Through the system, operators can instantly identify changes in the flow stream and the smallest amounts of saline water with higher sensitivity than before. This enables the operator to take immediate remedial action to prevent threats to production, such as scaling, hydrate formation and corrosion. The onset of formation water and its salinity, if not controlled, can lead to well shutdowns and cost producers millions in unplanned shutdown time.
The system, which is a key element of the Roxar Subsea Wetgas Meter and is based on microwave resonance technology, provides quantitative and qualitative real-time salinity measurements in many types of field conditions but, particularly, in the high gas volume fraction (GVF)/wet gas flows that characterize wet gas fields.
The Roxar Salinity Measurement System has been designed as part of the Roxar Subsea Wetgas Meter, which provides individual flow rates of gas, condensate/oil and water. The salinity system consists of a salinity sensor mounted flush with the wall of the meter. The MW resonance technology ensures an instant response to changes to conductivity of the flow stream – in seconds, the company assures – and the ability to measure water conductivity down to ± 0.1 S/m and up to 99.99% GVF and sensitivity in the range of ± 0,004 S/m. Small pockets of formation water leaking into the flow can therefore be detected instantaneously rather than in hours and days – something that no other technology has achieved to date.
Emerson conducted extensive testing of the new system internally and at the Colorado Experience Engineering Station in the United States based on a leading operator’s specifications. In all cases, the system was found to have the high levels of accuracy and sensitivity required.