ABSTRACT:

The paper presents one-dimensional transient mathematical model of thermal oil-water two-phase emulsion flows in pipes. The set of mass, momentum and enthalpy conservation equations are solved for the continuous fluid and droplet phases. Two correlations, which describe the friction between the continuous fluid phase and the wall, are tested in the paper. The interaction between droplets and the continuous fluid phase is modeled by using the aerodynamic drag force. The Beal, the Beggs and Robinson, and the Glaso empirical viscosity correlations are analyzed in the paper. Applicability of those correlations is tested for the case of medium oil at low temperatures. The proposed mathematical model is validated on the experimental measurements of pressure losses in water-in-oil emulsion flows in horizontal pipe. Numerical analysis on single- and two-phase oil-water flows in a pipe is presented in the paper. The continuous oil flow having water droplets is analyzed. Predictions show good agreement with the experimental data if the water fraction is less than 10%. Disagreement between simulations and measurements is increased if the water fraction is larger than 10%. The influence of the temperature on two-phase flow behavior is analyzed.

INTRODUCTION

A development of new technologies on heavy oil production requires more intensive oil transmission from one place to another. The heavy oil is usually transported through the pipeline by mixing with the water in order to reduce the overall pressure losses. Multiphase oil-water flows in pipes is much more complex process compared to single phase flows due to phases interaction and re-distribution within the crosssectional area of the pipeline. Experimental studies show that the pressure drop in oil-water two-phase emulsion flow is usually less comparing to single phase water or single phase oil flows. It is difficult to estimate the pressure drop at multiphase flow regime.

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