Drag reducing agents (DRA) have been applied to pipelines since they were first commercialized by Conoco, Inc. in 1979, and have proven to be a reliable tool for the pipeline industry. Over the past 40 years, adoption of DRA has been widespread across the globe, in a broad range of climates and in a variety of hydrocarbon fluids.

DRA are valuable tools as they can reliably provide flexibility in the operation of a pipeline. Because DRA can be applied over a range of dosage levels in the pipeline, they offer a range of options in terms of operating points at higher flow rates or lower pressures. DRA can be used to substantially increase flow rate in a capacity limited pipeline, or maintain flow rate in a derated line. They can also be used for energy savings, bypassing pump stations. DRA can bring substantial value to pipeline operations through aversion of flow loss, and through minimizing capital and energy costs.

The latest generation of DRA have demonstrated very high performance potential in terms of drag reduction performance and supply logistics. New pipelines are increasingly considering DRA usage and flexibility during the design stage, which can minimize capital and operating costs.

You can access this article if you purchase or spend a download.