Skimmer Capacity for Viscous Oil
- Vidar W. Moxness (Norwegian University of Science and Technology) | Knut Gåseidnes (Reninor) | Harald A. Asheim (Norwegian University of Science and Technology)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- SPE Journal
- Publication Date
- March 2011
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 155 - 161
- 2011. Society of Petroleum Engineers
- 6.5.5 Oil and Chemical Spills, 5.3.2 Multiphase Flow
- experimental, pollution control, segregated flow, oil spill, skimmer
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- 336 since 2007
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When a skimmer removes oil locally, oil floating further away will flow toward it. The maximum flow rate toward the skimmer defines its natural capacity. Traditional skimmer-capacity modeling considers flow driven by height potential and resisted by inertial forces but neglects viscosity. On the basis of theory and experiments, this paper claims that high oil viscosity may govern the skimmer capacity.
It is shown that viscous resistance relates to a dimensionless quantity called the Goose number, representing the ratio of inertial to viscous forces. At high Goose numbers, viscosity may be neglected. At sufficiently low Goose numbers, viscous resistance dominates. A numerical solution applicable to all Goose numbers has been developed. Analytical formulas for skimmer capacity at high and low Goose numbers are provided.
A scaled laboratory facility was built to investigate the skimming of viscous oil. The measured rates were consistent with the numerical predictions and with the formula for low Goose number. With decreasing viscosity, predictions by the current model converged to traditional formulas that neglect viscosity.
The model quantifies how skimming capacity is affected by size and by properties of the oil spill and skimmer geometry and submergence. This may enable more rational skimmer design and operation, and even optimization.
|File Size||610 KB||Number of Pages||7|
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