure 4.5 illustrates the arrival temperature range at various manifold temperatures
and production rates. Range of CWDTs (39 to 43C or 103 to 109F) is provided to
enhance comparison. As shown, the East 10in PFLs are in wax deposition range
for most of the conditions simulated (below 60C and 20MBLPD).

Bonga Main (East) - 8.8-km Flowline (22.6 cm ID)


60

FPSO Arrival Temperature (oC)

50

CWDT at 21 bar

40

30

20

38 C, Manifold Temp
10

49 C, Manifold Temp
60 C, Manifold Temp
0
0

10

15

20

25

Liquid Rate (MBLPD)

Figure 4.5 FPSO Arrival Temperatures East 10in PFL


5.1.2

Deposit Onset Location and Deposit Thickness


Figure 4.6 shows the location of wax deposition onset from topside and Figure 4.7
shows the deposit growth rate (in maximum deposit thickness per month) at various
conditions. As shown, onset location is a strong function of manifold temperature
and production rate; whereas, maximum deposit thickness (near riser base in most
of the cases) is relatively insensitive to changes in temperature and rate due to the
very low kinetic deposit rates of Bonga fluids (lower than the oils of most Shell global
assets we tested). The deposit growth rate (in maximum thickness) is about 0.006in
(0.15mm) per month. Notice this thickness is the maximum deposit thickness
possible in the entire PFL per month, not an averaged thickness over the deposited
area. Therefore, maximum thickness does not always correlate with total deposit
volume.

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At 140F (60C) manifold temperature, waxes are likely to deposit only in the riser
except for very low rates (such as 5MBLPD and below). If the manifold temperatures
happen to drop below 100F (38C), such as when the rates are low, wax deposition
is predicted in the wellbore.
Bonga Main (East) - 8.8-km Flowline (22.6 cm ID)

Deposition Onset Location from Topside (m)

12000

10000

8000

6000

38 C, Manifold Temp
4000

49 C, Manifold Temp
60 C, Manifold Temp
2000

0
0

10

15

20

25

Liquid Rate (MBLPD)

Figure 4.6 Deposition Onset Location East 10in PFL

Bonga Main (East) - 8.8-km Flowline (22.6 cm ID)


0.5

38 C, Manifold Temp
49 C, Manifold Temp

Max Deposit Thickness (mm/month)

0.4

60 C, Manifold Temp

0.3

0.2

0.1

0.0
0

10

15

20

25

Liquid Rate (MBLPD)

Figure 4.7 Deposit Growth Rate (in Maximum Thickness) East 10in PFL
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5.1.3

Unrestricted

Deposit Volume and Pigging Frequency


Figure 4.8 illustrates the amount of wax deposit accumulated per month at various
conditions and Figure 4.9 illustrates the pigging frequency (number per year) based
on accumulated volume. As shown, the amount of waxes deposited and, therefore
pigging frequency, are a strong function of manifold temperature and production
rate. Also, deposit volume and pigging frequency increase rapidly when rates are
below 10MBLPD.
At a realistic low rate of 10MBLPD and 120F (49C) manifold temperature, less
than 1bbl (about 0.1m3 or 100 litres) of waxes is deposited per month (ie deposit
growth rate in volume). This corresponds to a pigging frequency of about
three times per year in the 10in East PFLs at 10 MPLBD and 49C at the PM.
Bonga Main (East) - 8.8-km Flowline (22.6 cm ID)
400

38 C, Manifold Temp

350

Wax Deposit Volume (liter/month)

49 C, Manifold Temp
60 C, Manifold Temp

300

250

200

150

100

50

0
0

10

15

20

25

Liquid Rate (MBLPD)

Figure 4.8 Deposit Growth Rate (in Volume) East 10in PFL
Bonga Main (East) - 8.8-km Flowline (22.6 cm ID)
12

38 C, Manifold Temp
10

49 C, Manifold Temp

Pigging Frequency (#/yr)

60 C, Manifold Temp
8

0
0

10

15

20

25

Liquid Rate (MBLPD)

Figure 4.9 Estimated Pigging Frequency East 10in PFL


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5.2

Unrestricted

East 12in Production Flowline Line


A 12in (27cm ID) East PFL with a flowline distance of 3.6 mile (5.8km) was selected
for simulation (representing PFLs 3/4 and 5/6).

5.2.1

Arrival Temperatures at FPSO


Figure 4.10 illustrates the arrival temperature range at various manifold
temperatures and production rates. Range of CWDTs is provided to enhance
comparison. As shown, the East 12in PFLs are in wax deposition range for most
of the conditions simulated (as long as they are below 60C and 20MBLPD). The
arrival conditions are very similar to the East 10in PFL described in Paragraph 4.1.

Bonga Main (East) - 5.8-km Flowline (27 cm ID)


60

FPSO Arrival Temperature (oC)

50

CWDT at 21 bar

40

30

20

38 C, Manifold Temp
10

49 C, Manifold Temp
60 C, Manifold Temp
0
0

10

15

20

25

Liquid Rate (MBLPD)

Figure 4.10 FPSO Arrival Temperatures East 12in PFL


5.2.2

Deposit Onset Location and Deposit Thickness


Figure 4.11 shows the location of wax deposition onset from topside and Figure 4.12
shows the deposit growth rate (in maximum deposit thickness per month) at various
conditions. As shown, onset location is a strong function of manifold temperature
and production rates; whereas, maximum deposit thickness (near riser base in most
of the cases) does not show a large variation with respect to changes in temperature
and rate due to the very low kinetic deposit rates of Bonga fluids. The deposit
growth rate (in maximum deposit thickness) is about 0.01in (0.25mm) per month,
slightly higher than the East 10in PFL case. Again, this is an indication of the
maximum deposit thickness over the entire PFL per month of deposition.
At 140F (60C) manifold temperature, waxes are likely to deposit only in the riser
except for very low rates (such as below 5MBLPD). If manifold temperatures drop
below 100F (38C), wax deposition is predicted in the wellbore regardless of
production rates.

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Bonga Main (East) - 5.8-km Flowline (27 cm ID)


8000

Deposition Onset Location from Topside (m)

7000

6000

5000

4000

3000

38 C, Manifold Temp
49 C, Manifold Temp

2000

60 C, Manifold Temp

1000

0
0

10

15

20

25

Liquid Rate (MBLPD)

Figure 4.11 Deposition Onset Location East 12in PFL

Bonga Main (East) - 5.8-km Flowline (27 cm ID)


0.5

38 C, Manifold Temp
49 C, Manifold Temp

Max Deposit Thickness (mm/month)

0.4

60 C, Manifold Temp

0.3

0.2

0.1

0.0
0

10

15

20

25

Liquid Rate (MBLPD)

Figure 4.12 Deposit Growth Rate (in Maximum Thickness) East 12in PFL

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5.2.3

Unrestricted

Deposit Volume and Pigging Frequency


Figure 4.13 illustrates the amount of wax deposit accumulated per month at various
conditions and Figure 4.14 illustrates the pigging frequency (number per year)
based on accumulated volume. As shown, the amount of waxes deposited and,
therefore pigging frequency, are a strong function of manifold temperature and
production rate. Also, deposit volume and pigging frequency increase rapidly when
rates are below 10MBLPD.

Bonga Main (East) - 5.8-km Flowline (27 cm ID)


400

38 C, Manifold Temp

350

Wax Deposit Volume (liter/month)

49 C, Manifold Temp
60 C, Manifold Temp

300

250

200

150

100

50

0
0

10

15

20

25

Liquid Rate (MBLPD)

Figure 4.13 Deposit Growth Rate (in Volume) East 12in PFL
At a realistic low rate of 10MBLPD and 120F (49C) manifold temperature, about
0.5bbl (85 litres or less than 0.1m3) of waxes is deposited per month (ie deposit
growth rate in volume). This corresponds to a pigging frequency of less than
two times per year in the 12in East PFLs at 10MPLBD and 49C at the PM.

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Bonga Main (East) - 5.8-km Flowline (27 cm ID)


8

38 C, Manifold Temp

49 C, Manifold Temp
60 C, Manifold Temp

Pigging Frequency (#/yr)

0
0

10

15

20

25

Liquid Rate (MBLPD)

Figure 4.14 Estimated Pigging Frequency East 12in PFL

5.3

West 10in Production Flowline Line


A 10in (22.6cm ID) West PFL with a flowline distance of 1.1 mile (1.8km) was
selected for simulation (representing PFLs 8/9 and 11/12).

5.3.1

Arrival Temperatures at FPSO


Figure 4.15 illustrates the arrival temperature range at various manifold
temperatures and production rates. Range of CWDTs is provided to enhance
comparison. As shown, the West 10in PFLs are out of wax deposition range if
manifold temperatures are above 49C (120F) and above 5MBLPD. The arrival
conditions are with higher temperatures as compared to the East PFLs described in
Paragraphs 5.1 and 5.2 due to much shorter length.

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Bonga Main (West) - 1.8-km Flowline (22.6 cm ID)


60

FPSO Arrival Temperature ( C)

50

CWDT at 21 bar

40

30

20

38 C, Manifold Temp
10

49 C, Manifold Temp
60 C, Manifold Temp
0
0

10

15

20

25

Liquid Rate (MBLPD)

Figure 4.15 FPSO Arrival Temperatures West 10in PFL

5.3.2

Deposition Onset Location and Deposit Thickness


Figure 4.16 shows the location of wax deposition onset from topside and Figure 4.17
shows the deposit growth rate (in maximum deposit thickness per month) at various
conditions. As shown, onset location is a strong function of manifold temperature
and production rate; whereas, maximum deposit thickness (near riser base most of
the cases) does not show a large variation with respect to changes in temperature
and rate due to the very low kinetic deposit rates of Bonga fluids. The deposit
growth rate (in maximum deposit thickness) is only about 0.006in (less than
0.15mm) per month, much lower than the East PFL cases.
At 120F (49C) manifold temperature, waxes are likely to deposit only in the riser.
If manifold temperatures drop below 100F (38C), wax deposition is predicted in
the wellbore regardless of production rates.

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Bonga Main (West) - 1.8-km Flowline (22.6 cm ID)


4000

Deposition Onset Location from Topside (m)

3500

3000

2500

2000

1500

38 C, Manifold Temp
49 C, Manifold Temp

1000

60 C, Manifold Temp

500

0
0

10

15

20

25

Liquid Rate (MBLPD)

Figure 4.16 Deposition Onset Location West 10in PFL

Bonga Main (West) - 1.8-km Flowline (22.6 cm ID)


0.20

38 C, Manifold Temp

Max Deposit Thickness (mm/month)

49 C, Manifold Temp
60 C, Manifold Temp

0.15

0.10

0.05

0.00
0

10

15

20

25

Liquid Rate (MBLPD)

Figure 4.17 Deposit Growth Rate (in Maximum Thickness)


West 10in PFL

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5.3.3

Unrestricted

Deposit Volume and Pigging Frequency


Figure 4.18 illustrates the amount of wax deposit accumulated per month at various
conditions and Figure 4.19 illustrates the pigging frequency (number per year)
based on accumulated volume. As shown, the amount of waxes deposited and,
therefore, pigging frequency, are a strong function of manifold temperature and
production rate. Also, deposit volume and pigging frequency increase rapidly when
rates are below 10MBLPD.
At a realistic low rate of 10MBLPD and 120F (49C) manifold temperature, less
than 0.1bbl (0.01m3 or 8 litres) of waxes is deposited per month (ie deposit growth
rate in volume). This corresponds to a pigging frequency of less than once per
year in the 10in West PFLs at 10MPLBD and 49C at the PM. This means,
for all practical purposes that the West PFLs should be pigged once per
year accordingly.

Bonga Main (West) - 1.8-km Flowline (22.6 cm ID)


160

38 C, Manifold Temp

140

Wax Deposit Volume (liter/month)

49 C, Manifold Temp
60 C, Manifold Temp

120

100

80

60

40

20

0
0

10

15

20

25

Liquid Rate (MBLPD)

Figure 4.18 Deposit Growth Rate (in Volume) West 10in PFL

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Bonga Main (West) - 1.8-km Flowline (22.6 cm ID)


5

38 C, Manifold Temp
49 C, Manifold Temp

Pigging Frequency (#/yr)

60 C, Manifold Temp

0
0

10

15

20

25

Liquid Rate (MBLPD)

Figure 4.19 Estimated Pigging Frequency West 10in PFL


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6.0

Unrestricted

POUR POINT AND RESTART EVALUATION


Production of waxy crude oils can be a challenge due to the possible tendency to
gel at low temperatures. As these fluids are cooled, wax starts to precipitate and
particles become suspended in the fluid. As the temperature decrease continues,
the concentration of wax particles increases and can ultimately reach a level at
which an interlocking structural network is formed which changes the crude oil into a
gel with solid-like properties.
A commonly used indicator for the gelling temperature is the pour point. It should be
emphasized however, that the pour point is not a well-defined rheological property.
It is well known that the pour point of a crude oil is strongly dependent on the
thermal history of the sample, causing the minimum-maximum pour point
phenomenon. Depending on the thermal history, the measured pour point can vary
over a temperature range. For some oils this range can be as large as 50C, while
other waxy crudes hardly exhibit any difference.
The pour point is especially sensitive to the pre-conditioning temperature of the oil.
The pre-conditioning temperature determines whether all the wax is entirely
dissolved into the oil or if precipitates are already present in the fluid. If the cooling
process is started with all the wax dissolved, the process will result in a minimum
type pour point, while starting at a lower pre-conditioning temperature will result in
an increase of pour point. Additionally, the pour point of a crude oil is dependent on
the cooling rate. If the rate is sufficiently high, the cooling process can outrun the
wax precipitation kinetics and thus lower the pour point.
As a result, it is therefore important that a pour point test is properly conducted.
The sensitivity of pour point measurements is recognised by the American Society
for Testing and Materials (ASTM) and special test procedures for crude oils have
been developed to address these effects (a description of the different pour point
tests is given in Appendix 4B). Furthermore, it is also important to base design
considerations on the most relevant data. The maximum pour point of an oil can be
above the minimum ambient conditions, while the minimum pour point can be below
the ambient temperature. Generally speaking, for wellstream flows the operating
temperatures are high and the cooling process continuous, a minimum pour point is
the most representative. However, in case of dead oil circulation or, for example, an
offloading line, due to the lower initial temperature and intermittent cooling process
the maximum pour point may be more appropriate.
Finally, it is not only the gelling temperature but also the gel strength and fluid
rheology that determines whether it will be possible to restart a system after shut-in.
In order to include these effects into an operability study, a model pipeline restart
test is necessary.

