In this study, commonly used two-phase flow pressure prediction correlations and mechanistic models for pipelines in petroleum industry are used to simulate fluid flow in a hilly terrain pipeline. Simulation results are evaluated against experimental data. The experimental data were obtained from a published paper.
Hilly terrain pipelines are often encountered in oil and gas transportation. During pipeline design and simulation, experimental data are usually unavailable to calibrate against correlations or mechanistic models. In this situation, it is difficult to determine which correlation or model to use in predicting pressure drop in hilly terrain pipes due to the complexity of flow, since in a hilly terrain pipeline, fluid flow can be uphill, downhill and horizontal.
Pressure, temperature and rate measurements as well as fluid properties were given for a 2.8 mile long hilly terrain pipeline with 12-inch and 16-inch diameters. Pressure drops obtained from correlations and mechanistic models were compared with pressure measurements. Correlations and mechanistic models evaluated in this study include Beggs-Brill, Dukler, Dukler- Eaton-Flanigan, Dukler-Flanigan, Eaton, Eaton-Flanigan and Xiao and Ansari mechanistic models.
The results of this study can be used as guidelines for choosing two-phase flow pressure prediction correlations and mechanistic models in designing and analyzing hilly terrain pipelines.