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Replacing Chemical Biocides with Targeted Bacteriophages in Deepwater Pipelines and Reservoirs

2008 Ultra-Deepwater

Project Number: 08121-2902-04 Project Status: completed
Start Date: Jan. 21, 2010 End Date: Feb. 20, 2012
RPSEA PM: Don Richardson Principal Investigator: Neil Summer
Subcontractor: Phage Biocontrol, LLC.
Project Objectives:

The objective of the project is to evaluate the use of bacteriophage, or phage, the natural viral predators of bacteria, in a focused approach to reduce the agents of microbially influenced corrosion of from the production wellhead to the refinery including pipelines. Phage are highly specific to their target bacteria and are harmless to any other cells, or nonā€targeted bacteria. Phage targeting problem bacteria can be injected at the head of the pipeline for long term biological control, thus reducing the environmental impact by negating the use of biocides for bacteria control.

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Low Cost Flexible Production System for Remote Ultra-Deepwater Gulf of Mexico (GOM) Field Development

2010 Ultra-Deepwater

Project Number: 10121-4404-03 Project Status: completed
Start Date: Oct. 29, 2012 End Date: Sept. 30, 2016
RPSEA PM: Bill Fincham Principal Investigator: Jelena Vidic-Perunovic
Subcontractor: Doris, Inc.
Project Objectives:

The objective of this project was to study the feasibility of a circular shaped floating platform unit as compared to two current FPU concepts, semi-sub and spars. The floater host was located in 2,000-3,000 meters of water depth. Production was gathered via four production risers from two separate drill centers. The plan was to have gas exported with a gas riser/pipeline. The drill centersl sustained a total of 10 wells. Each well was connected to wet trees controlled via umbilicals and power cables. Artificial lifts supplied by either subsea pumps or downhole electric submersible pumps, was required. Processed oil was directly offloaded from a single offloading station. It is anticipated that capacity for three additional risers for future improved oil recovery via water injection and/or future tie-ins will be required.

 

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Development of Geographic Information System (GIS) - Based Tool for Optimized Fluid Management in Shale Gas Operations

2011 Unconventional Resources

Project Number: 11122-55 Project Status: active
Start Date: March 8, 2013 End Date: Sept. 30, 2016
RPSEA PM: Sandy McSurdy Principal Investigator: Kenneth Carlson
Subcontractor: Colorado State University
Project Objectives:

The overall objective of this proposed study was to provide a set of web-based tools that will enable producers and other users to characterize, treat, beneficially use, and manage produced water and frac flowback water from unconventional gas production. The goal is to sustain gas production while minimizing potential impacts on natural water resources, public health, and environment. Built upon the integrated decision making framework developed for CBM produced water management, the proposed study focuses on shale gas and tight sand production, the most difficult and least developed. The proposed research was designed for 36 months and organized into four phases.The overall objective of the proposal was to develop GIS-based tools that can be used to optimize water management decisions during unconventional oil and gas development and production to minimize the environmental impact. The environmental impacts that will be directly assessed with the tool include the handling, treatment and disposal of produced water, air toxics and greenhouse gases associated with fluids handling, water footprint, and the optimal siting of wells and treatment facilities with respect to community impacts.

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Subsea High Voltage Direct Current Connectors for Environmentally Safe and Reliable Powering of UDW Subsea Processing

2012 Ultra-Deepwater

Project Number: 12121-6302-01 Project Status: completed
Start Date: June 20, 2014 End Date: Sept. 30, 2016
RPSEA PM: Gary Covatch Principal Investigator: Qin Chen
Subcontractor: GE Global Research
Project Objectives:

The objective of this project was to assess the risks and close the technology gaps of subsea DC connectors, a critical component to ensure the safe and reliable operation of subsea high voltage direct current (HVDC) transmission and distribution (T&D) systems, which is the emerging technology for environmentally safe and reliable powering of long step-out, ultra-deepwater (UDW) subsea oil and gas processing. The program demonstrated the HVDC electrical functionality of the connector, and together with the field-proven mechanical design this will retire the key technical risks in order to reach Technology Readiness Level (TRL) 3.  The project was conducted in two phases: In Phase 1, the detailed technical requirements and the technical gaps for DC connectors will be identified, and preliminary analytical and experimental studies will be conducted in preparation for the prototype development. In Phase 2, the novel subsea HVDC connector design concepts will be proposed and validated by constructing and testing electrical mock-up prototypes under ambient and simulated subsea conditions in the lab.

 

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Development of Advanced CFD Tools for the Enhanced Prediction of Explosion Pressure Development and Deflagration Risk on Drilling and Production Facilities

2012 Ultra-Deepwater

Project Number: 12121-6403-01 Project Status: completed
Start Date: Aug. 23, 2014 End Date: Sept. 30, 2016
RPSEA PM: Gary Covatch Principal Investigator: Scott Davis
Subcontractor: GexCon US, Inc.
Project Objectives:

The objective of the project was to provide oil and gas companies operating in the GOM with the tools necessary to design “inherently safer” offshore facilities that can survive gas explosion incidents and prevent escalation. This project enhanced and validated the capabilities of the industry-standard explosion modeling CFD software, FLACS, to aid in reducing the HS&E-related incidents in the GOM. The project has improved and adapted the capabilities of FLACS to predict MCE early in the design phase of GOM UDW drilling and production facilities and provide the information necessary to design facilities to minimize the consequences of explosion incidents. The project was divided into two phases. In Phase 1, the FLACS DDT onset prediction capability was validated for scales and geometries relevant to GOM UDW structures through a series of large-scale experiments to provide data for model validation of FLACS. In Phase 2 an anticipated congestion methodology (ACM) was developed for GOM offshore drilling and production facilities.

