The design and development of a small-scale, multiphase flow loop for the study of corrosion in sour/sweet gas environments


In high CO2 content oil reservoirs, CO2 reinjection is commonly used as an enhanced oil recovery technique, allowing for higher oil recovery and reducing CO2 emissions. As time passes, the CO2 content produced increases due to the recycling of this gas and producer flowlines will have increased partial pressure of CO2 together with the increasing produced water. In these conditions, some flow regimes coexist along pipes, for example the slug flow which increases the internal corrosion rate of carbon-steel pipelines. For flowing assurance in oil-gas pipelines, investigations and tests in multiphase-flow loops are necessary including all of the following factors: loop geometry and dimensions; operating pressure and temperature; ranges of phase-flow rates; equipment and instrumentation; piping material; fluid properties; data acquisition and information processing systems. A laboratory multiphase flow loop has been designed based on literature data and constructed for developing a study related to the corrosiveness of sour/sweet gas in multiphase flow. All components of the loop (pumps, tanks, and compressors, valves, piping and monitoring systems) were designed so that all gases were safely collected and treated without risk of leakage. This unique system was housed in an explosion-proof area providing a safe location for the intended study. This paper describes the fluid pumping system, the flow monitoring system, the corrosion monitoring methods and safety systems of the new experimental loop. Before the use of the loop, activities were conducted to validate the adequacy of the multiphase-flow loop for the intended study, i.e., to establish the parameters of the loop operating conditions which reproduce the field conditions. Such parameters were: pressure and temperature levels; fluid types; flow regimes; piping geometry, inclination, and diameter. Building a flow loop, that reproduces exactly a real hydrocarbon well, including the reservoir inertia and the complex heat transfer process taking place between the wellbore and the reservoir, is not feasible. Thus, downscaling typical field parameters was necessary to study multiphase-flow-induced .

SILVA, Carlos Alberto da; NEVES FILHO, David Rodrigues das; NUNES, Gislaine Maria Bragagnolo; BASSANI, G.S.; ALMEIDA, Nesuvaldo Lira; PANOSSIAN, Zehbour. The design and development of a small-scale, multiphase flow loop for the study of corrosion in sour/sweet gas environments. In: RIO PIPELINE CONFERENCE & ESHIBITION, 2019, Rio de Janeiro. Proceedings… 10p.

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