ChemFlow – The R&D project enabling subsea tiebacks with complex fluid chemistry

Most petroleum production systems deliver fluids with complex physical chemistry. The presence of chemicals can change the flow behaviour drastically, potentially causing severe problems such as flow instabilities, poor separation, foaming, and thus production loss.

The Oil and Gas industry is not equipped to predict problems associated with chemicals and surfactants, as current multiphase flow models can only deal with “ideal” fluid systems. The consequence is that decisions regarding design and operation of petroleum production systems using long tie-backs are based on incomplete information and are suboptimal from both an economic and environmental viewpoint.

The ChemFlow project aims to develop new models in LedaFlow for accurate prediction of the properties of fluids with complex chemistry. It is believed that the planned innovations will be important for profitable development of petroleum production systems with reduced CO2 footprint and minimum use of chemicals. ChemFlow contributes to tieback solutions that can play a key role for Norway’s ability to meet emission targets while maintaining a competitive industry. Furthermore, export of the technology can have a significant impact on the environmental footprint from global oil and gas industry.

Read more about ChemFlow on our “Selected R&D projects” page and on SINTEF’s website.