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Reference Number EP/F017448/1
Title MULTIPHASE FLOW IN VERTICAL AND DEVIATED PIPES
Status Completed
Energy Categories FOSSIL FUELS: OIL, GAS and COAL(Oil and Gas, Enhanced oil and gas production) 100%;
Research Types Basic and strategic applied research 80%;
Applied Research and Development 20%;
Science and Technology Fields ENGINEERING AND TECHNOLOGY (Chemical Engineering) 100%
UKERC Cross Cutting Characterisation Not Cross-cutting 100%
Principal Investigator Dr OK Matar
No email address given
Chemical Engineering
Imperial College London
Award Type Standard
Funding Source EPSRC
Start Date 01 June 2008
End Date 31 May 2011
Duration 36 months
Total Grant Value £235,485
Industrial Sectors Energy
Region London
Programme NC : Engineering
 
Investigators Principal Investigator Dr OK Matar , Chemical Engineering, Imperial College London (99.997%)
  Other Investigator Professor GF Hewitt , Chemical Engineering, Imperial College London (0.001%)
Dr PDM (Peter ) Spelt , Chemical Engineering, Imperial College London (0.001%)
Professor C (Chris ) Lawrence , Institute for Energy Technology, Norway (IFE) (0.001%)
  Industrial Collaborator Project Contact , Sheffield Forgemasters Engineering Ltd (SFEL) (0.000%)
Project Contact , Advantica Ltd (0.000%)
Project Contact , BP Exploration Co Ltd (0.000%)
Project Contact , ConocoPhillips (UK) Ltd (0.000%)
Project Contact , CD adapco Group (0.000%)
Project Contact , Petróleo Brasileiro SA (PETROBRAS), Brazil (0.000%)
Project Contact , Institut Français du Pétrole, France (0.000%)
Project Contact , Total E&P UK PLC (0.000%)
Project Contact , Petróleos de Venezuela, S.A. (PDVSA) (0.000%)
Project Contact , Chevron Energy Technology Company, USA (0.000%)
Project Contact , ENI S.p.A., Italy (0.000%)
Project Contact , ExxonMobil Upstream Research Company (URC), USA (0.000%)
Project Contact , FEESA Limited (0.000%)
Project Contact , Norsk Hydro ASA, Norway (0.000%)
Project Contact , Scandpower Petroleum Technology AS, Norway (0.000%)
Project Contact , Sintef, Norway (0.000%)
Project Contact , Statoil ASA, Norway (0.000%)
Web Site
Objectives
Abstract This proposal addresses the vital issue of prediction of multiphase flows in large diameter risers in off-shore hydrocarbon recovery. The riser is essentially a vertical or near-vertical pipe connecting the sea-bed collection pipe network (the flowlines) to a sea-surface installation, typically a floating receiving and processing vessel. In the early years of oil and gas exploration and production, the oil and gas companies selected the largest and most accessible off-shore fields to develop first. In these systems, the risers were relatively short and had modest diameters. However, as these fields are being depleted, the oil and gas companies are being forced to look further afield for replacement reserves capable of being developed economically. This, then, has led to increased interest in deeper waters, and harsher and more remote environments, most notably in the Gulf of Mexico, the Brazilian Campos basin, West of Shetlands and the Angolan Aptian basin. Many of the major deepwater developments are located in water depths exceeding 1km (e.g. Elf's Girassol at 1300m or Petrobras' Roncador at 1500-2000m). To transport the produced fluids in such systems with the available pressure driving forces has led naturally to the specification of risers of much greater diameter (typically 300 mm) than those used previously (typically 75 mm). Investments in such systems have been, and will continue to be, huge (around $35 billion up to 2005) with the riser systems accounting for around 20% of the costs. Prediction of the performance of the multiphase flow riser systems is of vital importance but, very unfortunately, available methods for such prediction are of doubtful validity. The main reason for this is that the available data and methods have been based on measurements on smaller diameter tubes (typically 25-75 mm) and on the interpretation of these measurements in terms of the flow patterns occurring in such tubes. These flow patterns are typicallybubble, slug, churn and annular flows. The limited amount of data available shows that the flow patterns in larger tubes may be quite different and that, within a given flow pattern, the detailed phenomena may also be different. For instance, there are reasons to believe that slug flow of the normal type (with liquid slugs separated by Taylor bubbles of classical shape) may not exist in large pipes.Methods to predict such flows with confidence will be improved significantly by means of an integrated programme of work at three universities (Nottingham, Cranfield and Imperial College) which will involve both larger scale investigations as well as investigations into specific phenomena at a more intimate scale together with modelling studies. Large facilities at Nottingham and Cranfield will be used for experiments in which the phase distribution about the pipe cross section will be measured using novel instrumentation which can handle a range of fluids. The Cranfield tests will beat a very large diameter (250 mm) but will be confined to vertical, air/water studies with special emphasis on large bubbles behaviour. In contrast those at Nottingham will employ a slightly smaller pipe diameter (125 mm) but will use newly built facilities in which a variety of fluids can be employed to vary physical properties systematically and can utilise vertical and slightly inclined test pipes. The work to be carried out at Imperial College will be experimental and numerical. The former will focus on examining the spatio-temporal evolution of waves in churn and annular flows in annulus geometries; the latter will use interface-tracking methods to perform simulations of bubbles in two-phase flow and will also focus on the development of a computer code capable of predicting reliably the flow behaviour in large diameter pipes. This code will use as input the information distilled from the other work-packages regarding the various flow regimes along the pipe
Publications (none)
Final Report (none)
Added to Database 31/10/07