6.1

Dead Oil Pour Point


As with other wax-related properties, Bonga pour points show large variability
across the field (Ref 11). Reported measurements of pour points from eight Bonga
samples ranged from less than -45C to 15C. The highest of the reliable results
were obtained for Bonga B1 803 samples. The results were measured by SPDC
Warri and indicate an upper pour point of 10C. This is above the ambient seafloor
temperature and was therefore a major driver for this study.

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In order to determine if a possible gelling problem exists, a stored sample of B1 803


oil (SAM ID NIG-O-129A; WTC ID 6140) was located and provided for further study.
After it was validated that the sample had not been altered during storage/transfer,
with use of High Temperature Gas Chromatography (HTGC), a series of pour point
measurements were conducted at Westhollow Technology Center (WTC) and
Oil-phase DBR.
The results of the pour point measurements on the NIG-O-129A sample under stock
tank conditions are shown in Table 4.5. The minimum pour point measurement
conducted at WTC indicates a lower pour point of -7C, which is well below the
ambient seafloor temperature. This value was confirmed by Oilphase DBR, where a
minimum pour point of -8C was measured. The maximum pour points measured by
WTC and Oil-phase DBR (via third-party lab) were found to be 4 and 3C
respectively, in good agreement with each other. These results are just at the
seafloor temperature but are several degrees lower than the upper pour point of
10C measured by the SPDC Warri lab. The observed difference is within the
reproducibility of the measurement as reported by ASTM. This difference in pour
points could potentially lead to wrong conclusions with regard to whether or not a
restart problem should be anticipated due to this the issue was further studied by
conducting a Model Pipeline Test (MPT). The results of this test are discussed in a
later section.
For a comparison of the Bonga 803 results to other Bonga sands, refer to
Appendix 4C Paragraph 2.0.

Laboratory

Protocol

Upper
Pour Point (C)

Lower
Pour Point (C)

SPDC Warri

ASTM D5853-95

10

N/A

Shell WTC

ASTM D5853-95

-7

Oil-phase DBR

ASTM D97 (modified)

N/A

-8

Oil-phase DBR
ASTM D5853-95
(via third-party Lab)

N/A

Oil-phase DBR
ASTM D97
(via third-party Lab)

N/A

Table 4.5 Measured Pour Points for Bonga B1 803 Sample NIG-O-129A

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6.2

Unrestricted

Live Oil Pour Point


Solution gas has an impact on the pour point of a crude oil, therefore Oil-phase DBR
also measured Bonga 803 oil pour point under live conditions.
The method used to measure the live oil pour point was similar to the modified
ASTM D97 used by Oil-phase DBR for the minimum pour point under stock tank
conditions. For the live oil test the oil is introduced into a sapphire cell initially filled
with synthetic gas mixture at test pressure. After the cell is charged, the oil is then
heated to the reservoir temperature under seal (to avoid loss of light ends and
oxidation) for an extended period of time. The composition of the synthetic gas
mixture used for the measurement was based on the expected composition
calculated by HYSYS using a Bonga 803 oil model. The test pressure of the test
was 300psig, which is representative for a blowndown flowline.
The pour point of the Bonga 803 oil under the described test conditions was -6C
+/- 1C (21F +/- 2F). Comparison of the live oil results with the dead oil results
shows that the difference is small and within the uncertainties of the tests. It is
therefore concluded that the effect of solutions gas is small to negligible at the test
conditions.

6.3

Gel Strength Measurement


Although that a pour point is a good indicator whether or not a gelling problem might
exist, it is ultimately the gel strength that will determine if a pipeline can be restarted.
Therefore in addition to the pour point measurements, Oil-phase DBR was also
asked to conduct a gel strength measurement.
The gel strength was measured by simulating a restart situation of Bonga 803 oil
using an MPT. The MPT system consists of a 7mm ID 6m long stainless steel coil
submerged in a temperature-controlled bath. The test is initiated by filling the loop
with oil and circulating it around to remove all entrapped air bubbles. Once this step
is completed, the flow is stopped and the test is started by cooling the oil at a
specified cooling rate. The cooling process is continued until the target temperature
is reached, after which the oil/gel is allowed to age for 12 hours to let the gel
develop its strength.
Once the gel is allowed to age, the restart process is started by pressurising the coil
with nitrogen gas. The nitrogen pressure is increased in steps of 1psi over a 0 to
10psi range, 2psi over a 10 to 30psi range and 5psi thereafter, with 5 minutes
between each pressure step to allow the oil to ungel. The lowest pressure at which
the oil is observed to have started is then deemed as the yield pressure. Finally,
because the yield pressure is dependent on the diameter of the pipe, the yield/gel
strength is calculated by using a force balance:

yield =

p yield D
4L

Where: D = Coil diameter, L = Coil length

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Similar to pour point measurements, MPT pre-conditioning temperature and cooling


rates are important parameters. Generally, the pre-conditioning temperature, cooling
rate and restart temperature are chosen such that they closely represent actual field
conditions. For the present MPT test, however, a different approach was chosen.
The pour point measurements conducted as part of current study showed an upper
pour point for the Bonga 803 sample that was 6C lower than the value previously
measured by SPDC Warri. The seafloor temperature is 6C below the Warri pour
point and therefore we chose a restart temperature 6C below the DBR-measured
pour point of 3C (Trestart = -3C). The ASTM pre-conditioning and cooldown
procedure for pour points was to assure gelling at this temperature. By doing this,
we ensured that a gel would form and that the results would be conservative.
Following the procedure described above, the MPT resulted in a gel yield strength of
3Pa at a restart temperature of -3C for the Bonga 803 oil sample. In order to
determine if this would lead to any problems during a restart, the required restart
pressure was calculated for the Bonga flowlines, refer to Table 4.6. The calculations
show that the required restart pressure for all the flowlines will be significantly lower
than the maximum available pump pressure. The highest required restart pressure
is expected for 10in East PFLs 1 and 2, as can be seen in the tables. However,
even for this PFL the restart pressure is only 19% of the maximum available pump
pressure. Based on these results, it is therefore concluded that no restart problems
will occur.

6.4

Effect of Bonga Fluid Blending


The pour point and restart analysis, as discussed in the previous paragraphs,
focuses on pure Bonga 803 oil. However, the pipeline fluids will consist of a blend of
fluids with a pour point that is a function of the blend. The pour points of the other
Bonga fluids were found to be significantly lower and Bonga 803 oil will only be
present in a relatively small percentage, therefore the blend of 803 with other Bonga
oils is expected to have a lower pour point. This effect is illustrated by Figure 4.6,
which shows the pour point of a blend of 803 with 702 oil.

Section 4 Production Flowline Wax Assessment

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 28 of 41

30-April-2006

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

West 10in PFL

Unrestricted

East 10in PFL 1/2

East 12in PFL 3/4 and 5/6

East 12in PFL 5/6 only

Pipe ID

0.226m

Pipe ID

0.226m

Pipe ID

0.27m

Pipe ID

0.27m

Pipe Length

7000m

Pipe Length

21000m

Pipe Length

15000m

Pipe Length

9800m

Yield
Stress
(Pa)

Restart
Pressure
(bar)

Yield
Stress
(Pa)

Restart
Pressure
(bar)

Yield
Stress
(Pa)

Restart
Pressure
(bar)

Yield
Stress
(Pa)

Restart
Pressure
(bar)

1.24

3.72

2.22

1.45

7.43

4.44

2.90

2.48

3.72

11.15

6.67

4.36

7.43

22.30

13.33

8.71

12

14.87

12

44.60

12

26.67

12

17.42

24

53.33

24

34.84

30

43.56

41.33

60.002

24

29.73

30

37.17

48.43

60.002

16.14

60.00

27.00

Yield stress measured for Bonga 803 oil.

Maximum Pump Pressure.

60.00

Table 4.6 Required Restart Pressures for Bonga Production Flowlines (PFL)

Blend Pour Points of Bonga B1 702 and 803 Oils


10

Upper Pour Point, C

-10

-20

-30

Upper limit; actual value may be lower.

-40
0

20

40
60
803 Oil Fraction, % vol

80

100

Figure 4.20 Pour Points of Bonga B1 702 and B1 803 Blends

Section 4 Production Flowline Wax Assessment

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 29 of 41

30-April-2006

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

6.5

Unrestricted

Impact on Chemical Treatment


The maximum pour points were measured in the 4 to 10C range, however a strong
gel was not formed at these temperatures. Based on our results, we therefore do not
see a need to treat the Bonga oils for pour point depression. However,
we recommend that ongoing surveillance be performed to confirm this with
produced fluids. Currently, vendors are preparing chemical tenders for Bonga.
We will review their recommendations when they are submitted and compare to
our results.

7.0

WAX RISKS AND WAX MANAGEMENT STRATEGY

7.1

Risks and Basic Management Strategy


In the course of this study, questions regarding wax risks have been answered.
The B1 803 oil has been established as a primary (ie non-biodegraded) oil and is
the likely worst-case fluid for wax properties (excluding CWDT, which is slightly
higher for the B2ST3 702 oil).
The B1 803 kinetic wax deposition rate has been measured and used as the basis
for wax deposition calculations for the production system. From these calculations,
a base-case pigging interval is recommended to be three times yearly for the east
PFLs and once yearly for the west PFLs.
Although the B1 803 pour point is found to be at seafloor temperature, the oil only
formed a weak gel. Therefore, based on these fluid properties no restart problems
are anticipated and thus no pour point depressant is required.

7.2

Surveillance and Adjustments to Management Strategy


The key to managing wax risks is production surveillance. The surveillance plan for
Bonga fluids should include the following.
Monitor arrival temperatures and pressures and compare to relevant CWDT curves.
Compare to pigging tables in Appendix 4A and adjust pigging frequency if
necessary.
Monitor pigging returns to determine solid volumes. If volumes are large, more
frequent pigging is recommended.
Monitor pressure drop while pigging. Total pressure drop can be separated
as follows:
Ptotal = Pflow + Ppig + Pwax
The pressure drop from flow resistance (Pflow) should be constant if oil circulation
rate is constant. The pig itself will cause pressure drop (Ppig), but this should also
be constant during the pig run. In addition, the wax removed will cause pressure
drop (Pwax), which will increase proportionally with the amount of wax removed as
the pig traverses the flowline loop. Unfortunately, random pressure fluctuations may
make it impossible to estimate Pwax from the pressure data. However, if Pwax can
be measured and it is greater than 50 to 100psi, pigging frequency should be
increased. If Pwax is less than 50psi, follow recommendations in the pigging table.

Section 4 Production Flowline Wax Assessment

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 30 of 41

30-April-2006

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Unrestricted

Monitor produced fluid properties. It is recommended that the samples be taken on a


per-well basis if possible. If not practical, samples should be taken from individual
flowlines.
Samples should be taken at least every 6 months or more often if significant
production changes occur (eg production from new wells or reservoirs, major
change in production fraction from a given well or reservoir).
Cloud points should be measured and compared to the measured (cold-finger)
values in Table 4.5. If higher-than-expected cloud points are measured and the
system is operating in the deposition regime (arrival T below CWDT), operations
should pig sooner than planned and check pigging returns for excessive volume.
Pour points should be measured. If upper pour point exceeds 10C, pour point
depressant should be injected as soon as possible. If possible, flowline shut-in
should be postponed until chemical injection has begun and at least one line fill of
treated oil has been produced. Treated production oil should be sampled and tested
to confirm pour point has been lowered.

8.0

HEALTH, SAFETY AND ENVIRONMENT (HSE)


Assessment of the potential risks associated with the interpretation, usage,
field-implementation of the technical results of the present study was carried
It was determined that such risks are very low. Additionally, it was determined
the engineering predictions and recommendations of this study do not raise
significant HSE issues or concerns. It is further advised that the users of
technical report conduct their own HSE risk assessment of the usage
implementation of the results and recommendations of the present report.

and
out.
that
any
this
and

Section 4 Production Flowline Wax Assessment

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 31 of 41

30-April-2006

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Unrestricted

Appendix 4A
Sensitivity Analysis of CWDTs and Deposition Rates
Table of Contents
1.0

EAST 10IN PFL DATA AND CWDT SENSITIVITY


720 HOURS SIMULATION ......................................................................................33

2.0

EAST 12IN PFL DATA AND CWDT SENSITIVITY


720 HOURS SIMULATION ......................................................................................34

3.0

WEST 10IN PFL DATA AND CWDT SENSITIVITY


720 HOURS SIMULATION ......................................................................................35

4.0

EAST 10IN PFL DEPOSITION RATE SENSITIVITY


720 HOURS SIMULATION ......................................................................................36

Section 4 Appendix 4A Sensitivity Analysis of CWDTs and Deposition Rates

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 32 of 41

30-April-2006

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

1.0

Unrestricted

EAST 10IN PFL DATA AND CWDT SENSITIVITY


720 HOURS SIMULATION
Basis: 803 B1 Deposition Rates
803 B2ST3 CWDT's
702 Fluid Composition

Basis: 803 B1 Deposition Rates


803 B1 CWDT's
702 Fluid Composition
o

FPSO Arrival Temperature ( C)


803 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

17.8
23.7
27.6

23.8
32
37.3

29.9
40.4
47.1

Deposit Onset from Topside (m)


803 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

10862
10862
10862

5913
1603
302

1788
0
0

Max Deposit Thickness (mm)


803 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

0.11938
0.07443
0.04493

0.13100
0.05161
0.01264

0.09006
0
0

Wax Deposit Volume (liter)


803 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

38

49

60

324.1
204.7
125.6

197.7
35.4
2.9

69.7
0
0

Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

17.8
23.7
27.6

23.8
32
37.3

29.9
40.4
47.1

Deposit Onset from Topside (m)


803 B1
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

10862
10862
10862

6847
2838
535

2359
99
0

Max Deposit Thickness (mm)


803 B1
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

0.11938
0.07443
0.04493

0.13230
0.08216
0.01927

0.14219
0.02038
0

803 B1
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

FPSO Arrival Temperature ( C)

38

49

60

35
55
90

57
317
3913

161
---

803 B1
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Manifold Temperature ( C)

Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

38

49

60

17.8
23.7
27.6

23.8
32
37.3

29.9
40.4
47.1

Deposit Onset from Topside (m)


