The Subsea Sand Management Challenge – What to Do with the Sand?

Charles H. Rawlins, John C. Ditria
2019 Offshore Technology Conference   unpublished
Sand is a limiting design factor for facilities in terms of operability, throughput, and maintenance. These effects are more critical when dealing with subsea processing due to the equipment access and risk exposure. Technologies for erosion management, sand separation, and solids disposal are well proven for surface facilities. For example, the wellhead desander, located upstream of the choke, effectively separates sand from the multiphase well flow and can be marinized for subsea use.
more » ... the crucial question is "What to do with the sand?" This white paper provides a focal point for the discussion on sand management in subsea processing. The broad categories for dealing with sand include neutralization of the effects, improvements in conventional design, and separation with disposal. These categories have been analyzed based on the conventional design, treatment of the solids, and removal of the solids. More than thirty discrete treatment routes were surveyed, including conventional production limits, flow path modification, chemical treatment, sand cleaning, mechanical attrition, slurry fracture injection, and accretion disposal. Many of these technologies have analogues in other particulate processing industries that can be adapted to upstream oil and gas production. This work is part of ongoing research in Facilities Sand Management with the goal of improving the hydrocarbon recovery through inclusionary sand production.
doi:10.4043/29278-ms fatcat:oniu7yekzjfithxkyf4bz3eddu