The design of offshore oil-production facilities has evolved throughout the years to cope with increasingly stringent environmental regulations on oily-water discharge. This paper presents the development of technology that oil-producing companies use to clean the produced water associated with crude oil. The early practices for water treatment, the evolution throughout the years of the various treatment approaches, and the prevailing design specifications are reviewed in this paper. State-of-the-art technology, latest design practices, and current industry theories are also presented in this paper, as well as alternate oily-water disposal approaches, latest design practices, and the current approach used to estimate the viscosity of water-oil emulsions, which is a critical design transport parameter.

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