702 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

38

49

60

10.4
6.6
4.0

6.3
1.1
0.1

2.2
0
0

803 B1
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5.0
10.0
20.0

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

10862
10862
10862

7575
4439
1009

3123
240
0

Max Deposit Thickness (mm)


702 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

0.11938
0.07443
0.04493

0.13324
0.08270
0.02513

0.14308
0.02451
0

Wax Deposit Volume (liter)


o

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

324.1
204.7
125.6

230.2
68.6
5.6

98.1
1.6
0

702 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

324.1
204.7
125.6

255.5
101.6
13.0

125.2
4.7
0

Pigging Interval (days)


o

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

35
55
90

49
164
2004

115
7013
10000

702 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Pigging Frequency (#/yr)


o

Manifold Temperature ( C)

702 B2ST3

Pigging Interval (days)


o

Manifold Temperature ( C)

Pigging Frequency (#/yr)


803 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

FPSO Arrival Temperature ( C)


803 B1

Wax Deposit Volume (liter)


o

Manifold Temperature ( C)

Pigging Interval (days)


803 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Basis: 803 B1 Deposition Rates


702 B2ST3 CWDT's
702 Fluid Composition

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

35
55
90

44
111
866

90
2391
10000

Pigging Frequency (#/yr)


o

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

10.4
6.6
4.0

7.4
2.2
0.2

3.1
0.1
0

702 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5.0
10.0
20.0

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

10.4
6.6
4.0

8.2
3.3
0.4

4.0
0.2
0

Section 4 Appendix 4A Sensitivity Analysis of CWDTs and Deposition Rates

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 33 of 41

30-April-2006

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

2.0

Unrestricted

EAST 12IN PFL DATA AND CWDT SENSITIVITY


720 HOURS SIMULATION

Basis: 803 B1 Deposition Rates


803 B2ST3 CWDT's
702 Fluid Composition

Basis: 803 B1 Deposition Rates


803 B1 CWDT's
702 Fluid Composition
o

FPSO Arrival Temperature ( C)


803 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

19.7
25.0
28.6

26.2
33.6
38.4

32.8
42.3
48.1

Deposit Onset from Topside (m)


803 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

7500
7500
7500

4218
895
117

923
0
0

Max Deposit Thickness (mm)


803 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

0.24193
0.14635
0.08732

0.19401
0.06506
0.01799

0.10587
0
0

Wax Deposit Volume (liter)


803 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

38

49

60

388.2
242.4
148.2

199.8
27.1
2.4

46.8
0
0

Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

19.7
25.0
28.6

26.2
33.6
38.4

32.8
42.3
48.1

Deposit Onset from Topside (m)


803 B1
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

7500
7500
7500

5023
1339
364

1218
0
0

Max Deposit Thickness (mm)


803 B1
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

0.24193
0.14635
0.08732

0.19555
0.07666
0.01972

0.12728
0
0

803 B1
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

FPSO Arrival Temperature ( C)

38

49

60

50
79
130

96
711
8124

412
---

803 B1
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Manifold Temperature ( C)

Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

38

49

60

19.7
25.0
28.6

26.2
33.6
38.4

32.8
42.3
48.1

Deposit Onset from Topside (m)

38

49

60

7.3
4.5
2.8

3.7
0.5
0.0

0.9
0
0

803 B1
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5.0
10.0
20.0

702 B2ST3

Manifold Temperature ( C)

Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

38

49

60

7500
7500
7500

5665
2833
590

1466
64
0

Max Deposit Thickness (mm)


702 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

0.24193
0.14635
0.08732

0.19681
0.11957
0.02921

0.13724
0.03111
0

Wax Deposit Volume (liter)


o

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

388.2
242.4
148.2

250.3
53.1
6.3

75.2
0
0

702 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

388.2
242.4
148.2

285.3
85.3
11.6

105.6
1.6
0

Pigging Interval (days)


o

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

50
79
130

77
363
3049

256
10000
--

Pigging Frequency (#/yr)


o

Manifold Temperature ( C)

702 B2ST3

Pigging Interval (days)


o

Manifold Temperature ( C)

Pigging Frequency (#/yr)


803 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

FPSO Arrival Temperature ( C)


803 B1

Wax Deposit Volume (liter)


o

Manifold Temperature ( C)

Pigging Interval (days)


803 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Basis: 803 B1 Deposition Rates


702 B2ST3 CWDT's
702 Fluid Composition

702 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

50
79
130

68
226
1667

182
11830
--

Pigging Frequency (#/yr)


o

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

7.3
4.5
2.8

4.7
1.0
0.1

1.4
0
0

702 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5.0
10.0
20.0

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

7.3
4.5
2.8

5.3
1.6
0.2

2.0
0
0

Section 4 Appendix 4A Sensitivity Analysis of CWDTs and Deposition Rates

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 34 of 41

30-April-2006

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

3.0

Unrestricted

WEST 10IN PFL DATA AND CWDT SENSITIVITY


720 HOURS SIMULATION

Basis: 803 B1 Deposition Rates


803 B2ST3 CWDT's
702 Fluid Composition

Basis: 803 B1 Deposition Rates


803 B1 CWDT's
702 Fluid Composition
o

FPSO Arrival Temperature ( C)


803 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

26.3
29.2
30.8

35.2
39.2
41.5

44
49.2
52.1

Deposit Onset from Topside (m)


803 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

3552
3552
3552

535
64
0

0
0
0

Max Deposit Thickness (mm)


803 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

38

49

60

0.13503
0.07903
0.04627

0.05478
0.01859
0

0
0
0

38

49

60

126.04
76.50
45.60

15.08
0.95
0

0
0
0

Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

26.3
29.2
30.8

35.2
39.2
41.5

44
49.2
52.1

Deposit Onset from Topside (m)


803 B1
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

3552
3552
3552

811
240
0

0
0
0

803 B1
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

803 B1
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

FPSO Arrival Temperature ( C)

38

49

60

89
147
247

746
11856
10000

----

803 B1
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Manifold Temperature ( C)

Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

38

49

60

26.3
29.2
30.8

35.2
39.2
41.5

44
49.2
52.1

Deposit Onset from Topside (m)

38

49

60

4.0
2.4
1.5

0.5
0.0
0

0
0
0

803 B1
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5.0
10.0
20.0

702 B2ST3

Manifold Temperature ( C)

Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

38

49

60

3552
3552
3552

1035
480
116

0
0
0

Max Deposit Thickness (mm)

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

0.13503
0.07903
0.04627

0.07290
0.02337
0

0
0
0

702 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

0.13503
0.07903
0.04627

0.08300
0.03408
0

0
0
0

Wax Deposit Volume (liter)


o

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

126.04
76.50
45.60

25.33
4.45
0

0
0
0

702 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

126.04
76.50
45.60

37.42
8.26
2

0
0
0

Pigging Interval (days)


o

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

89
147
247

444
2528
10000

----

702 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Pigging Frequency (#/yr)


o

Manifold Temperature ( C)

702 B2ST3

Pigging Interval (days)


o

Manifold Temperature ( C)

Pigging Frequency (#/yr)


803 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

803 B1

Wax Deposit Volume (liter)


o

Manifold Temperature ( C)

Pigging Interval (days)


803 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

FPSO Arrival Temperature ( C)

Max Deposit Thickness (mm)

Manifold Temperature ( C)

Wax Deposit Volume (liter)


803 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Basis: 803 B1 Deposition Rates


702 B2ST3 CWDT's
702 Fluid Composition

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

89
147
247

301
1362
6981

10000
10000
10000

Pigging Frequency (#/yr)


o

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

4.0
2.4
1.5

0.8
0.1
0

0
0
0

702 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5.0
10.0
20.0

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

4.0
2.4
1.5

1.2
0.3
0.1

0
0
0

Section 4 Appendix 4A Sensitivity Analysis of CWDTs and Deposition Rates

OPRM-2003-0302D

Page 35 of 41

30-April-2006

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

4.0

Unrestricted

EAST 10IN PFL DEPOSITION RATE SENSITIVITY


720 HOURS SIMULATION

Basis: 702 B2ST3 CWDT's


Dep Rates: 803 B2ST3
Fluid Composition: 702

Basis: 702 B2ST3 CWDT's


Dep Rates: 803 B1
Fluid Composition: 702
o

FPSO Arrival Temperature ( C)


803 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

17.8
23.7
27.6

23.8
32
37.3

29.9
40.4
47.1

Deposit Onset from Topside (m)


803 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

10862
10862
10862

5913
1603
302

1788
0
0

Max Deposit Thickness (mm)


803 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

0.00616
0.00197
0.00057

0.00846
0
0

0.01062
0
0

FPSO Arrival Temperature ( C)


803 B1
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

803 B1
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

803 B1
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

60

17.8
23.7
27.6

23.8
32
37.3

29.9
40.4
47.1

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

10862
10862
10862

7575
4439
1009

3123
240
0

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

0.11938
0.07443
0.04493

0.13324
0.08270
0.02513

0.14308
0.02451
0

Wax Deposit Volume (liter)


o

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

10.7
3.4
1.0

10.6
0
0

7.5
0
0

803 B1
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

324.1
204.7
125.6

255.5
101.6
13.0

125.2
4.7
0

Pigging Interval (days)


o

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

1054
3353
11590

1062
---

1504
---

803 B1
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Pigging Frequency (#/yr)


803 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

49

Max Deposit Thickness (mm)

Pigging Interval (days)


803 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

38

Deposit Onset from Topside (m)

Wax Deposit Volume (liter)


803 B2ST3
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5
10
20

Manifold Temperature ( C)

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

35
55
90

44
111
866

90
2391
--

Pigging Frequency (#/yr)


o

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

0.3
0.1
0

0.3
0
0

0.2
0
0

803 B1
Liquid Rate
(MBLPD)
5.0
10.0
20.0

Manifold Temperature ( C)
38

49

60

10.4
6.6
4.0

8.2
3.3
0.4

4.0
0.2
0

Section 4 Appendix 4A Sensitivity Analysis of CWDTs and Deposition Rates

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Appendix 4B
Pour Point Measurement Techniques and Uncertainties
There are currently at least five ASTM pour point protocols, most of which are designed for
petroleum products rather than crude oils. The two most widely used are ASTM D97-96a and
D5853-95. As implemented by Shell, these tests require 100 to 250ml of fluid. ASTM D97
is an older petroleum-products pour point protocol that requires heating to a prescribed
temperature (60C) and cooling in a series of baths until the oil gels or solidifies. Shell has
devised a mini D97 pour point that uses 30ml of sample. The mini pour point has been
calibrated to the ASTM D97 method. The repeatability (95% confidence limits, same lab)
of D97 pour points (measured on fuel oils) is reported by ASTM to be 5F; the reproducibility
(95% confidence limits, different labs) is 12F. In addition, chemical vendors use variations of
ASTM D-97 to screen chemicals and choose concentrations. They may use very small
volumes (1 to 2ml per sample), and results have higher uncertainty than other protocols.
For that reason, validation after pre-screening is always recommended, using much closer
adherence to standard protocols.
ASTM D5853 is designed specifically for crude oils and recognises the potentially strong
effect of thermal history on the oil gelling temperature. Two separate heating and cooling
protocols are employed in order to see the effects of two substantially different thermal
histories. The minimum pour point protocol requires heating to 105C and cooling in air for
20 minutes at room temperature before entering a series of cooling baths. This protocol
lowers the measured pour point in two ways:

It ensures that all wax is in solution before cooling is started

It cools relatively quickly, potentially outrunning the wax kinetics and reaching a lower
temperature before the gel forms

The maximum pour point protocol requires heating to 60C or less, cooling in air for
24 hours, a short reheat to 45C followed by the cooling baths. This protocol raises the
measured point by allowing a long time for seed crystals to form at room temperature, which
in turn decreases the time for gel formation. ASTM D5853 is difficult to adapt to small
volumes; therefore, we have devised no mini technique for ASTM D5853. The repeatability
of D5853 using crude oils is reported by ASTM to be 6 to 12F, but the reproducibility is as
high as 32 to 40F(!). Clearly, minor variations between labs could have large consequences.
ASTM D5853 addresses the problems specific to the pour points of crude oils, therefore it is
regarded as the better test method.

Section 4 Appendix 4B Pour Point Measurement Techniques and Uncertainties

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Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

Confidential

Appendix 4C
Tables from Westrich (1999) Report (SIEP.99.6096)
Table of Contents
1.0

FLUID PROPERTY DATA FOR BONGA OILS WAX MEASUREMENTS


FOR STOCK-TANK (DEAD) CONDITIONS................................................................39

2.0

FLUID PROPERTY DATA FOR BONGA OILS: SELECTED GEOCHEMISTRY


AND PVT PARAMETERS ..........................................................................................40

3.0

BEST ESTIMATES OF KEY WAX-RELATED PROPERTIES FOR BONGA OILS


UNDER STOCK-TANK (DEAD) CONDITIONS .........................................................41

Section 4 Appendix 4C Tables from Westrich (1999) Report (SIEP.99.6096)

OPRM-2003-0302D

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Confidential

FLUID PROPERTY DATA FOR BONGA OILS1 WAX MEASUREMENTS FOR STOCK-TANK (DEAD) CONDITIONS

1.0

Wax Content
Pay Sand

Well

Lab
2

Lab
3

670

B-1

1.6

1.0

690

B-3ST

1.5

702

B-1

2.7

702

B-2ST3

2.3

702

B-3ST

710

B-1

7.3

803

B-1

9.3

803

B-2ST3

4.7

709*

702W6*

1.8-2.3

Lab
4

Pour Point Data (C)

Lab
2

Lab
3

-33

-39

1.1

-51

3.9-4.2

-39

-42

Lab
4

Lab
5

-36

<-36

8.4-9.0

4.8

12-15

Lab
6b

Lab
3

(-41)

(-12, -15)

-30
1.0

Lab
6a

Cloud Point (C)


Lab
4

Lab
5

Lab
6c

-3

(-2)

15

(11)

22

Lab
6d

Lab
6e

Lab
6f

24

18

32

31

24
<-36

-45

<-45

(-25)

23

(18)

12, 15

-33

12, (55)

21
<-36

<-45

(-11)

7-10*

24

(22)
(10)

20
29-33*

38, (29)
20

32

31

38*

34-35*

(1)

It is important to note that different labs were dealing with specific stock-tank oil samples that they were handled and transferred differently. Issues relating to sample representativeness and data quality have
downgraded the reliability of some measured values (these are enclosed in parentheses). Uncertainty in this regard for some of the samples is unknown. Other data were downgraded because either the
analytical methods were considered less reliable or there were reported problems with the measurements (enclosed in parentheses and italics). Laboratories that were used to measure wax-related fluid
properties at Bonga, referred to as Lab 2 to Lab 6 in the table, are listed below.

