The oil and gas industry continues to explore new options for more effective recovery, the newest of which are jet pump deployments within the Arctic. The Arctic represents some major challenges for those within the oil and gas industry, due to the temperature extremes involved as well as the remote nature of the environment. Not only do drillers within the Arctic need to contend with the unfavorable temperatures, but they also need to be able to quickly react to emergencies and maintain the best in safety and containment standards. Jet pumps may create a faster, easier way to recover oil without introducing any safety hazards or regulatory concerns.
The Challenges of Pumping Oil in the Arctic
There are many alternative methods that have been attempted within the Arctic, ranging from rod pumping to gas lifts. All of them come with their own drawbacks. Rod pumping requires a large amount of deck space and frequent maintenance, gas lifting is extremely expensive to complete, and electric submersible pumps would get clogged with sand and need repeated repairs. Many of the methods of pumping falter due to maintenance and repair issues; because it is so physically difficult to pump viscous and cold fluids upwards, the machinery tends to break. Every time machinery breaks and needs to be repaired and maintained, it’s not only a costly enterprise, but potentially a safety hazard. Ideally, the best pumping methods would operate smoothly with basic routine maintenance.
The Benefits of Jet Pumping Systems
Jet pumping systems are designed to pressurize oil and water and send it downwards, through the use of a pumping system. This fluid creates a low pressure system which pulls the fluid inside of the reservoir upwards into the pump. Jet pumping systems are ideal because there are no moving parts. The pump, located at the surface, simply needs to push fluids down. Once that is achieved, vacuum pressure and physics complete the rest of the extraction. Jet pumps do not frequently break down and are extremely resilient. They are also fairly inexpensive to operate because the technology involved is so simple. One jet pump system has been able to operate for over five years without any incidents.
Despite the simplicity of the jet pumping system, a significant amount of fine-tuning was involved in creating a system that operated effectively. Due to the necessary vacuum required and the mixed flows between the extracted materials and the well fluids, the ideal size of the jet pump system had to be developed. A property sized jet pump is able to more effectively recover fluids faster. These jet pumps are able to produce up to 700 bbl/d of fluid.
Jet pumping systems still have yet to enter into widespread use even throughout the Arctic, though one installation has produced more than 1 MMbbl total since it has been installed. Now that the concept has been proven, it’s likely that more jet pumps will be installed and become active in areas that have difficult environments and require reliable equipment. With the ability to operate for over half a decade without incident, jet pumps will not only improve production and revenue but also safety.
Of course, for most oil and gas drillers, more conventional equipment is necessary. Tiger General LLC has been offering premium and reliable swabbing rigs, vacuum water trucks, dump trucks, and chemical treatment and well treatment trucks since 1925 for those within the oil and gas industry. Contact Tiger General LLC today to learn more about their inventory of trucks, rigs, and trailers.