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22 09, 2020

Determining Corrosion Repairs Using a Simplified Reliability Approach

The reliability-based approach has been gaining popularity in the industry as a tool for planning transmission pipeline corrosion management programs. Compared to the typical experience-based deterministic safety factors prescribed in standards, the traditional reliability-based approach has the following advantages and disadvantages: Traditional Reliability-Based Approach Experience-Based Deterministic Safety Factors + produces a consistent risk level after repairs - produces unknown risk level after repairs + reduces unnecessary excavations by targeting high-risk pipeline sections - does not target high-risk locations - uses computationally challenging probabilistic calculations + uses simple deterministic calculations C-FER has developed a simplified [...]

14 06, 2020

How Can Pipeline Operators Evaluate Novel Non-welding Repair Technologies?

Flaws and defects in pipelines can result in significant problems. Fortunately, a new generation of tools are now available to detect circumferential crack-like features. Once detected, pipeline operators have a few options to repair these flaws: Replace the section of pipe; Weld a metal sleeve over an extended area; or Use any one of many possible non-welded repair technologies. One main challenge for operators is choosing the right repair solution for their specific operating conditions. Why Not Repair the Flaw with Traditional Welding? Welding a metal sleeve is the traditional approach, but it can also create problems. Welding [...]

4 05, 2020

Evaluating the Benefits of Solvents and Flow Control Devices (FCDs) for Thermal Production

Evaluating Solvent-enhanced Thermal Processes to Replace or Supplement Recovery in Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage (SAGD) Operations Downhole Flow Control Devices (FCDs) installed in SAGD wells have been shown to reduce the Cumulative Steam Oil Ratio and increase net oil recovery. When used correctly, FCDs can provide improved efficiency over "traditional" SAGD and a lower GHG intensity per unity of production. At the same time, the industry has been evaluating a variety of solvent-enhanced thermal processes to replace or supplement recovery. These processes typically use various combinations of hydrocarbon solvents and Non-Condensable Gases (NCGs) to replace some or all of [...]

10 03, 2020

On Water Leak Detection

Detecting Oil Spills on Inland Waterways Pose Significant Challenges Detecting oil spilled on inland waterways poses a significant challenge to pipeline operators due to: Changing water levels and flow rates; Presence of debris and suspended sediment; Floating and submerged oil; Ice cover for large portions of the year; and Remote locations with no supporting infrastructure. Bringing Value to Technology Evaluation by Simulating Realistic, Full-scale Conditions in a Controlled Environment The project will identify potential technologies and set up realistic, full-scale trials to help operators select the best technology to rapidly and reliably detect oil spills on inland waterways. [...]

3 03, 2020

Special Considerations for Well Tubular Design at Elevated Temperatures

Abstract Understanding of material properties for tubular design under HPHT conditions goes well beyond the basics of the classic methods routinely employed in the industry. The objective of this paper is to highlight several important characteristics of the stress-strain response of high strength tubular materials which differ at elevated temperatures relative to room temperature, and to demonstrate the significant impact these differences can have on the pipe body strength and connection mechanical/sealability performance under HPHT conditions. Coupon test results of high strength tubulars commonly used in HPHT wells are presented to demonstrate the key differences in the stress-strain response [...]

22 02, 2020

High Temperature FCD Characterization

Choosing the Right Flow Control Device (FCD) to Maximize Well Performance Flow Control Device (FCD) technology has revolutionized Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage (SAGD). When used correctly FCDs can lower Steam Oil Ratios (SORs) and increase production. This improves SAGD economics and greatly lowers Green-house Gas (GHG) emissions. The challenge for operators is knowing which type of FCD technology is best for their wells. To choose the right technology, it’s important to first understand the complex, multiphase hydraulic performance of FCDs under SAGD representative conditions. Operators can use this information in their coupled thermal-hydraulic reservoir models to predict their [...]

22 02, 2020

Airborne Leak Detection

Introducing Leak Detection Systems for Monitoring Pipeline Operations Pipeline operators are interested in using a variety of leak detection systems to ensure the safe operation of their pipelines. Among the systems being considered are various detectors that can be mounted on aircraft that can augment the regular right-of-way inspections that are already being conducted. Some technologies are already used to detect leaks from natural gas pipelines; however, leaks from liquid pipelines can be more difficult to detect due to the behavior of the liquid hydrocarbon as it enters the soil. The challenge is to detect small liquid hydrocarbon leaks [...]

30 09, 2019

Laboratory and Field Testing of a Steam-limiting Flow Control Device Developed for Thermal Applications

Abstract A review of laboratory and field testing of a new flow control device is presented in this paper. The device is designed specifically to limit steam breakthrough in thermal operations. For the past few years, four companies operating Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage (SAGD) facilities in Alberta's oil sands have come together to study downhole Flow Control Devices (FCDs) in a laboratory setting and to share field data of the application of such devices. Within this collaboration, a new device was designed to address the challenge specific to thermal operations, namely limiting steam breakthrough into production wells. Laboratory tests [...]

30 09, 2019

Characterization of Flow Control Device Performance with Distributed Fiber-optic Sensors

Abstract It is becoming common to install inflow control devices (ICDs) along steam-assisted gravity drainage (SAGD) production liners to enhance temperature conformance and accelerate depletion. Additionally, some operators advocate the installation of similar outflow control devices (OCDs) along the injection well of the SAGD well pair. Collectively, these inflow and outflow devices are often referred to as FCDs. Industry adoption of flow control devices (FCDs) has increased, and several devices are commercially available for use in SAGD. In an effort to optimize FCD design and selection, a joint industry partnership (JIP) was formed (Vachon et al. 2015) and flow [...]

13 05, 2019

Assessment of ESP No-flow Events in SAGD Production Wells

Abstract This paper summarizes the work of the exploratory phase of a Joint Industry Project (JIP) investigating operational instabilities and ‘no flow’ events observed in a large number of Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage (SAGD) wells produced with ESPs; where, while the ESP is operating, flow to surface suddenly stops. The impact of these events to the SAGD operations has included lost production due to downtime and reduced drawdown, additional stresses to the ESP due to operating without flow for extended periods and repeated shutdowns and restarts and some system failures. The primary objectives of this exploratory phase were to [...]

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