(2)

Geochemical Applications/Consulting Team (SEPTAR, Rijswijk) Pour point by standard ASTM (D97); wax content by UOP46.

(3)

Core Lab (Aberdeen) Methods not specified in report tables; cloud point referred to inwax appearance temperature in (WAT).

(4)

Oil Test Data from PVT reports; methods not specified in report tables.

(5)

Shell Research and Technology Center, Amsterdam (SRTCA) Pour point by both min and max-ASTM methods (identical results by both techniques); cloud point by AMS 259. SRTCA reported difficulties in
making cloud point measurements, and the data reported above also may be unreliable due to the poorer quality dead oil samples that were made available.

(6)

Multiphase and Flow Assurance Team (SEPTAR, Houston):


(a)

Pour point by min ASTM method considered more reliable.

(b)

Pour point by automatic pour point analyser (APA) has large errorbars, considered less reliable.

(c)

Cloud point Houston standard cold-finger method.

(d)

Cloud point by Cross-polar Microscopy (CPM); data measured by DB Robinson (Calgary).

(e)

Predicted cloud point based on concentrations of C31-C60 normal paraffins determined by HTGC.

(f)

Predicted cloud point based on thermodynamic wax model, using HTGC-derived normal paraffin data as input.

* Inserted for comparison into Westrichs (Ref 25) table from reference (Ref 17).

Section 4 Appendix 4C Tables from Westrich (1999) Report (SIEP.99.6096)

OPRM-2003-0302D

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Depth Top
(ss ft)

API

Total Acid
Number
(TAN)

Stage of
Biodeg
(from HRGC)

API

GoR
(scf/bbl)

Degree of
Undersat
(psi)

Reservoir
Temp
(C)

670

B-1

OMC-7010

6756

21.2

1.42

W5 Mod

21

325

750

40

671

B-2

OMC-8270

W5 Mod

690

B-3ST

OMC-8074

9290

29.1

0.76

W4 Mild

30

550

1204

70

702

B-1

OMC-7011

8040

27.9

0.76

W3/W4 Mild

28

660

445

56

702

B-2ST3

OMC-8441

8925

29.3

0.74

W3 Mild

29

500

63

702

B-3ST

9342

29

71

710

B-1

OMC-7012

9182

32.6

0.39

W1 Onset

33

1090

472

71

803

B-1

OMC-7013

9920

34.9

0.35

W0 None

35

1420

302

80

803

B-2ST3

OMC-8442

10,900

30.2

0.76

W2/W3 Light

30

780

578

93

Stage of biodegradation is based on the criteria in Utech et al 1999, which relates the characteristics of whole oil/gas chromatograms to the
extent of biodegradation. The High Resolution Gas Chromatography (HRGC) data for the Bonga crudes, on which this interpretation is based,
can be found in Buiskool Toxopeus and van der Veen (1999).

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

2.0

Well

PVT Data
(SIDS, Bonga Team)

FLUID PROPERTY DATA FOR BONGA OILS: SELECTED


GEOCHEMISTRY AND PVT PARAMETERS

Page 40 of 41

Section 4 Appendix 4C Tables from Westrich (1999) Report (SIEP.99.6096)

OPRM-2003-0302D

Pay
Sand

Gelchemistry
(RTS)

Sample ID
No
(OMC #
RTS)

Confidential

30-April-2006

Well

670

B-1

671

B-2

690

B-3ST

< -35

702

B-1

702

Pour Point
(C)

Std Cloud Point


(C)

Stage of Biodegradation
(from HRGC)

Pour Point
(C)

Std Cloud Point


(C)

W5 Mod

< -35

10 to 15

W5 Mod

< -35

10 to 15

-3 to 15

W4 Mild

-33

10 to 15

< -35

24

W3/W4 Mild

-18

18

B-2ST3

< -35

22 to 23

W3 Mild

-18

18

702

B-3ST

< -35

710

B-1

6 to 10

W1 Onset

12

24

803

B-1

9 to 15

21 to 24

W0 None

12

24

803

B-2ST3

< -35

20

W2/W3 Light

-10

21

709*

702W6*

7 to 10*

29 to 33*

W1 Onset*

12*

21*

< -35

740

Stage of biodegradation is based on the criteria in Utech et al 1999, which relates the characteristics of whole oil/gas chromatograms to the
extent of biodegradation. The HRGC data for the Bonga crudes, on which this interpretation is based, can be found in Buiskool Toxopeus and
van der Veen 1999.
* Inserted for comparison into Westrichs (Ref 25) table from reference (Ref 17).

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

3.0

Pay Sand

Predicted Values Based on Biodegradation Model of Utech et al, 1999

Confidential

30-April-2006

BEST ESTIMATES OF KEY WAX-RELATED PROPERTIES FOR BONGA


OILS UNDER STOCK-TANK (DEAD) CONDITIONS

Page 41 of 41

Section 4 Appendix 4C Tables from Westrich (1999) Report (SIEP.99.6096)

OPRM-2003-0302D

Based on Measured Data

Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

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Section 5
Offloading Riser (Wax Assesement)

Table of Contents
1.0

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY...............................................................................................3

2.0

BACKGROUND............................................................................................................3

3.0

OIL OFFLOADING RISER LAYOUT AND CHARACTERISTICS .................................4

4.0

WAX DEPOSITION SIMULATION RESULTS ..............................................................6

5.0

4.1

Simulation Basis ................................................................................................6

4.2

Wax Deposition and Growth Rate ......................................................................6

4.3

Pigging...............................................................................................................9

4.4

5-year Wax Deposition Profile..........................................................................11

4.5

Effect of Riser Buoy Insulation on Wax Deposition...........................................13

HEALTH, SAFETY AND ENVIRONMENT (HSE) .......................................................15

TABLES
Table 5.1 BOOR Data Basis.............................................................................................5
Table 5.2 Wax Properties Basis ..........................................................................................6
FIGURES
Figure 5.1 BOOR Layout .....................................................................................................4
Figure 5.2 Ambient Temperatures as a Function of Water Depth ........................................5
Figure 5.3 SPM Arrival Temperature ...................................................................................7
Figure 5.4 Deposit Growth Rate Maximum Thickness ......................................................8
Figure 5.5 Effect of Offloading Rate and Inlet Temperature on Deposition Profile ...............8
Figure 5.6 Deposit Growth Rate Cumulative Deposit Volume...........................................9
Figure 5.7 Estimated Pigging Frequency ...........................................................................10
Figure 5.8 Estimated Pigging Interval ................................................................................11
Figure 5.9 5-year Wax Deposition Profile ..........................................................................12
Figure 5.10 Total Deposit Volume Over a 5-year Period 32C Inlet and 600MBPD ........12
Figure 5.11 Effect of Buoy Insulation on Fluid Temperature Profile 600MBPD ..............13

Section 5 Offloading Riser Wax Assessment

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Table of Contents (contd)


FIGURES
Figure 5.12 Effect of Buoy Insulation on Wax Deposition Profile
600MBPD, 49C Inlet .....................................................................................14
Figure 5.13 Effect of Buoy Insulation on Wax Deposit Volume ..........................................14
Figure 5.14 Effect of Buoy Insulation on Pigging Interval...................................................15

APPENDICES
Appendix 5A Raw Data 720-hour Simulation ...........................................................................16

Section 5 Offloading Riser Wax Assessment

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1.0

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EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
The wax deposition risk and pigging requirement of the Bonga Oil Offloading Riser
(BOOR) was re-evaluated using updated wax-related fluid properties.
The key findings are:
Wax deposition/risk in BOOR is less severe than previously predicted using
updated wax-related fluid properties and models
Pigging is recommended at least once per year upon startup. Pigging operation
can be optimised by checking deposits in the pig return and monitoring arrival
temperatures
Inlet temperature has a strong effect on deposit thickness, deposit volume and
pigging frequency
Effect of insulation (assumed C-float) from the buoyancy elements near the
mid-point of the riser on deposition profile is observed but not significant enough
to alter the pigging recommendation.
If the BOOR is not pigged:

Maximum wax deposit thickness is predicted to be 1mm (after 1 year)


and 3mm (after 5 years) at 32C (90F) inlet temperature and 600MBPD
offloading rate

Cumulative deposit volume is predicted to be 20bbl (after 1 year) and 60bbl


(after 5 years) at 32C (90F) inlet temperature and 600MBPD offloading rate

We recommend pigs used in pigging BOOR be customised by pig manufacturers.


Care should also be taken to design procedures for proper solid handling due to wax
precipitates in the FPSO hull when offload and deposits from pig return.

2.0

BACKGROUND
A wax deposition study of the BOOR was carried out in September 2000 (Ref 18).
Since then, production functions have been updated with new fluid property
information and Shell deposition models have been improved. A Bonga wax
analysis (Ref 19) was performed to reassess the wax-related fluid properties and
wax deposition risks in the Bonga production flowlines to the FPSO. As a follow-up
of the Bonga production flowline study, wax deposition and pigging requirements
were re-evaluated for the BOOR from the FPSO to the Single Point Mooring (SPM)
offloading buoy (which connected to oil tanker) using updated wax properties
and models.

Section 5 Offloading Riser Wax Assessment

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OIL OFFLOADING RISER LAYOUT AND CHARACTERISTICS


The schematic of the BOOR layout is shown in Figure 5.1. There are two offloading
risers with an OD of 22in. The two risers are of different overall length to allow for
vertical separation between them. Syntactic foam buoyancy elements are arranged
over certain length of each riser near the mid-point to provide the wave shape.
The risers are suspended at each end (FPSO and SPM). The deeper riser with an
overall length of approximately 2.3km (1.4 mile) was used for worst-case study due
to its colder temperature profile. The riser characteristics are provided in Table 5.1
(Ref 20). An intermittent offload cycle was used oils from the FPSO were offloaded
for 20 hours every 5 days at a flow rate of 600MBPD (ie a total of 1mmbbl oil
transferred per offload from both risers).
The ambient sea temperatures around the risers vary from 7 to 26.5C (45 to 80F).
Figure 5.2 shows the ocean temperature profile used for the Bonga Field.

Bonga 22in Oil Offloading Riser Shapes Initial


1000
900
800

Elevation (m)

700
600
500
400
300
200
100
0
0

200

400

600

800

1000

1200

1400

1600

1800

2000

Horizontal Distance (m)


OPRM20030302D_062.ai

Figure 5.1 BOOR Layout

Section 5 Offloading Riser Wax Assessment

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Pinlet

Riser Length
(m)

Riser ID
(in)

Riser
Thickness
(in)

Fusion-bond
Epoxy
Coating (in)

Uod Factor
(W/m2-C)

34.5

2265

20

0.02

150

Tin (C)

No of Riser

Buoy
Section (m)

Offload
(hr/5 days)

Oil Volume per


Offload
(MMbbl)

Offload
Rate
(MBPD/line)

32-66

450

20

600

Table 5.1 BOOR Data Basis

Figure 5.2 Ambient Temperatures as a Function of Water Depth

Section 5 Offloading Riser Wax Assessment

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Unrestricted

WAX DEPOSITION SIMULATION RESULTS


We used the HYSYS steady-state simulator (version 2.4.2, build 3874) to simulate
wax deposition in the offloading riser. A Shell proprietary wax model (SD-HYPRExtensions WAX-2.3-GS) and a multiphase hydraulic routine (GZM-NEWPRS)
were also used. Processed and stabilised stock oil fluid composition was used to
represent the offloaded oils (predominantly 702 sand since it is the primary pay sand).
Tabulated raw data are listed in Appendix 5A.

4.1

Simulation Basis
The basis of simulation is listed below:
Three offloading riser inlet temperatures ie 32C (90F), 49C (120F) and 66C
(150F), were used to illustrate the effect of inlet temperature on wax deposition.
According to previous design (Ref 23) oil is to be cooled to 43C (110F) via
crude cooler prior to entering the FPSO hull and the offloading temperature is
about 38 to 43C (100 to 110F)
Two oil offload flow rates, ie 600MBPD (1mmbbl oil/offload) and 900MBPD
(1.5mmbbl/offload), were used to illustrate the effect of flow rate on wax
deposition
Simulations were performed on a basis of 20-hour offload operation every five
days (eg 6 offloads over 30-day period)
No water cut (ie 0%) is assumed in the oils offloaded and the Gas/Oil Ratio
(GOR) is negligible (ie processed and stabilised oil)
The same wax-related fluid properties used in the Bonga production flowline wax
study were used, ie Critical Wax Deposition Temperatures (CWDTs) of B2ST3
702 sand and kinetic deposition rates of B1 803 sand listed in Table 5.2 (Ref 19)
The CWDT is approximately 43C (109F) at 10 to 20bar range (< 300psi)

Wax Properties

CWDTs

Kinetic Disposition Rates

Sand

702 B2ST3

803 131

Table 5.2 Wax Properties Basis

4.2

Wax Deposition and Growth Rate


Figure 5.3 illustrates the effect of inlet temperature on arrival conditions at SPM
(oil tanker loading point) over the range of flow rates studied. It is clear that there will
be wax deposition in the risers over most of the conditions studied and in the FPSO
hull. Cares should be taken to properly handle wax precipitates/solids as suggested
in previous study (Ref 18). However, no wax deposition occurs when inlet
temperatures are above 52 to 55C range (126 to 130F) depending on flow rates
since the SPM arrival temperatures will be higher than the CWDTs. No information
about the heating capacity of the FPSO is available to us.

Section 5 Offloading Riser Wax Assessment

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Figure 5.4 illustrates the maximum deposit growth rate. The maximum rate is
estimated to be < 0.1mm/month (< 0.004in/month).
Note: This is the maximum thickness change possible in the entire riser system.
The deposit thickness is not uniformly distributed due to variations in the
temperature profile. A higher rate of 900MBPD will result in thinner deposits owing
to smaller oil-wall T caused by higher heat-transfer coefficients.
Figure 5.5 illustrates the BOOR deposition profile after a 30-day period (six offloads)
at two flow rates and two inlet temperatures. At 49C (120F) inlet temperature,
higher flow rates move the wax onset location further downstream and most of
deposits are located near the SPM. However, 32C (90F) inlet temperature is
below CWDT. Therefore, wax deposition begins at the riser inlet regardless of
flowrate, and deposits are more uniformly distributed.
Figure 5.6 illustrates the cumulative deposit volume over a 30-day period.
The effect of inlet temperature and flow rates can be clearly seen. At 32C (90F)
inlet temperature and 600MBPD, almost 1.6bbl/month of waxes are deposited.

