Low salinity water floods and chemical enhanced oil recovery (CEOR) injection (Alkali, Surfactant and Polymer) are two technologies which have been applied onshore but are now being studied for use in new and existing offshore field developments. Their application offshore introduces several issues, which can significantly affect the technical feasibility and commercial viability of the project:
For "Greenfield" and "Brownfield" projects the most suitable location of the CEOR facilities to minimize additional field infrastructure costs,
For "Brownfield" projects the most suitable location of the CEOR facilities to optimize logistics, maximize safety, and minimize the impact on ongoing production operations, during both the construction and operations phases,
The most suitable time in the field development schedule to install the CEOR facilities to maximize the availability of reservoir data and to minimize the initial platform costs.
The results presented in this paper are generic but they provide a basis for further study of the application of a dedicated desalination / CEOR vessel using specific field information. A work sheet has been provided in the paper identifying the most likely design concept(s) of a dedicated CEOR unit for a range of different field location parameters.
In many cases the lowest risk and most cost efficient design is to locate the desalination / CEOR facilities on a separate vessel. This paper addresses the comparison of these issues in a qualitative manner for different design scenarios. The concept selection comparison is based upon engineering studies and typical offshore industry cost metrics.
This paper presents a basis for considering a dedicated CEOR vessel for offshore projects. This is a novel concept and by initiating further detailed analysis for specific field developments this paper could provide the impetus for the recovery of a significant amount of additional offshore field reserves.