Cold Heavy Oil Production is mainly achieved by Progressing Cavity Pumps (PCP) nowadays, thanks to its low CAPEX and OPEX and adaptability to viscous and abrasive fluids. However, for thermal recovery, standard PCP is not adapted, as the elastomer composing the stator, the heart of the pump, can't withstand fluid temperature above 160°C (320F) so far. Innovative research led to the development of an original manufacturing process of a complete metallic pump, avoiding the elastomer weakness. The use of metallic PCP is in an advanced test phase. PCM and TOTAL launched industrial validation tests early 2005 in TOTAL test bench using extra heavy crude with temperatures up to 200°C (390F), pressure up to 75 bars (1090psi) and flowrate up to 260 m3/day (1600bpd) at 350 rpm. The flowrate range will be as high as 1000 m3/day (6300bpd) with new models available later this year. The validation program includes long-time running performance tests to validate its behaviour on abrasion & gas handling. Field tests will be performed before the end of the year. This paper presents the technology and promised performances associated with metal PCP used for heavy oil cold or thermal production.

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