Figure 5.3 SPM Arrival Temperature

Section 5 Offloading Riser Wax Assessment

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Figure 5.4 Deposit Growth Rate Maximum Thickness

Figure 5.5 Effect of Offloading Rate and Inlet Temperature on Deposition Profile

Section 5 Offloading Riser Wax Assessment

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Figure 5.6 Deposit Growth Rate Cumulative Deposit Volume

4.3

Pigging
Figure 5.7 illustrates the pigging frequency (yearly) required to clean the offloading
riser. We use a pigging criterion based on the pressure drop that would be caused if
the pigged wax forms a plug in front of the pig, specifically OPPiu9 < 50psi (3.4bar).
As shown in Figure 5.7, the pigging frequencies are small (ie intervals are long)
and are relatively insensitive to variation in the conditions studied (where wax is
deposited).
Note: A pigging frequency less than once per year should be regarded as once for
all practical purposes. On the other hand, the associated pigging interval at
32C (90F) inlet temperature and 600MBPD is in the magnitude of 600 days
as shown in Figure 5.8. We recommend the offloading risers be pigged at
least once per year upon start-up. The amount of deposits collected in the pig
return can then be examined to help optimise pigging operations after
startup, along with arrival temperature monitoring.
In addition, an inlet temperature of 16C (60F) was studied as a sensitivity check
(included in Appendix 5A). At this temperature, very large amounts of waxes would
have already precipitated/deposited prior to entering offloading risers.

Section 5 Offloading Riser Wax Assessment

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Offloading risers are flexible lines. Based on Shell internal documents (Refs 21
and 22) flexible lines can be pigged as normal carbon steel pipelines, provided that
the radius of the bends in the flexibles is controlled (to avoid sharp bends, in the
BOOR case, controlled via buoyancy elements). However, care should be taken on
the selection of materials for the pigs to avoid aggressive pigging behaviour that
may cause carbon steel pick-up if a stainless steel carcass is applied in the flexible.
This is because the oval flow path of the flexibles resulting from the slight change of
internal ID as the carcass structure opens and closes when bending occurs.
Also, pig brushes should be avoided if a plastic liner (typically acts as primary
corrosion barrier) is applied to maintain pipe integrity. The SPM should allow flow
path control elements for pig to pass through and come back via another riser to
the FPSO. The loading hose in the last section between the SPM and the tanker
should not be pigged. This is because the soft linings of the hoses are likely to
be damaged if pigged and tankers are not usually capable of receiving a pig.
We would recommend pigs used in pigging BOOR be customised by pig
manufacturers.

Figure 5.7 Estimated Pigging Frequency

Section 5 Offloading Riser Wax Assessment

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BOOR 2.3km Flowline (20" ID)

Figure 5.8 Estimated Pigging Interval

4.4

5-year Wax Deposition Profile


In the absence of pigging, we simulated wax deposition over a 5-year period using
600MBPD flow rate. An inlet temperature of 32C (90F) was used to compare with
previous study in 2000 (Ref 18). The results are shown in Figure 5.9. The maximum
deposit thickness in the riser grows from almost 1mm (0.04in) at the end of the first
year offloading operation to 3mm (0.12in) at the end of the fifth year. The total
cumulative deposit volume in the riser is predicted to be 20bbl in the first year and
60bbl at the end of the 5-year period, as shown in Figure 5.10.
As a result, the 5-year deposition profile and total deposit volume are predicted to be
less than the results from previous studies.
Note: The previous work is based on a different simulation basis eg wax-related
fluid properties, simulation environment and simulator package.

Section 5 Offloading Riser Wax Assessment

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Figure 5.9 5-year Wax Deposition Profile

Figure 5.10 Total Deposit Volume Over a 5-year Period


32C Inlet and 600MBPD

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4.5

Unrestricted

Effect of Riser Buoy Insulation on Wax Deposition


The possible insulation of the 450m buoy section near the mid point of the offloading
riser was taken into account to evaluate its impact on wax deposition. Commercial
C-Float syntactic foam buoyancy elements rated up to about 1200m (4000ft) water
depth was assumed. The thermal properties of the C-Float foam used in this study
are: thermal conductivity of 0.112W/mC (0.065 Btu/hr-ftF), density of 737kg/m3
(46lb/ft3) and specific heat capacity of 1674.7J/kgC (0.4 Btu/IbF). This results in
very small temperature decline over the continuous 450m buoyancy section (refer to
Figure 5.11).
The effect of this buoy insulation on wax deposition profile can be seen in
Figure 5.12 (deposit thickness profile) using 600MBPD and 49C (120F).
No deposition is seen in the buoyancy section due to the excellent insulating
properties assumed. Translated this result to wax deposition volume and pigging,
both the cumulative deposit volume and the pigging interval are reduced only slightly
(shown in Figures 5.13 and 5.14 respectively). Therefore, the recommendation
of once per year pigging frequency is not altered, taking into account of buoy
insulation effect.

Figure 5.11 Effect of Buoy Insulation on


Fluid Temperature Profile 600MBPD

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Figure 5.12 Effect of Buoy Insulation on


Wax Deposition Profile 600MBPD, 49C Inlet

Figure 5.13 Effect of Buoy Insulation on Wax Deposit Volume

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BOOR - 2.3-km Flowline (20" ID)

Figure 5.14 Effect of Buoy Insulation on Pigging Interval

5.0

HEALTH, SAFETY AND ENVIRONMENT (HSE)


We have carried out the assessment of the potential risks associated with the
interpretation, usage and field implementation of the technical results of the present
study. It was determined that such risks are very low. Additionally, it was determined
that the engineering predictions and recommendations of this study do not raise any
significant HSE issues or concerns. It is further advised that the users of this
technical report conduct their own HSE risk assessment of the usage and
implementation of the results and recommendations of the present report.

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Appendix 5A
Raw Data 720-hour Simulation
Oil Tanker Arrival Temperature (C)
Oil Rate (MBLPD)

BOOR Inlet
Temperature (C)

600

900

16

14.4

15.3

32

26.2

28.6

49

38.4

42.1

66

50.9

55.8

Max Deposit Thickness (mm)


Oil Rate (MBLPD)

BOOR Inlet
Temperature (C)

600

900

16

0.03744

0.02802

32

0.08012

0.05956

49

0.09653

0.05815

66

Wax Deposit Volume (bbl)


Oil Rate (MBLPD)

BOOR Inlet
Temperature (C)

600

900

16

0.6

0.5

32

1.5

1.2

49

1.1

0.3

66

Pigging Interval (days)


Oil Rate (MBLPD)

BOOR Inlet
Temperature (C)

600

900

600

900

600

1363

1759

1363

524

689

524

727

2752

727

Pigging Frequency (Number per Year)


Oil Rate (MBLPD)

BOOR Inlet
Temperature (C)

600

900

16

0.3

0.2

32

0.7

0.5

49

0.5

0.1

66

Section 5 Appendix 5A Raw Data 720-hour Simulation

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Section 6
Pour Point Depressant Risk Assessment

Table of Contents
1.0

RISK DOCUMENT TO VALIDATE NOT INJECTING POUR POINT


DEPRESSANT FOR INITIAL BONGA WELLS ............................................................2

2.0

RECOMMENDATIONS .................................................................................................2

3.0

RESULTS AND DISCUSSION......................................................................................2

4.0

RISK ANALYSIS ..........................................................................................................5

5.0

4.1

Probability of Forming a Gel...............................................................................5

4.2

Probability of Removing a Gel............................................................................5

4.3

OPEX Related to Pour Point Depressant (PPD) ................................................5

4.4

Other Considerations .........................................................................................6

CONCLUSIONS............................................................................................................6

TABLES
Table 6.1 Measured Pour Points for Bonga B1 803 Sample NIG-O-129A ...........................3
Table 6.2 Required Restart Pressures for Bonga Production Flowlines (PFL) .....................4
FIGURES
Figure 6.1 Pour Points of Bonga B1 702 and B1 803 Blends...............................................4

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RISK DOCUMENT TO VALIDATE NOT INJECTING POUR POINT


DEPRESSANT FOR INITIAL BONGA WELLS
Pour point is viewed as a risk for Bonga 803 and 710 sands. Based on analysis
done so far, the Bonga 803 and 710 fluids can have pour points that range from
3C to 10C. Production of pour point fluids can be a challenge due to the possible
tendency of the oil to form a gel when the flowline has cooled down to a
temperature, which is below the measured pour point. Scenarios under which this
can happen for Bonga include the following:

A planned shutdown (under low water-cut scenario) wherein the flowline is


protected against hydrates by treating it with methanol and yet the flowline could
cool below the pour point

A situation under which the flowline is not circulated with dead oil after it has
been blown down

During a shutdown, the fluid could gel-up and might potentially result in restart
problems since gels typically have non-zero yield strength (ie some pressure is needed
to dislodge a gel). This document summarises the analysis performed to assess
pour point risk for Bonga. The Flow Assurance Sub-team (FAST) reviewed this work
on 14 April 2003.

2.0

RECOMMENDATIONS
Based on the analysis done thus far:

3.0

It is recommended not to inject a pour point depressant for the initial Bonga
803 and 710 wells. However, it may be prudent to wait for testing results from
the vendors before making a final decision

It is also recommended to analyse samples obtained during the initial well


unload to rig and to perform active surveillance during the initial months of
production to verify pour point properties. This includes sampling of the
appropriate sampling of the fluid (according to given procedures) and
verification of fluid properties by a properly qualified laboratory

RESULTS AND DISCUSSION


As with other wax-related properties, Bonga pour points show large variability
across the field (Ref 24). Reported measurements of pour points from eight
Bonga samples ranged from less than -45C to 15C. The highest of the reliable
results were obtained for Bonga B1 803 samples. The results were measured by
SPDC Warri and indicate an upper pour point of 10C. This is above the ambient
seafloor temperature and was therefore a major driver for this study. The B1 803
sample was identified as among the worst fluids from a wax perspective due to its
primary nature (ie no waxes lost) and hence was determined to be adequate for wax
flow assurance experimental measurements and modelling.
Table 6.1 shows the results on the pour point measurement obtained from various
labs on the B1-803 fluid. It was also determined that the presence of a small amount
of gas in the samples (pour point measurement done with live fluid at 300psig) made
the pour point to be slightly lower but did not substantially alter the pour point.

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Laboratory

Unrestricted

Protocol

Upper
Pour Point (C)

Lower
Pour Point (C)

SPDC Warri

ASTM D5853-95

10

N/A

Shell WTC

ASTM D5853-95

-7

Oil-phase DBR

ASTM D97
(modified)

N/A

-8

Oil-phase DBR
(via third-party Lab)

ASTM D5853-95

N/A

Oil-phase DBR
(via third-party Lab)

ASTM D97

N/A

Table 6.1 Measured Pour Points for Bonga B1 803 Sample NIG-O-129A
Pour points are typically characterised by a maximum pour point and a minimum
pour point. It is entirely likely (as suggested by the above Bonga data) that the
maximum pour points can be above ambient conditions and minimum pour points
can be below ambient conditions. Ref 24 indicates that a minimum pour point is
more likely for production systems due to the presence of higher temperatures and
turbulence while a maximum pour point is more likely during dead-oiling and oil
offloading. The above data indicates that the minimum pour point for Bonga B1 803
is about -7/-8C while the maximum pour point ranges from 3C to 10C.
Although a pour point is a good indicator whether or not a gelling problem might
exist, it is ultimately the gel strength that will determine if a pipeline can be restarted.
Therefore, in addition to the pour point measurements, a gel strength measurement
was also conducted.
The gel strength measurement was done at DBR. The pour point measurements
conducted as part of DBR study showed an upper pour point for the Bonga 803
sample that was 7C lower than the value previously measured by SPDC Warri
(3C measured at DBR vs 10C measured at Warri). The seafloor temperature is
6C below the Warri pour point (10C to 4C = 6C), therefore we chose a restart
temperature 6C below the DBR-measured pour point of 3C (Trestart = -3C). By
doing this, we ensured that a gel would form and that the results would be
conservative. More details can be found in Ref 24. The measured gel strength was
found to be 3N/m2. In order to determine if this would lead to any problems during a
restart, the required restart pressure was calculated for the Bonga flowlines, refer to
Table 6.2. The calculations show that the required restart pressure for all the
flowlines will be significantly lower than the maximum available pump pressure. The
calculations in Table 6.2 are also made with the conservative assumption that the
entire flowline loop is filled with dead oil that has gelled.
All the initial high pour point wells flow into the west flowlines which are the shortest
flowlines. Table 6.2 indicates that a maximum gel strength of 48N/m2 can be
restarted with the topsides pump pressure in the West flowline loops. Also, if you
assume that only leg of the flowline loop (ie one flowline instead of two) is filled with
the gelled fluid then maximum gel strength of up to 98N/m2 can be restarted.

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West 10in PFL

Unrestricted

East 10in PFL 1/2

East 12in PFL 3/4 and 5/6

East 12in PFL 5/6 only

Pipe ID

0.226m

Pipe ID

0.226m

Pipe ID

0.27m

Pipe ID

0.27m

Pipe Length

7000m

Pipe Length

21000m

Pipe Length

15000m

Pipe Length

9800m

Yield
Stress
(Pa)

Restart
Pressure
(bar)

Yield
Stress
(Pa)

Restart
Pressure
(bar)

Yield
Stress
(Pa)

Restart
Pressure
(bar)

Yield
Stress
(Pa)

Restart
Pressure
(bar)

1.24

3.72

2.22

1.45

7.43

4.44

2.90

2.48

3.72

11.15

6.67

4.36

7.43

22.30

13.33

8.71

12

14.87

12

44.60

12

26.67

12

17.42

24

53.33

24

34.84

30

43.56

41.33

60.002

24

29.73

30

37.17

48.43

60.002

16.14

60.00

27.00

Yield stress measured for Bonga 803 oil.

Maximum Pump Pressure.

