Water is currently considered to be an important resource in the petroleum industry. From injection water for increased pressure, to produced water for discharge or re-injection (PWRI), there are unique challenges assosiated with this valuable resource: Reservoir souring, sustained injectivity, biofouling as well as identification and verification of suitable technologies to meet increasingly stringent and important regulations from the pollution authorities are just a few of the examples of the challenges to be encountered. Water handling is often a key to efficient oil production. With more than 30 years of experience in the field of water handling for the petroleum industry, Aquateam is able to provide compact and holistic solutions to present and future challenges through our multidisciplinary group of experts.
Aquateam has > 30 years experience in performing ecotoxicological studies and environmental risk assessments of chemicals used in the oil industry, both onshore and offshore. The Norwegian petroleum sector primarily involves discharges into the marine environment, and the Oslo- and Paris Commission (OSPARCOM) has established a harmonized set of marine ecotoxicological tests. This involves the registration of HOCNF (Harmonised Offshore Chemicals Notification Format) and the performance of environmental assessments according to CHARM (Chemical Hazard And Risk Assessment Model). In 1993, Aquateam developed the CHARM-model together with TNO in Holland and is central in its implementation. This has also given Aquateam a solid grounding in ecotoxicological testing and risk based assessments of discharges from industry, including EIF. Aquateam performes technology assessments for BAT as well as comprehensive studies of health and environment related issues for discharges to water and air and also energy use.
As a secondary method of recovery in oilfields, water is treated by removing particles, oxygen and bacteria before injection into the reservoir. The handling of large volumes of water which must maintain a high quality at all times provides a number of challenges:
- maintaining filter efficiency to remove particles
- maintaining control over microbiological growth in the injection water to prevent biofouling and corrosion in pipelines and process equipment
- ensuring high water quality for increased reservoir pressure
Aquateam performs studies of filter efficiency, injectivity, biofouling control and choice of biocides, as well as pipeline studies when water is to be transported over longer distances. From our > 30 years experience in injection water handling, we supply comprehensive solutions for Injection water treatment and monitoring.
Aquateam has established a unique expertise within the assessment of new technologies in the field of water treatment, process control and monitoring within the petroleum sector. Focus has primarily been on the treatment of produced water and injection water onshore and offshore for different types of oil- and gas fields with discharges to sea/other recipients or reinjection in the reservoir for pressure or disposal. The tasks include technology development, testing and documentation on a "bench scale" in Aquateams own laboratory, in pilot- and full scale at customer sites in cooperation with suppliers and operators.
Serving as an independent third party, Aquateam has performed pre-studies, concept studies, process design and qualification studies of new technologies. Projects have also included the determination of inlet water quality as well as requirements for treated water, aiming to establish BAT with regard to health, environment, efficiency, cost (both investment and operation) and durability.
The reservoir is the heart of any oil production and Aquateams expertise has been utilised for concept studies, evaluation of design solutions for injection water for EOR, R&D and laboratory testing. Aquateam regularly perform studies on existing installations with regard to maintaining injectivity. Aquateam has developed its own , reservoir souring model and provide solutions for souring mitigation and increased oil recovery (EOR, MeOR). Aquateam has been involved in several backflow studies for the evaluation of reservoir souring and the effects of souring mitigation and also regularly undertake studies of topsides systems to improve biological control in process equipment and pipelines.
On a global scale, oil fields produce 3 times as much water as oil. While the water becomes an environmental problem if not handled properly, produced water can also be an important resource. The utilization of the produced water is consequently an important decision in oil and gas production. The options are either treatment for discharge to sea/land, produced water re-injection (PWRI) for pressure support or deposition.
The main challenges are most often related to the separation of water from oil, where critical aspects are emulsions, solids, process chemicals, choice of new treatment technologies and injectivity (for PWRI implementation). Over the years, Aquateam has supported the industry through
- Concept studies
- Evaluation of design solutions for water treatment
- R&D and laboratory testing of possible solutions
- Studies of existing installations for
- Separation problems
- Solids generation, sulphide and schmoo production
- Corrosion and microbial influenced corrosion
- Microbial fouling and growth in produced water systems
- Optimalisation of chemical- and pigging regimes
Aquateam is an ideal partner for finding environmentally sound solutions in produced water.
Decommissioning / Platform Closures
The environmental challenges associated with decommissioning of offshore installations and recycling useful materials involves expert knowledge covering a number of fields. Aquateam has been involved in several decommissioning projects including the Brent Spar and the Ekofisk Tank. Our topical experts have, as a result, acquired the necessary insight and understanding for dealing with challenges in decommissioning, including:
- Contaminated ground/sediments
- Spreading ecotoxins to the sea and the water column
- Spreading mineralised heavy metals on and around the installation during removal or from recycled components
Aquateams broad spectrum of knowledge and competence contributes to ensure decommissioning and platform closure occurs in an environmentally sound manner.