It’s encouraging to see the comeback in shale oil & gas production here in the U.S. Oil & gas producers have made great strides in lowering the costs of drilling, hydraulic fracturing & completion and ongoing well pad production. A recent CPI Financial article noted:
Shale oil output in the US may grow sequentially by 600 thousand b/d from 4Q16 to 4Q17 on increased activity in oil rigs and fast productivity gains. Importantly, breakeven costs for key major US plays now stand around the $55/bbl mark.
One way productivity gains are being made is in reducing the capital expenditures of the well pad processing equipment. Traditional methods using test separators and associated manifold piping and valves to measure oil, gas and produced water amounts per well are being redesigned with multiphase meters. Originally developed for offshore environments, the multiphase meter technology and modularity has advanced as a great option for onshore production applications.
Laura opened the presentation highlighting the measurement considerations oil & gas producers face in optimizing assets, producing safely and with process integrity, meeting regulatory requirement, and establishing accuracy in allocations and custody transfer transactions.
Asset optimization includes reservoir and well optimization and process optimization to address optimum production levels and produced water constraints. Traditional flow measurement technologies do not handle multiple phases in the flow stream effectively. Some flow measurement technologies such as liquid turbine meters can be damage by bubbles caused by gas coming out of liquid phase. Differential pressure measurement can handle these phases but not measure the amount of each of the phases. Continue Reading ▶
Continuously operating process plants need to plan outages, also known as turnarounds, from time to time to perform maintenance and improvements not possible while the process is online. Every day of downtime is lost revenue, so carefully planning the actions to be performed during the outage is critical.
Nikki and Tim note that the turnaround personnel are:
…tasked with coordinating limited resources in a constrained time period, and must ensure that they are safely working only on the assets that need attention. Missing a required maintenance service, or doing unnecessary work, has the potential for extending the turnaround schedule, which increases the probability of an unscheduled shutdown after the turnaround is completed.
They explain that these turnarounds typically were performed on 3-to-5 year intervals, with some now stretching out to 5-to-7 years between turnarounds. This can create issues with collective experience with many involved moving into different roles during these intervals.
The mission of this blog has always been to bring the experts around Emerson to you. Many of these folks also share their expertise in our Emerson Exchange 365 global user community and with LinkedIn posts. I’ll highlight an example I saw today.
Natural Gas has become the desired fuel for gas turbines used in modern power plants. Gas turbines are extremely sensitive to contaminants carry-over into the combustors, thus requires fuel gas to be treated to high level of purity for total protection and optimal operation. Gas Conditioning skids are used to clean and treat the gas to achieve the best results and ensure the highest turbine performance.
These gas conditioning skids perform the functions of removing contaminants entrained in the gas stream, superheating the gas stream above the hydrocarbon dew point, reducing pressure and maintaining tight pressure control, measuring the gas flow rate, and odorizing the gas so that it can be smelled in case of leaks. Continue Reading ▶
The biennial Petrotech conference in New Delhi, India is for oil & gas industry experts to exchange views and share knowledge, expertise and experiences. And given the pricing dynamics and changes in global supply levels and supply chains, there is much to discuss and share.
At the last conference this past December, Emerson’s Rajesh Nogaja presented Online Real-time Corrosion/ Erosion Monitoring Systems Ensure Top Quartile Business Performance. Here is an excerpt from the abstract of this presentation:
Corrosion and erosion is a major challenge for the Oil and Gas industry, Pipelines, Refineries and Petrochemical plants. Online Realtime Corrosion/Erosion Monitoring Systems helps the customer increase Profitability, Optimise Costs and Enhance Overall safety. Areas of Top Quartile Business Performance Improvements achieved are:
Increased Production rates and margins through Use of High TAN Opportunity Crudes
Sustainability of Infrastructure and Assets for longer periods, delayed Turnarounds
Early detection of Possible Piping and Asset Failures, improving safety and reliability
Rajesh discussed both inline/intrusive monitoring systems and non-intrusive ones. Roxar coupons are installed in pipes and vessels for some time period. Loss rate is determined by the coupon weight loss but can be affected by deposits, bacteria and corrosion. Roxar probes have very high sensitivity and ultrafast responses to provide efficient process corrosion/erosion management through the use of inhibitors and controlling production rates. Continue Reading ▶
Those with smart instrumentation know that installation, configuration and maintenance activities often require the plant technicians to carry multiple tools such as external power supplies or loop simulators in addition to the handheld instrumentation communicator device. Properly functioning instrumentation helps the operations staff and automation system control strategies manage the process more safely, reliably and efficiently.