60.00

Table 6.2 Required Restart Pressures for Bonga Production Flowlines (PFL)
Lastly, all the above discussion focuses on the pour point properties of the B1-803
Bonga fluid which is one of the worst fluids in Bonga in terms of wax properties.
Mixing of this fluid with other benign fluids (eg 690 fluids or 720 fluids) will cause the
pour point to reduce further. The amount of reduction that can be achieved is shown
in Figure 6.1. As seen in Figure 6.2, a 70/30 mixture of 803 and 703 fluid reduces
the maximum pour point to less than 0C.

Blend Pour Points of Bonga B1 702 and 803 Oils


10

Upper Pour Point, C

-10

-20

-30

Upper limit; actual value may be lower.

-40
0

20

40
60
803 Oil Fraction, % vol

80

100

Figure 6.1 Pour Points of Bonga B1 702 and B1 803 Blends


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4.0

Unrestricted

RISK ANALYSIS
The following factors were considered while trying to make a decision to inject pour
point depressant:

4.1

The probability of forming a gel in the first place (prevention)

The probability of removing the gel (remediation)

Operating Expenditure (OPEX) related to the pour point depressant

Other consideration (pour point system plugging up the methanol system and
vendor analysis)

Probability of Forming a Gel


This is directly related to the pour point. B1 803 has a pour point that ranges
anywhere from 3C to 10C. In spite of having a pour point above ambient
conditions the probability of forming a gel ranges from low to medium. This is
because of the following reasons:

4.2

The above pour points are maximum pour points while production fluids tend to
exhibit minimum pour points which are less than ambient for B1 803 (Ref 24).

Current procedures call for dead-oiling the flowline after a blowdown. This
ensures that benign fluids replace high-risk pour point fluids in the flowline
during a long shutdown

It is possible to have a planned shutdown wherein the flowline is treated with


methanol (and never blown down). In such a case, the flowline can cool down to
below the pour point and form a gel. However, in this case the pour point would
be slightly lower than that measured due to presence of more gas

Even a small amount of mixing with other benign oils can reduce the pour point
quite substantially (refer to Figure 6.1). It is possible to ensure that high pour
point oils are mixed with benign oils during production (except for PFL 08 and
PFL 09, where all the production is from 710 fluids)

Probability of Removing a Gel


This is related to the gel yield strength of the gel. It was not possible to form a gel for
the B1 803 Bonga fluids at ambient conditions. Formation of a gel at -3C indicated
a weak gel structure corresponding to a gel strength of 3N/m2. The main drawback
of these gel strength calculations is that they have not been correlated to field data.
Calculations have indicated that a pressure of only 4bar is needed to break this gel
structure even if the entire west flowline loop is filled with the B1-803 fluid.
Calculations have shown that a gel strength of up to 96N/m2 can be dislodged with
topsides pressure of 56bar even if an entire flowline is filled up with dead oil.
Moreover, even if the topsides pump cannot dislodge the gel, there always exists
the possibility of renting a low-rate high-pressure pump to dislodge the gel. Taken
altogether, the probability of removing the gel (in case it forms) is high.

4.3

OPEX Related to Pour Point Depressant (PPD)


Current OPEX projections for PPD range from 1 to 2MM$ a year. This is a
substantial amount of OPEX that can be saved by not injecting the PPD.

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Other Considerations
The Bonga production trees are designed such that the methanol and chemical
injection have a common port. In spite of the presence of the insert to avoid mixing
of the PPD and the methanol (which are incompatible chemicals) there still exists
some risk of mixing and forming a plug, thereby jeopardising the methanol system.
The probability of this occurrence ranges from low to medium. However, the impact
of this is quite high considering that we could lose the methanol injection system to
the tree.
Preliminary testing results from the chemical vendors also indicate that they are
unable to form a stable gel and thereby select an appropriate chemical. Hence,
it may be prudent to defer injection of the chemical (if needed) until more
representative production samples have been obtained either during well unloading
or during actual production surveillance.
All the above arguments are in favour of NOT INJECTING a PPD. However,
the impact resulting from this event is quite high in the sense that we could
potentially lose a flow line. Hence we need to carefully involve all the relevant
parties while making this decision.

5.0

CONCLUSIONS
Based on the analysis done thus far, the following conclusions are reached:

The risks of a flowline plugging due to pour point problems ranges are low.
This is based on the analysis done on one the worst fluids (from a geochemical
perspective) at Bonga the B1-803 fluid

The risks can be lowered further by putting operating procedures in place to


mitigate the risk (dead-oil displacement after blowdown)

Active surveillance must be done during the initial months of production


to verify pour point properties. This includes sampling of the appropriate
sampling of the fluid (according to given procedures) and verification of
fluid properties by a qualified laboratory

It is also recommended to collect samples and measure pour points on


the 803 and 710 wells while the wells are being unloaded to the rig

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Section 7
Scale Review.

Table of Contents
1.0

INTRODUCTION............................................................................................................. 3

2.0

SUMMARY OF CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS..................................... 3


2.1

Bonga Formation Water Composition ................................................................. 5

2.2

Bonga Produced Gas Composition ..................................................................... 6

2.3

ScaleChem Predictions and Analysis.................................................................. 8

TABLES
Table 7.1 Matrix of Pressure, Temperature Used for Scale Analysis
(Obtained from Bonga Subsea Systems Engineering Team).............................. 7
Table 7.2 Critical Parameters for Severity of Uninhibited Scale
(From SIEP Scaling Manuals) ........................................................................... 11
FIGURES
Figure 7.1 Scale Tendency as a Function of Temperature and
Pressure for BaSO4 (0.1)................................................................................... 12
Figure 7.2 mg/L as a Function of Temperature and Pressure for
BaSO4 (0.1)....................................................................................................... 12
Figure 7.3 Scale Tendency as a Function of Temperature and
Pressure for BaSO4 (1)...................................................................................... 13
Figure 7.4 mg/L as a Function of Temperature and Pressure for
BaSO4 (1).......................................................................................................... 13
Figure 7.5 Scale Tendency as a Function of Temperature and
Pressure for BaSO4 (10) ................................................................................... 14
Figure 7.6 mg/L as a Function of Temperature and Pressure for
BaSO4 (10)........................................................................................................ 14
Figure 7.7 Scale Tendency as a Function of Temperature and
Pressure for BaSO4 (100) ................................................................................. 15
Figure 7.8 mg/L as a Function of Temperature and Pressure for
BaSO4 (100) ...................................................................................................... 15
Figure 7.9 Scale Tendency as a Function of Temperature and
Pressure for CaCO3 (0.1).................................................................................. 16

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Table of Contents (contd)


FIGURES
Figure 7.10 mg/L as a Function of Temperature and Pressure
for CaCO3 (0.1) ................................................................................................ 16
Figure 7.11 Scale Tendency as a Function of Temperature and
Pressure for CaCO3 (1) ................................................................................... 17
Figure 7.12 mg/L as a Function of Temperature and Pressure
for CaCO3 (1) .................................................................................................. 17
Figure 7.13 Scale Tendency as a Function of Temperature and
Pressure for CaCO3 (10) ................................................................................. 18
Figure 7.14 mg/L as a Function of Temperature and Pressure
for CaCO3 (10) ................................................................................................ 18
Figure 7.15 Scale Tendency as a Function of Temperature and
Pressure for CaCO3 (100) ............................................................................... 19
Figure 7.16 mg/L as a Function of Temperature and Pressure
for CaCO3 (100)............................................................................................... 19
Figure 7.17 Scale Tendency as a Function of Temperature and
Pressure for CaCO3 (10) ................................................................................. 22
Figure 7.18 mg/L as a Function of Temperature and Pressure
for CaCO3 (10) ................................................................................................ 22
Figure 7.19 Scale Tendency as a Function of Temperature and
Pressure for CaCO3 (10) ................................................................................. 23
Figure 7.20 mg/L as a Function of Temperature and Pressure
for CaCO3 (10) ................................................................................................ 23
Figure 7.21 Scale Tendency as a Function of Temperature and
Pressure for CaCO3 (10) ................................................................................. 24
Figure 7.22 mg/L as a Function of Temperature and Pressure
for CaCO3 (10)................................................................................................. 24

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1.0

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INTRODUCTION.
Previous Bonga scale studies done by Frigo1 (June 1997), Morgenthaler et al2
(June 2000) and Lorimer et al3 (December 2000) have been reviewed. Our work
was done primarily to evaluate scaling potential under operating conditions not
considered in the previous studies (especially low pressure operating points) and to
assess the current inhibition strategies in place for scale control at Bonga.
The immediate focus was to address whether a subsea scale inhibitor is needed for
Bonga during the first few years of operation.
In the absence of data files used by Morgenthaler, the scaling calculations
(self-scaling and mixing water) have been reworked using the latest information on
production profiles and thermal hydraulic modelling obtained from the Bonga
Subsea Systems Engineering Team. Exact reproduction of Morgenthalers results
was not seen and this may be due to different strategies/philosophies used in the
scale modelling work (eg brine reconciliation, ratios of brine and gas used etc) using
SCALECHEM v2.2 simulation software. However, the trends of results and the
major conclusions are similar to those of Morgenthaler et al.
We have based our calculations on the brine and gas compositions as shown in
Tables 7.1 and 7.2, which are similar to those used in the study performed
by Morgenthaler et al2 (June 2000). Table 7.3 shows the various pressure
temperature conditions evaluated in our study. The brine and gas flow rates were
obtained via simulations (unavailable to past studies) from Bonga Subsea Systems
Engineering Team (Susan Lindsey).

2.0

SUMMARY OF CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS


We would like to reiterate the recommendation of Frigo1 and Morgenthaler et al2 that
we need more water samples from the Bonga region. The robustness of the water
sample used in our analysis (and also that used by Morgenthaler) has been
critiqued and evaluated by Morgenthaler et al in detail. The water analysis is indeed
in question and needs to be verified via analysis on a fresh water sample from a
Shell-certified laboratory. Whenever feasible, water samples should be obtained
during developmental drilling in the region. The FEAST5 (Fluids Evaluation and
Stability Testing) networks best practices should be applied to all sampling and
subsequent analysis to ensure that the data we get are representative and under
strict Shell Group guidelines. Efforts should be made to acquire or share data with
other operators in the region or participate in studies aimed at understanding
regional formation water chemistry. Our work is based on the water chemistry
identified in the Bonga Development Basis of Design Document (Rev 5).
The composition in Table 7.1 forms the design basis and hence has been used in
our study.
Basis our calculations and analysis, for the range of flow ratios of brine to gas and
operating conditions that will exist at various stages of operation, the only two
scaling minerals that could form scale would be barium sulphate and calcium
carbonate.
1

Frigo, D: Scale review draft report sent via email to Bonga Project Team (1997).

Morgenthaler, L, Bell, F: Water Compositions and Scaling Predictions for the Bonga Field: Sensitivity to Carbon
Dioxide, Organic Acid, and Barium Concentrations (June 2000).

Lorimer, S, Wallace, C, Gibson, G: Review of Bonga Corrosion, Souring and Scaling (Rev 1) (Dec 2000).

Contact at Vladimir.Liahkhovitch@shell.com for FEAST sampling protocols and analysis.

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Basis information obtained through Bonga Subsea Systems Engineering Team


(Susan Lindsey), the gas to water ratio (kscf per day of gas produced per bbl of
water) over field life in Bonga would range from 0.1 to 100.
Barium sulphate self-scale formation (from formation water) is likely for low
temperatures (~40F) at all pressures considered (150 to 5000psia) (scaling
tendency >8). However, the amount of scale (mg/L) that would form in all these
cases is minimal (~1 to 2mg/L) and below limits of those required for causing
plugging/deposition problems4. The likelihood of barium sulphate scale to occur in
the field is therefore minimal. No subsea treatment for barite scale is therefore
recommended. This confirms the findings of Morgenthaler2. Surveillance and
monitoring of produced water is strongly recommended, especially to verify the
analysis of Bonga formation brine used in this study with respect to barium scale.
Scale analysis should be redone when the new production water sample is analysed
to scrutinise scaling risks and operating strategies.
Calcite self-scale formation (from formations water) is likely at pressures lower than
1000psia (scaling tendency ~5, amount of scale ~300mg/L)) and at temperatures
greater than 145F. From the scaling manual4, the scaling risk is higher around
175F and at pressures close to ~350psia, where scaling tendency ~10 and amount
of scale ~600mg/L. The severity of calcite scaling causing production problems in
these conditions will be low to moderate4. Subsea scale treatment is advised if
Bongas operating conditions fall under these operating conditions (and produced
water is formation water only). Topsides scale treatment is however advised,
as separator pressures will be around 150psia where the scaling tendency
increases to a value of ~ >10 and amount of scale is ~500mg/L. These conclusions
are similar to those of Morgenthaler et al2. The impact of scaling calculations
on specific Bonga conditions (anticipated thermal hydraulic conditions at various
nodes and produced water compositions) during field life is explained in detail in
Section 8. Surveillance and monitoring of produced water is strongly recommended.
Scale analysis should be redone when the new production water sample is analysed
to scrutinise scaling risks and operating strategies.
Scaling risk for scenarios with production water having 25, 50 and 75% seawater
content have been calculated. For these scenarios, calcite scaling is likely at
conditions of high temperature (175F) and low pressure (150psia). As these
scenarios are not likely subsea, hence subsea-scaling risk is minimal for these
ratios. Also, self-scaling risk from seawater production alone is negligible at all
conditions tested.

Frigo, D: Scaling Manuals. SIEP 99-5679 and SIEP 99-5780.

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Bonga Formation Water Composition


We have used the design basis formation water chemistry similar to the one used by
Morgenthaler et al 2. Morgenthaler et al 2 have performed extensive simulations to
analyse sensitivity of formation water to variables like carbon dioxide, organic acids
and barium concentrations. The reconciliation of the brine to balance for
electro-neutrality may be done by changing either the calcium or bicarbonate
composition in the brine. However, we expect lesser errors during the analysis of
calcium. Hence we chose to reconcile using the bicarbonate composition wherein
the higher alkalinity (bicarbonate 2800mg/L) is attributed to unmeasured organic
acids content (acetate as shown in Paragraph 2.1.2). Morgenthaler et al2 report a
similar approach. This would need to be verified with analysis of new water samples
from Bonga. The analysis of the new water sample should be carried out by a Shell
lab (or a Shell-certified lab) using standard Shell certified protocols5. Paragraph 2.1.1
gives the original composition of water composition used by us as well as
Morgenthaler et al2.

