DOE, University of Tulsa to study pipeline paraffin deposits


The US Energy Department, the University of Tulsa, and 14 private companies plan a study of wax accumulation in deepwater pipelines using a highly instrumented flow loop test facility.

DOE said paraffin deposits in deepwater oil pipelines are a problem for producers because they can restrict the flow of oil and gas liquids from platforms.

It will pay $1.2 million and TU and its partners another $1.3 million to fund the 3-year project.

DOE said most crude oils contain long-chained molecules of wax in proportions that can vary up to as much as 60% of the oil's weight. In refineries, the paraffin wax can be separated and sold as a commercial product. But in a pipeline or a wellbore, especially where in the cold subsea temperatures of the Gulf of Mexico, the paraffin can deposit along the pipe wall. It said removing blockages in water depths of around 400 m can cost $1 million/mile or more.

The TU project will begin by enhancing computer models developed in prior DOE projects. Previous experiments using TU's flow loop testing facilities confirmed that a broader collection of experimental data, including other oil samples, is needed to develop more accurate methods for predicting the complex processes of paraffin deposition.

Researchers will pump a variety of crudes and oil/gas mixtures through the test loop. Using data from these experiments, the existing computer programs will be enhanced and tested against field data.

TU's flow loop could also be used to test and qualify subsea measurement sensors that are being developed to detect deposit thickness in flow lines and pipelines.

DOE said better models and paraffin sensors could reduce pigging and help operators place safety valves to minimize the chances of failures due to paraffin fouling.

Related Articles

OGJ Newsletter

07/20/2015

International news for oil and gas professionals

PHMSA issues state pipeline excavation damage prevention programs rule

07/17/2015 The US Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration issued a final rule to establish the process for evaluating state excavation damage p...

US House panel grills PHMSA's interim chief over pipeline safety delays

07/17/2015 Members of a US House Energy and Commerce subcommittee asked US Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration Interim Executive Director S...

EIA: US oil output fell 50,000 b/d in May

07/17/2015 Total US crude oil production dropped 50,000 b/d in May compared with April and is expected to continue falling through early 2016 before growth re...

Advocates urge US to end its crude export ban in Iran agreement's wake

07/17/2015 Advocates called for removing the US ban on exports of domestically produced crude oil in the wake of the July 14 international nuclear weapons agr...

Ending crude export ban would help rural US areas, House panel told

07/17/2015 Rural US communities generally have benefited from the nation's crude oil production renaissance, and potentially could be helped more if restricti...

House panel's oil export ban hearing weighs urgency against caution

07/17/2015 A US House Energy and Commerce subcommittee hearing on legislation to repeal the ban on exporting US-produced crude oil quickly broke along party l...

TGP advances Northeast Energy Direct gas line to New England

07/17/2015 Tennessee Gas Pipeline Co. (TGP), a subsidiary of Kinder Morgan Inc. (KMI), Houston, has been cleared by KMI’s board to proceed with plans to build...

Net product exports

07/17/2015

Record refinery runs and rising global demand for petroleum products from the US in 2015 has increased net petroleum product exports.

White Papers

Solutions to Financial Distress Resulting from a Weak Oil and Gas Price Environment

The oil and gas industry is in the midst of a prolonged worldwide downturn in commodity prices. While ...
Sponsored by

2015 Global Engineering Information Management Solutions Competitive Strategy Innovation and Leadership Award

The Frost & Sullivan Best Practices Awards recognise companies in a variety of regional and global...
Sponsored by

Three Tips to Improve Safety in the Oil Field

Working oil fields will always be tough work with inherent risks. There’s no getting around that. Ther...
Sponsored by

Pipeline Integrity: Best Practices to Prevent, Detect, and Mitigate Commodity Releases

Commodity releases can have catastrophic consequences, so ensuring pipeline integrity is crucial for p...
Sponsored by

AVEVA’s Digital Asset Approach - Defining a new era of collaboration in capital projects and asset operations

There is constant, intensive change in the capital projects and asset life cycle management. New chall...
Sponsored by

Transforming the Oil and Gas Industry with EPPM

With budgets in the billions, timelines spanning years, and life cycles extending over decades, oil an...
Sponsored by

Asset Decommissioning in Oil & Gas: Transforming Business

Asset intensive organizations like Oil and Gas have their own industry specific challenges when it com...
Sponsored by

Squeezing the Green: How to Cut Petroleum Downstream Costs and Optimize Processing Efficiencies with Enterprise Project Portfolio Management Solutions

As the downstream petroleum industry grapples with change in every sector and at every level, includin...
Sponsored by
Available Webcasts


The Resilient Oilfield in the Internet of Things World

When Tue, Sep 22, 2015

As we hear about the hype surrounding the Internet of Things, the oil and gas industry is questioning what is different than what is already being done. What is new?  Using sensors and connecting devices is nothing new to our mode of business and in many ways the industry exemplifies many principles of an industrial internet of things. How does the Internet of Things impact the oil and gas industry?

Prolific instrumentation and automation digitized the industry and has changed the approach to business models calling for a systems led approach.  Resilient Systems have the ability to adapt to changing circumstances while maintaining their central purpose.  A resilient system, such as Maximo, allows an asset intensive organization to leverage connected devices by merging real-time asset information with other critical asset information and using that information to create a more agile organization.  

Join this webcast, sponsored by IBM, to learn how about Internet of Things capabilities and resilient systems are impacting the landscape of the oil and gas industry.

register:WEBCAST



On Demand

Taking the Headache out of Fuel License and Exemption Certificates: How to Ensure Compliance

Tue, Aug 25, 2015

This webinar, brought to you by Avalara, will detail the challenges of tax document management, as well as recommend solutions for fuel suppliers. You will learn:

-    Why it’s critical to track business partner licenses and exemption documents
-    The four key business challenges of ensuring tax compliance through document management
-    Best practice business processes to minimize exposure to tax errors

register:WEBCAST


Driving Growth and Efficiency with Deep Insights into Operational Data

Wed, Aug 19, 2015

Capitalizing on today’s momentum in Oil & Gas requires operational excellence based on a clear view of what your business data is telling you. Which is why nearly half* of oil and gas companies have deployed SAP HANA or have it on their roadmap.

Join SAP and Red Hat to learn more about using data to drive process improvements and identify new opportunities with the SAP HANA platform running on Red Hat Enterprise Linux. This webinar will also show how your choice of infrastructure impacts the performance of core business applications and your ability to achieve data-driven insights quickly and reliably.

*48% use SAP, http://go.sap.com/solution/industry/oil-gas.html

register:WEBCAST


OGJ's Midyear Forecast 2015

Fri, Jul 10, 2015

This webcast is to be presented by OGJ Editor Bob Tippee and Senior Economic Editor Conglin Xu.  They will summarize the Midyear Forecast projections in key categories, note important changes from January’s forecasts, and examine reasons for the adjustments.

register:WEBCAST


Emerson Micro Motion Videos

Careers at TOTAL

Careers at TOTAL - Videos

More than 600 job openings are now online, watch videos and learn more!

 

Click Here to Watch

Other Oil & Gas Industry Jobs

Search More Job Listings >>
Stay Connected