Oil Production Water Services and Solutions

Overview

Water treatment systems and injection equipment have been installed on offshore production facilities since the 1970s to inject filtered seawater into reservoirs for pressure maintenance and waterflooding for improved oil recovery (IOR).

Water handling and injection is a major operating cost for producers.

Water Standard is a pioneer in the delivery of water treatment and Enhanced Oil Recovery (EOR) solutions.  Water Standard possesses a unique understanding of subsurface oil/water chemistry and has developed state-of-the-art EOR designs and patents for membrane configurations and control systems. These proprietary designs optimize and maintain the required reservoir-specific product water chemistry, thereby maximizing the possibility of additional oil recovery.

Water Standard has the flexibility to meet the full-cycle water treatment needs of the offshore energy sector, either by providing skid-mounted units or dedicated, independent floating facilities.

Offshore, topsides treatment systems are space and weight-intensive and occupy valuable platform footprint. The full potential of water injection has therefore been limited by footprint and weight considerations, operability concerns, capital and operating cost impacts, and compliance with environmental requirements.

Conventional Waterflood  (IOR)

The majority of water use in oil and gas operations is currently related to waterflooding into reservoir formations to restore pressure and improve oil displacement or fluid flow in the reservoir. The general term, Improved Oil Recovery (IOR), is used to describe methods aimed at improving recovery, and includes both secondary and tertiary recovery techniques.  The term Enhanced Oil Recovery (EOR) is a subset of IOR, and includes the more sophisticated tertiary methods to increase recovery of oil, ranging from low-salinity waterflooding, water-based chemical and microbial injection, thermal methods, and gas injection.

Filtered seawater is commonly used as an injection fluid for conventional waterfloods. However, a common problem in offshore reservoirs which contain a substantial barium or strontium content is scale formation from chemical incompatibility of the injected seawater and the original formation brine. As a result, sulfates are often removed from seawater to prevent scaling and also souring, referred to as the sulfate removal process (SRP). A major challenge with SRP systems offshore is the significant capital investment for platform space and weight, as well as specific operational considerations.

Water Standard provides water treatment solutions to critically important components of the waterflooding process:

  • Seawater flooding filtration
  • Sulfate reduced flooding including filtration and membrane treatment

Water Standard has developed proprietary designs, unique to the industry, that can provide both sulfate reduced and low-salinity water from the same system.

While SRP systems are implemented as preventative measures, low-salinity systems have the added advantage of enhancing oil productivity in some reservoirs. See Low-Salinity EOR Tab for more.

Low-Salinity EOR

A new EOR technique employs the use of low-salinity water injection.  Due to its ability to change wettability characteristics of reservoir rock, low-salinity water can result in more effective oil recovery both in terms of the oil production profile (the rate of oil production) and the ultimate recovered volumes (higher recovery factor). Pilot data for low-salinity water injection shows increases in waterflood efficiency increasing recovery from 2 to 40%, depending upon the reservoir and composition of both the injection and connate water (natural reservoir water).

Using innovative membranes and ion selective systems, Water Standard can optimize water quality cost-effectively, thereby expanding the operator’s ability to enhance recovery.

Water Standard has the unique ability to provide both SRP and low-salinity EOR services from the system using proprietary designs.

Chemical EOR

Chemical EOR methods (utilizing Alkaline, Surfactant, Polymer or a combination) are increasingly being evaluated and piloted. A number of projects are moving toward full field implementation.

Using desalinated, softened, or customized injection water can optimize reservoir oil/water chemistry, a key factor in increasing the oil recovery rate. In addition, by utilizing desalinated water, the quantity of chemicals required for CEOR is significantly reduced, minimizing cost, transportation logistics, and offshore infrastructure. By working with Water Standard’s water treatment specialists, oil and gas companies can modify and experiment with water chemistry specifications once the reservoir response has been evaluated. In addition, vessel mobility facilitates the ability to pilot CEOR in various fields where there are space constraints.

Water Standard is a member of leading CEOR research institutes and its personnel are invited regularly to lecture at academic institutions on on advancements in CEOR technology.

Even in the most challenging environments, Water Standard can provide turnkey CEOR solutions including logistics and chemical handling, mixing, and storage.

Water Standard offers produced water treatment including breaking emulsified oil streams from CEOR applications. Working with an oil and gas client, Water Standard can also work  toward minimizing the potential of producing difficult emulsions by optimizing injection water chemistry as well as ASP chemicals and dosing.

Produced Water Treatment

The oil and gas sector has substantial wastewater treatment needs, related to the produced water brought to the surface along with oil or natural gas. Growing environmental restrictions is driving treatment and reinjection of produced water.

As fields age,  the amount of water volume produced per oil volume increases.  Therefore, the economics are one of diminishing return as less oil revenue is generated and more operating costs are incurred from increased water treatment needs.

Water Standard can provide produced water solutions for flowback of CEOR waterflood or traditional waterfloods.

Using state of the art technology from a broad spectrum of suppliers, Water Standard can treat produced water to meet environmental discharge standards or for reuse for EOR/CEOR injection.

Additional Services

Water Standard has the ability to provide the following additional water treatment services from the same facility.

 

  • Conditioning and Treatment of Drilling Muds: Conditioning and re-conditioning of water-based drilling muds offshore, eliminating the need for onshore treatment during field development
  • Water for Crude Desalting: Desalinated water for desalting of crude
  • Process Water: Process water supply for use in drilling operations or for potable water and sanitary purposes
  • Slop Water Treatment: Slop mud and slop water treatment, and polishing or conditioning of recovered water, for reinjection, discharge or on-site reuse

Water Standard also offers ancillary field services including:

  • Storage: Excess storage capacity for chemicals or other materials, enabling further optimization of platform or facility footprint
  • Emergency evacuation: Emergency evacuation services for personnel on the client’s facility, due to rapid disconnect capability in the event of an emergency or extreme weather conditions
  • Additional accommodations: Housing for additional crew required for platform operations
  • Excess power: Excess power to rigs and subsea structures