2.1.1

Original Brine Composition Before Reconciliation


(Same as Reported by Morgenthaler et al2)

Sodium (mg/L)

10440

Potassium (mg/L)

5140

Calcium (mg/L)

280

Magnesium (mg/L)

14

Barium (mg/L)

0.81

Strontium (mg/L)

2.1

Iron (mg/L)

15

Chloride (mg/L)

19305

Sulphate (mg/L)

500

Bicarbonate (mg/L)

2830

pH at 77F

8.22

Morgenthaler, L, Bell, F: Water Compositions and Scaling Predictions for the Bonga Field: Sensitivity to Carbon
Dioxide, Organic Acid, and Barium Concentrations (June 2000).

Contact at Vladimir.Liahkhovitch@shell.com for FEAST sampling protocols and analysis.

Section 7 Scale Review

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Shell Nigeria E & P Company Ltd.

2.1.2

Unrestricted

Input Base Case Brine Composition After Reconciliation


(Modified Water Composition)
Paragraph 2.1.2 gives the composition used in our study after reconciliation
(saturation at reservoir conditions for calcite and barite).

Sodium (mg/L)

10592

Potassium (mg/L)

5140

Calcium (mg/L)

280

Magnesium (mg/L)

14

Barium (mg/L)

0.81

Strontium (mg/L)

2.1

Iron (mg/L)

15

Chloride (mg/L)

19000

Sulphate (mg/L)

500

Bicarbonate (mg/L)

2000

Acetate (mg/L)

1700

pH at 77F

7.76

Note: The water composition before and after reconciliation is almost the same
except for the bicarbonate content. This water is super saturated in calcite
when taken to reservoir conditions and has been used for scaling analysis to
give conservative estimates.

2.2

Bonga Produced Gas Composition


Paragraph 2.2.1 shows the composition of gas used in our analysis. We have used
the same composition of Bonga produced gas as that used by Morgenthaler et al2.
The moisture content (0.16%) was calculated at reservoir conditions (145F, 4500psia)
and then added to the gas stream composition.

2.2.1

Input Base Case Gas Composition (used by Morgenthaler et al (2000)

CO2 (mole %)

2.5

H2O (mole %)

0.16

Hydrocarbon gas (mole %)

97.34

Morgenthaler, L, Bell, F: Water Compositions and Scaling Predictions for the Bonga Field: Sensitivity to Carbon
Dioxide, Organic Acid, and Barium Concentrations (June 2000).

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CO2 content used herein (refer to Paragraph 2.2.1) is higher than that in the Bonga
Basis of Design. This would provide conservative results and was chosen to match
its value used in previous studies2. Table 7.1 shows the matrix of conditions used for
analysis. They cover expected range of temperature (40 to 175F) and pressures
(150 to 5000psia) conditions at Bonga.
7

T (F)

P (psia)

175

5000
4500
3000
1000
350
150

145

5000
4500
3000
1000
350
150

100

5000
4500
3000
1000
350
150

40

5000
4500
3000
1000
350
150

Table 7.1 Matrix of Pressure, Temperature Used for Scale Analysis


(Obtained from Bonga Subsea Systems Engineering Team)
2

Morgenthaler, L, Bell, F: Water Compositions and Scaling Predictions for the Bonga Field: Sensitivity to Carbon
Dioxide, Organic Acid, and Barium Concentrations (June 2000).

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Unrestricted

The main difference between this test matrix and the one used by Morgenthaler
et al (2000) is the inclusion of the new separator (topsides) pressure conditions of
350 and 150psia. From the production data obtained from Bonga Subsea Systems
Engineering Team, the various ratios of gas to brine that will exist in the various
Bonga flowlines at various stages of the project life are: 0.1, 1, 10, 100kscf of gas
per bbl of brine.

2.3

ScaleChem Predictions and Analysis


ScaleChem has been used to evaluate scaling tendencies using the input data
discussed earlier. Severity of the scaling and extent of problems anticipated are
based on the scaling manual and instructions therein by Frigo3 (1997).
The following cases have been run to evaluate scaling potential and associated
risks.

2.3.1

Case #

Seawater

Formation Water

A (self-scaling)

100

25

75

50

50

75

25

E (seawater only)

100

Case A: Self-scaling Calculations (Produced Water is Formation-water Only)


The methodology used in ScaleChem for performing self-scaling calculations is
as follows:

Reconcile the formation brine attributing the excess alkalinity to unmeasured


acetate (salt of organic acid). This brine is then taken to reservoir conditions and
used for scaling analysis)

This reservoir brine is then used with the gas phase in the scaling scenario
option to calculate scaling tendency and amount of scale for the range of
process conditions (refer to Table 7.1) and for the various gas-to-brine ratios

The gas composition used for simulations is in Paragraph 2.2.1

Basis our calculations and analysis, for the range of flow ratios of brine to gas that
will exist at various stages of operation, the only two scaling minerals that could form
scale would be barium sulphate and calcium carbonate

Lorimer, S, Wallace, C, Gibson, G: Review of Bonga Corrosion, Souring and Scaling (Rev 1) (Dec 2000).

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BaSO4 Scale
Figures 7.1, 7.3, 7.5 and 7.7 show the scaling tendencies for barite scale as
predicted by SCALECHEM for the four ratios 0.1, 1, 10 and 100 respectively.
Figures 7.2, 7.4, 7.6 and 7.8 give the corresponding amounts of baryte scale (mg/L)
for the four ratios. The trends in these graphs are very similar and consistent trends
are also observed at the higher ratios (1000, 2000kscf gas per bbl of water). BaSO4
solubility is moderately affected by pressure, however it is strongly influenced by
temperature. BaSO4 solubility increases sharply as a function of temperature.
Therefore, scaling tendency increases as temperature drops, the highest value
being at the lowest temperature (40F).
For a ratio of 0.1kscf gas per bbl of brine, Figure 7.1 shows the anticipated scaling
tendency for the various conditions tested. The produced fluids will become
saturated with baryte as temperature drops with saturation levels increasing as the
fluids move to topsides. Production problems have been observed only when the
degree of baryte super saturation becomes ~ 5 to 8, ie scaling tendency is ~ 5 to 83
(refer to Table 7.2). This threshold is reached when temperature reaches around
40F. Hence, BaSO4 scale formation is very likely at conditions of lower temperature
(~40F). However, from Figure 7.2 the amount of scale (1 to 2mg/L) that precipitates
out of solution is not significant to cause plugging or deposition problems (~ 50mg/L)
based on guidelines provided in the SIEP Scaling Manual3. Increasing the ratio of
gas to brine, ie 1, 10, 100, has no significant effect on either the scaling tendencies
or the amount of scale as shown in Figures 7.3 to 7.8. Even though scaling
tendencies are greater than threshold limits at lower pressures and temperatures,
the amount of scale is not significant to cause plugging or deposition problems.
Conclusions for Baryte Scale in Case A
The baryte-scaling tendency reaches values above threshold for scale formation at
lower temperatures (40F). The amount of scale formed (mg/L) is not high enough to
cause any concern regarding production problems (plugging/deposition). As such,
the analysis shows a low risk of scale formation based on field experience.
Based on data used and analysis done herein, no subsea baryte scale treatment is
recommended. However, it is strongly recommended to obtain a good quality
produced water sample and to perform scale analysis using the new data due to
concerns with water analysis (eg Ca, Ba content) used for the simulations.
We strongly recommend that topsides surveillance and monitoring strategies be put
in place to assist operations in the management of possible scaling issues.
CaCO3 Scale
Figures 7.9, 7.11, 7.13 and 7.15 show the scaling tendencies for calcite scale as
predicted by SCALECHEM for the ratios 0.1, 1, 10, 100 (kscf of gas per bbl of brine)
respectively. Figures 7.10, 7.12, 7.14 and 7.16 give the corresponding amounts of
calcite scale (mg/L) for these four ratios.
For ratio of 0.1kscf of gas per bbl of brine, Figures 7.9 and 7.10 give scaling
tendency and amount of scale that could potentially form. As suggested in the SIEP
Scaling Manual3 (refer to Table 7.5), for calcite scaling to cause production
problems, the threshold limit for scaling tendency is about 4 and corresponding
amount is about 300mg/L. This threshold is reached in the system with operating
conditions of temperatures greater than 145F and pressures less than 1000psia.
3

Lorimer, S, Wallace, C, Gibson, G: Review of Bonga Corrosion, Souring and Scaling (Rev 1), Dec 2000.

Section 7 Scale Review

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Under these conditions, low scale formation problems could appear. However, scale
severity is increased at pressure around 350psia and temperature around 175F.
For higher ratios (ie 1, 10 and 100), Figures 7.11 to 7.16 show that the trend of
results (scaling tendency and amount of scale formation). Based on our analysis, at
these ratios, moderate problems could appear in the system with operating
conditions having temperature around 175F and pressure around 350psia.
Conclusions for Calcite Scale in Case A
Calcite self-scale formation is likely at pressures lower than 1000psia (scaling
tendency ~5, amount of scale ~ 300mg/L)) and at temperatures greater than 145F.
From the scaling manual4, the scaling risk is higher around 175F and at pressures
close to ~350psia, where scaling tendency ~10 and amount of scale ~600mg/L.
The severity of calcite scaling causing production problems in these conditions will
be low to moderate4. At Bongas operating conditions, in the event of significant
production of formation water only, subsea scale treatment is recommended.
Topsides scale treatment is however advised for all scenarios.
The impact of these scaling calculations on specific Bonga conditions (at anticipated
thermal hydraulic conditions and at various nodes and under different produced
water compositions) is explained in detail in Section 8.
It is strongly recommended to obtain a good-quality produced water sample and
to perform scale analysis using this data due to concerns with water analysis
(eg Ca, Ba content) used for the simulations. Surveillance and monitoring of
produced water is strongly recommended, as there are concerns about water
analysis (eg very low barium content). This is especially crucial since the major
assumption of our work and recommendations is the basis claim of reservoir
engineers that produced water will be primarily seawater. Scale analysis should be
redone when the new production water sample is analysed to scrutinise operating
guidelines and strategies. We strongly recommend that topsides and subsea
surveillance and monitoring strategies be put in place to assist operations in scale
management.
Note: Figures 7.1 to 7.16 indicate the scaling tendency and amount of scale
possible at a specific water to gas ratio. The number in the brackets in the
title for each figure, eg 0.1, indicates the specific ratio ie kscf of gas per barrel
of water produced.

Frigo, D: Scaling Manuals. SIEP 99-5679 and SIEP 99-5780.

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Scale
Mineral
Calcium
Carbonate

Unrestricted

Expected
Scenario

Range

Scale unlikely

1 to 4

Scale possible

Scale very likely

Comments

(mg/litre)
Minor component of
co-deposited scale
possible

10

Few problems

< 300

Moderate

Limit may be lower


for co-deposited
CaCO3

300 to 700

Severe
Barium Sulphate

Range

> 700

Scale possible

1 to 5

Scale possible

5 to 8

Scale likely

>0

NORM deposition
possible
Productivity
problems begin

>8

Minor problems
Moderate

< 50

Productivity
problems begin

50 to 400

Severe

> 400

Table 7.2 Critical Parameters for Severity of Uninhibited Scale


(From SIEP Scaling Manuals)

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16.0

14.0

12.0
5000
10.0

4500
3000

Scale Tendency

1000

8.0

350
150

6.0
150

4.0

350
1000

2.0

3000

Pressure (Psi)

4500

0.0
175

5000

145

100

40

Temperature (F)

Figure 7.1 Scale Tendency as a Function of


Temperature and Pressure for BaSO4 (0.1)

1.4

1.2

1.0

5000
4500
3000

0.8

1000

mg/L

350
150

0.6

0.4

150
350
1000

0.2

3000

Pressure (Psi)

4500

0.0
175

145
Temprature (F)

5000
100

40

Figure 7.2 mg/L as a Function of


Temperature and Pressure for BaSO4 (0.1)

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16.0

14.0

12.0
5000

10.0
Scale Tendency

4500
3000
1000
350

8.0

150

6.0
150

4.0

350
1000

2.0

3000

Pressure (Psi)

4500

0.0
175

5000

145

100

40

Temperature (F)

Figure 7.3 Scale Tendency as a Function of


Temperature and Pressure for BaSO4 (1)

1.4

1.2

1.0
5000
4500
0.8

3000
1000

mg/L

350
0.6

150

0.4

150
350
1000

0.2

3000

Pressure (Psi)

4500

0.0
175

145
Temperature (F)

5000
100

40

Figure 7.4 mg/L as a Function of


Temperature and Pressure for BaSO4 (1)

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16.0

14.0

12.0
5000
10.0

4500
3000

Scale Tendency

1000

8.0

350
150

6.0
150

4.0

350
1000

2.0

3000

Pressure (Psi)

4500

0.0
175

5000

145
Temparture (F)

100

40

Figure 7.5 Scale Tendency as a Function of


Temperature and Pressure for BaSO4 (10)

1.4

1.2

1.0
5000
4500
3000
1000
350
150

0.8
mg/L

0.6

0.4

150
350
1000

0.2

3000

Pressure (Psi)

4500

0.0
175

145
Temperature (F)

5000
100

40

Figure 7.6 mg/L as a Function of


Temperature and Pressure for BaSO4 (10)

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16.0

14.0

12.0
5000
4500
3000
1000
350
150

10.0
Scale Tendency

8.0

6.0
150

4.0

350
1000

2.0

3000

Pressure (Psi)

4500

0.0
175

5000

145

100

40

Temperature (F)

Figure 7.7 Scale Tendency as a Function of


Temperature and Pressure for BaSO4 (100)

2.5

2.0

5000
4500
3000
1000
350
150

1.5
mg/L

1.0

150
350

0.5

1000
3000

Pressure (Psi)

4500

0.0
175

145
Temperature (F)

5000
100

40

Figure 7.8 mg/L as a Function of


Temperature and Pressure for BaSO4 (100)

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30.0

25.0

20.0

5000
4500
3000
1000

Scale Tendency 15.0

350
150

10.0
150
350
5.0

1000
Pressure (Psi)

3000
4500

0.0
175

5000

145

100

40

Temperature (F)

Figure 7.9 Scale Tendency as a Function of


Temperature and Pressure for CaCO3 (0.1)

700

600

500
5000
4500
400

3000
1000

mg/L

350
300

150

200

150
350
1000

100

3000

Pressure (Psi)