 

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Characterizing Stimulation Domains, for Improved Well Completions in Gas Shales

2009 Unconventional Resources

Project Number: 09122-02 Project Status: completed
Start Date: March 17, 2011 End Date: Dec. 31, 2013
RPSEA PM: Charlotte Schroeder Principal Investigator: Ian Palmer
Subcontractor: Higgs-Palmer Technologies
Project Objectives:

The objective of the project was to create an innovative user-friendly software prototype (called DomAnal) that can be used by operators to characterize flow properties of stimulation domains, diagnose well stimulations, and provide options to improve well stimulations. DomAnal shall be a fast analytic screening model, with appropriate approximations, rather than a slow completely rigorous numerical model, such as finite elements.

 

The software screening tool, DomAnal, developed during this project and the associated documentation can be found here.

The software program and two benchmark input files are available on the RPSEA Dropbox at the link above. This RPSEA project is complete, and there is no formal arrangement to maintain the software. If there are questions regarding DomAnal, bugs in the software, or other improvements are desired, this must be negotiated privately between the user and Higgs-Palmer Technologies. Please contact Ian Palmer at ian@higgs-palmer.com.

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Hi-Res Environmental Data for Enhanced UDW Operations Safety

2011 Ultra-Deepwater

Project Number: 11121-5801-01 Project Status: completed
Start Date: Feb. 18, 2014 End Date: Sept. 30, 2016
RPSEA PM: David Cercone Principal Investigator: Grant Stuart
Subcontractor: Fugro Global Environmental and Ocean Sciences, Inc.
Project Objectives:

Ocean currents can pose significant challenges to safe oil and gas operations in the Gulf of Mexico (GoM). One primary objective of this research program was to better understand the physical mechanisms that cause periods of elevated current velocities. Specifically, the passage of Tropical Revolving Storms (TRS) over areas of relatively higher sea surface temperature (e.g., loop current (LC) or associated eddy (LCE)) may cause elevated currents in the boundary layers of the water column. Two in situ current measurement programs will focus on near bottom and near surface boundary layers and compare them to expert 3-D numerical models. The second primary objective of this program was to develop a technique to survey surface currents in real-time over a large horizontal range of at least 300 km per day.

 

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Analysis of Best Practices for Deepwater Cementing in Oil Based Mud (OBM) and Synthetic Based Mud (SBM)

2012 Ultra-Deepwater

Project Number: 12121-6503-01 Project Status: completed
Start Date: June 25, 2014 End Date: Sept. 30, 2016
RPSEA PM: Rob Vagnetti Principal Investigator: Jeff Watters
Subcontractor: CSI Technologies, LLC
Project Objectives:

The objectives of this project are to develop fundamental knowledge of mud-cement compatibility issues related specifically to deepwater cementing, to quantify risks associated with cementing in OBM/SBM and to develop best practices and derive recommendations in order to reduce the recognized risks. This study will analyze the relationship between temperature, pressure, cement bond, degree of mud removal and its effect on zonal isolation in complex well architecture. Fluids under laboratory investigation will include typical commercially available designs of cement slurries, SBM, OBM, and spacers with a focus on micro-particulate fluids and other new technologies. Environmental benefits of a successful project include a decrease in contamination, the formation of channels, and improved bonding of cement. Long-term wellbore integrity will be improved and environmental and safety issues such as leaks from the formation and Sustained Casing Pressure (SCP) will be mitigated. The enhanced integrity of the cement will not only save operators from costly remedial work and additional rig time, but also increase productivity as well as reduce environmental and safety risks.

 

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Paleozoic Shale-Gas Resources of the Colorado Plateau and Eastern Great Basin, Utah: Multiple Frontier Exploration Opportunities

2007 Unconventional Resources

Project Number: 07122-45 Project Status: completed
Start Date: Aug. 6, 2008 End Date: May 1, 2012
RPSEA PM: Charlotte Schroeder Principal Investigator: Thomas Chidsey
Subcontractor: Utah Geological Survey
Project Objectives:

The study will provide basin specific analyses of shale-gas reservoir properties, as has been done for shale-gas reservoirs elsewhere in the U.S., to develop the best local completion practices that can be applied to the emerging Manning Canyon, Delle Phosphatic, and Paradox frontier gas shales.

 

NOTE: Appendices to Final Report listed below, "Paleozoic Shale-Gas Resources of the Colorado Plateau and Eastern Great Basin, Utah: Multiple Frontier Exploration Opportunities, 11/13" can be viewed HERE.

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