Study on the Behaviours of Settled Heavier Phase in Two Phase Flows in Pipelines

Koguna, Aminu J. A. (Cranfield University) | Yeung, Hoi (Cranfield University) | Lao, Liyun (Cranfield University)



Pipelines transfer production fluids from the well head to the platform and from the platform to process facilities. Water, sand or liquids like condensate could settle at the bottom of pipelines especially at low flow velocities and this has implication for flow assurance. During shutdown the settled heavy liquid (e.g. water), could result in corrosion in pipelines, while following restart stages the settled water could form a water plug that could damage equipment, while settled sand could also form a blockage that needs to be dispersed into the flowing fluid. This study looked at cases of low water cut in oil flows and, low sand concentrations in water flows. Conductive film thickness probes were used to obtain oil and water interface height and the water film velocities in water in oil flows.

Similarly values for the sand in water, sand layer profiles and sand dune velocities were investigated respectively. Comparisons are made between two cases in order to gain better understanding of the dispersal process of low loading heavier phase in two phase flows.