Flow Assurance

SafeHeat® technology, custom thermal fluids, and flow assurance engineering provide total approach for plugged GoM pipeline.

Location: Gulf of Mexico

PIPELINE SPECIFICATIONS

6 inch Oil Sales Pipeline
9,900’
346 bbl. capacity

BACKGROUND

A GoM operator experienced increased differential pressures on a bulk crude sales pipeline. Failed production chemical soaks deemed ineffective in mitigating the issue and indicated paraffin deposition near the subsea tie-in location. Once differential pressures levels reached severe ranges, well production rates dramatically overshadowed oil sales capacity.

SOLUTION

BlueFin was challenged to develop a remediation plan that alleviated the accumulation of solids material. Combining in-depth analysis on the oil and deposit material with a modeled estimate of deposition severity, BlueFin’s approach utilized customized Inferno® thermal fluids coupled with SafeHeat® technology.

Plan of Execution

  • Isolate the operator’s crude pipeline through closure of the SSTI valve adjoining the 16-inch sales pipeline to the 20-inch liquids transmission pipeline.
  • Pump Inferno® 4030 to the SSTI manifold via the bypass line and into the flowline covering 25% of the flowline geometry.
  • Utilize crude production and platform pumps to flow back Inferno® 4030 treatments to the marine vessel.
  • Repeat this step until pressure differentials reach 100 psi.

Technical Achievements

  • 175 bbl. of solids were removed.
  • An additional 30 bbl. of liquid deposition was removed in solution form with our Inferno 4030 solvent.
  • Decreased differential pressure from 1,300 psi at 26 gpm to 100 psi at 80 gpm.
  • Increased production and reduced pump wear through excessive utilization.
  • Remediated obstructions that would have eventually caused a total line restriction.
  • Alleviated the need for expensive coil tubing intervention.
  • Project executed with assistance from a major marine contractor onboard a DP2 vessel.
  • Project completed with zero incidents and no environmental impact.