4500

0
175

145
Temperature (F)

5000
100

40

Figure 7.10 mg/L as a Function of


Temperature and Pressure for CaCO3 (0.1)

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25.0

20.0

5000
4500

15.0

3000
1000

Scale Tendency

350
150

10.0

150
350

5.0

1000
3000

Pressure (Psi)

4500

0.0
175

5000

145

100

40

Temperature (F)

Figure 7.11 Scale Tendency as a Function of


Temperature and Pressure for CaCO3 (1)

700

600

500
5000
4500
400

3000
1000

mg/L

350
300

150

200

150
350
1000

100

3000

Pressure (Psi)

4500

0
175

145

Temperature (F)

5000
100

40

Figure 7.12 mg/L as a Function of


Temperature and Pressure for CaCO3 (1)

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30.0

25.0

20.0

5000
4500
3000
1000

Scale Tendency 15.0

350
150

10.0
150
350
5.0

1000
3000

Pressure (Psi)

4500

0.0
175

5000

145

100

40

Temperature (F)

Figure 7.13 Scale Tendency as a Function of


Temperature and Pressure for CaCO3 (10)

700

600

500
5000
4500
400

3000
1000

mg/L

350
300

150

200

150
350
1000

100

3000

Pressure (Psi)

4500

0
175

145
Temperature (F)

5000
100

40

Figure 7.14 mg/L as a Function of


Temperature and Pressure for CaCO3 (10)

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230
220
210
200
190
180
170
160
150
140
130
Scale Tendency 120
110
100
90
80
70
60
50
40
30
20
10
0

5000
4500
3000
1000
350
150

150
350
1000
Pressure (Psi)

3000
4500
175

5000

145

100

40

Temperature (F)

Figure 7.15 Scale Tendency as a Function of


Temperature and Pressure for CaCO3 (100)

2000
1800
1600
1400
5000
1200

4500

mg/L 1000

1000

3000
350
150

800
600

150
350

400

1000
200

3000

Pressure (Psi)

4500

0
175

145
Temperature (F)

5000
100

40

Figure 7.16 mg/L as a Function of


Temperature and Pressure for CaCO3 (100)

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2.3.2

Unrestricted

Case B-D: Mixed Water-scaling Analysis


(Produced Water is a Combination of Formation Water and Seawater)
The input seawater composition (from Grant Gibson Bonga Subsea Systems
Engineering Team EPP) used in simulating scaling scenarios (Cases B-E) is as
follows:

Sodium (mg/L)

1968

Potassium (mg/L)

245

Calcium (mg/L)

262

Magnesium (mg/L)

1339.5

Barium (mg/L)

0.042

Strontium (mg/L)

5.66

Iron (mg/L)

0.025

Chloride (mg/L)

5075.7

Sulphate (mg/L)

3435.5

Bicarbonate (mg/L)

36.6

pH at 77F

8.3

The seawater analysis above is electro-neutrally balanced (calculation checked


using ScaleChem). However, it is different from a typical seawater composition
available in literature7 (wherein eg Na+ is ~ 10400mg/L and Cl- is ~19400mg/L).
The water analysis report6 mentions that the composition above is similar to other
water samples collected in offshore Niger Delta regions. This could be true because
of a dilution effect from the Niger Delta water. The Bonga seawater may need to be
sampled again and re-analysed to confirm previous work. The analysis should be
done by a Shell-certified laboratory or under Shell supervision. The scaling
calculations were not affected significantly by accounting for increased salt content.
We have used the above analysis as Bonga seawater. A quick simulation using
standard seawater composition7 yields different magnitudes of scaling tendencies
and amounts of scale, however the major conclusions are similar to those obtained
from simulations using the above compositions.

rd

Handbook of Chemistry and Physics, 83 edition, Pages 14 to 17.

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The methodology used in SCALECHEM is as follows:

Reconcile the seawater brine as above and saturate it with calcite at reservoir
conditions (pressure 4500psia, temperature = 145F)

This saturated seawater is then mixed with formation water (refer to Paragraph
2.1.2) in various ratios at reservoir conditions. In Case E, only seawater was
used under reservoir conditions

The output brine resulting from this mixing calculation is then used as
production brine for scaling calculations to assess scaling risk over the entire
facility (bottom hole to topsides). Similar to the self-scaling analysis,
the simulations have been run at ratios ranging from 0.1 to 100kscf of produced
gas per barrel of produced water and for a matrix of thermal-hydraulic conditions
(refer to Table 7.1)

The gas composition used for simulations is in Paragraph 2.2.1

It is worth mentioning that there is no appreciable change in the composition of the


saturated seawater, indicating that it is almost saturated at surface conditions with
this salt. We have performed simulations using two combinations:
(1)

Saturated seawater + saturated formation water.

(2)

Saturated seawater + supersaturated produced water.

Results in case (2) above will give conservative estimates. The trends and values
obtained for scaling tendency and amount of scale are similar and we will show the
results in cases of simulation using 10kscf of gas in this report. In all these
simulations, it is observed that calcium carbonate seems to be the only likely scale.
At the ratios considered (refer to Paragraph 2.3.1), the mixing of the seawater and
formation water yields a benign production water in terms of calcite scale problems.
From these simulations, it is concluded that calcite scale will cause moderate
problems around conditions of high temperature (> 145F) and low pressure
(~150psia). No appreciable scale is seen when seawater alone is produced and
therefore self-scaling is not an issue when production water is seawater only (Case E).
The results of the simulations for Cases B-D are shown in Figures 7.17 to 7.22.
For the ratio of 10kscf per day of gas produced per barrel of water; Figures 7.17 and
7.18 give the scaling tendency and amount of scale respectively for Case B.
The magnitude of scaling tendency and amount of scale obtained for remaining
ratios are very similar. Similarly, Figures 7.19 and 7.20 highlight the results for this
ratio for Case C. Case D results are shown in Figures 7.21 and 7.22.
Note: The 350psia calculation node used in the self-scaling simulations (refer to
Table 7.1) was replaced by 500psia to obtain a better midpoint for any
extrapolation that might be necessary.

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4.5

4.0

3.5
3.0

5000
4500
3000

2.5

1000

Scale Tendency

500

2.0

150

1.5
150
1.0

500
1000

0.5

3000

Pressure (Psi)

4500

0.0
175

5000

145

100

40

Temperature (F)

Figure 7.17 Scale Tendency as a


Function of Temperature and Pressure for CaCO3 (10)

250

200

5000

4500

150

3000

1000

mg/L

500

150

100

150
500

50

1000
3000

Pressure (Psi)

4500

0
175

145

Temperature (F)

5000
100

40

Figure 7.18 mg/L as a Function of


Temperature and Pressure for CaCO3 (10)

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2.5

2.0

5000
4500

1.5

3000
1000

Scale Tendency

500
150

1.0

150
500

0.5

1000
Pressure (Psi)

3000
4500

0.0
175

5000

145

100

40

Temperature (F)

Figure 7.19 Scale Tendency as a Function of


Temperature and Pressure for CaCO3 (10)

160

1 40

1 20
500 0

1 00

450 0
300 0

m g /L

100 0

80

350
150

60

1 50

40

35 0
1 000

20

300 0

P re ssu re (P si)

4 500

175

145
T em p eratu re (F )

50 00
10 0

40

Figure 7.20 mg/L as a Function of


Temperature and Pressure for CaCO3 (10)

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0.9

0.8

0.7
0.6

5000
4500
3000

0.5

1000

Scale Tendency

350

0.4

150

0.3
150
0.2

350
1000

0.1

3000

Pressure (Psi)

4500

0.0
175.0

5000

145.0

100.0

40.0

Temperature (F)

Figure 7.21 Scale Tendency as a Function of


Temperature and Pressure for CaCO3 (10)

1
1
1
1

5000
1

4500

m g /L 1

1000

3000

350

150

0
0

150
350

1000

3000

P re s s u re (P s i)

4500

0
1 7 5 .0

1 4 5 .0

T e m p e ra tu re (F )

5000
1 0 0 .0

4 0 .0

Figure 7.22 mg/L as a Function of


Temperature and Pressure for CaCO3 (10)

Section 7 Scale Review

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Section 8
Risk-based Evaluation of Scaling Tendencies
for the Subsea System

Table of Contents
1.0

INTRODUCTION............................................................................................................. 2

2.0

SUMMARY ..................................................................................................................... 3

3.0

WAY FORWARD ............................................................................................................ 4

TABLES
Table 8.1 Scaling Risks for Wells During Early Life and Late Life ........................................ 3

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INTRODUCTION
This section provides a risk-based evaluation of scaling tendencies for the Bonga
Subsea System starting from the wellbore until the topsides. The following
methodology was used to evaluate the scaling risks:
(1)

The entire Bonga production was simulated on a well-by-well basis using


PIPESIM (with the Field Planning Tool (FPT) feature).

(2)

The production function of every well was examined to quantify wellbore risk.
The production function was split into early and late-life scenarios.

(3)

(a)

Early-life constitutes the dry phase of the well with a water cut less than
2% of the entire liquid production from that particular well. During this
time, the pressure and temperature range over which the well spends
most of its early life is evaluated for scaling tendency.

(b)

Late-life constitutes the wet phase of the well with substantial water cut
(> 20%). Similarly, the pressure and temperature range over which the
well spends most of its late life is evaluated for scaling tendency. It is
important to note that almost all of the Bonga reservoirs (except for
803p2) produce a substantial amount of water and the water cut rises
quite dramatically from 0% to greater than 20% within a very short
period of time (2 to 6 months). This dramatic rise in water production is
in sharp contrast to the average production life of most Bonga wells
(range from 5 to 10 years) and hence an intermediate water cut case
(mid-life) blends into the late-life cases. 20% was chosen because this is
also the time at which the riser base gas lift is turned on, which causes a
substantial lowering of manifold pressure. Although a water cut between
2 and 20% is not explicitly covered, it is included in the late-life scenario.
This is justified because scaling problems do not occur when the well
begins to make substantial water (refer to Paragraph 2.0).

(c)

As mentioned above, the pressure and temperature range over which


the well spends most of its life was examined for scaling risks. This will
account for the most likely risk for scaling. For example, well 702p5 has
a pressure range that varies from 1000psi to 650psi (early-life, prior to
water cut). However, the well spends most of its life between 600psi and
700psi (early-life) and hence we looked at a pressure of 700psi to
evaluate scaling tendencies during early-life.

A similar approach is taken to evaluate risks for flowlines and risers.


Production profiles in each flowline and riser are evaluated and split into early
and late-life according to similar criteria as listed above. Scaling risks are then
evaluated by looking at the pressure and temperature regions where the
flowline and riser spends most of its lift.

The following assumptions are made while evaluating scaling tendencies:


(1)

Scaling tendency has been evaluated only for the Bonga Subsea System
starting from the wellbore up to the topsides. Scale has been identified as a
risk at topsides and there is provision for the injection of scale-inhibitor at
the topsides.

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(2)

Current scaling evaluations have been made with a water sample that was
obtained from the original Bonga exploration wells (Bonga No 2 well, sample
analysed in May 97). There is apparently a more credible water sample
(stored in Nigeria from both Bonga-5 (702-w4) or Bonga-7 (702-p9)), but
an analysis on this has not been performed. It is important to re-examine this
entire report once analysis from the new water sample becomes available.
In particular, attention must be paid to the barium content of the water sample
(current sample shows that amount of Ba is less than 1ppm) since this can
have substantial implications with respect of mixing with seawater.

(3)

Reservoir engineers have indicated that most of the produced water (water cuts
> 20%) in Bonga will be seawater that has been injected. The percentage
of seawater in the produced water is estimated to be greater than 70%.
Although we have calculated scaling tendencies at a seawater percentage of
as low as 25%, this assumption needs to be validated at the FPSO when the
wells begin to produce water.

(4)

We have also assumed that any small amount of water that is produced during
early life will be formation water). Moreover, we have evaluated scaling
tendencies at a ratio of 10kscf/bbl and 100kscf/bbl of water produced. This is
most consistent with the production GoRs and amount of water that might be
produced. For example, a production of 20,000bbl per day of oil (GoR of 500)
and 100 barrels per day of water results in an approximate ratio of
100kscf/bbl.

SUMMARY
Based on the main report and the production functions, we came to the following
conclusions:
(1)

Baryte scale is not a problem for Bonga, all subsequent scaling


tendencies refer only to calcite scales. However, it is critical that we verify
the water composition for barium after the field starts cutting water.

(2)

Calcite scaling is not a problem when the field starts to produce water.
This is mainly due to the fact that a mixture of seawater and formation water
leads to highly reduced scaling tendencies.

(3)

Scaling is a potential problem only during early life where formation water will
be produced. Table 8.1 describes the problem.
Early Life
(< 2% WC)

Late Life

Comments

Wells

5 wells out of 21 wells


are problematic

No Problem

Well Nos 702p5,


710p4, 803p2,
803p3

Flowlines

1 out of 8 flowline loops


are problematic

No Problem

PF-12

Risers

All risers are problematic

No Problem

Table 8.1 Scaling Risks for Wells During Early Life and Late Life

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Although, the above regions of the subsea system have been identified as
being problematic during early life, the actual risk of scale deposition is quite
low due to the following reasons:

3.0

A small amount of water typically implies that the pipe is oil-wet


(as opposed to being water-wet). This means that precipitated scale will
not have a chance to deposit on the walls of the pipe. This shows that the
likelihood of scale formation is small

Due to the small amount of water being produced, the actual amount of
scale deposited will be quite low. This will give us a chance to analyse the
water being produced and take remedial action if necessary. Moreover,
the teleconference with Phil Webb1 indicated that calcite scale deposits
over much longer timeframes than baryte scale. This shows that scale
formation is not likely to be catastrophic

Calcite scale can be remediated with an acid job. Although this


would be highly undesirable, a potential job could be arranged with
the right concoction of acid and corrosion inhibitors. The timescale
for such a remediation job would be the order of hours (as opposed to1
baryte scale, which is almost impossible to remediate). This shows that
scale could be remediated.

WAY FORWARD
In view of the above conclusions, we do not recommend scale inhibition
subsea. However, it is critical to analyse produced water from the field as soon as
the field begins to produce water. This is to verify our water analysis with respect to
calcite scale and most importantly to verify our barium content. A higher barium
content (say an increase from 1ppm to 12ppm) can result in substantial
incompatibility with seawater as shown by Morgenthaler et al (July 2000) and some
action needs to be taken.

Teleconference with Phil Webb, 24 October 2004.

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