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Natural Gas Processing

Gas Quality from reservoir to market

Dr. Stathis Skouras, Gas Processing and LNG


RDI Centre Trondheim, Statoil, Norway
Schedule
Tuesday 1/12/2015:
09.45 11.30: Lecture - Natural Gas Processing
14.00 17.00: Available for questions/discussion at TTPL

Wednesday 2/2/2015
14.00 17.00: Available for questions/discussion at TTPL

Thursday 3/12/2015
11.45 14.30: Lecture - Azeotropic distillation methods
15.00 17.00: Available for questions/discussion at TTPL

Friday 4/12/2015
13:30 15.00: Available for questions/discussion at TTPL

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Outline
Introduction
Statoil
Natural Gas
Gas Quality in the Value Chain

Natural Gas Processing


Water dew point
Acid and sour gas removal
H2S and mercury removal (trace components)
Hydrocarbon dew point
Examples from real plants
Future processing Subsea factory

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Statoils natural gas business

A major gas player second largest supplier to Europe


Supplying gas to UK, Germany, The Netherlands, Belgium, France, Italy and Spain
Developing international gas value chains in the US and the Caspian region
Holds a 20% share in the Trans Adriatic Pipeline (TAP) project. TAP will start in
Greece, cross Albania and the Adriatic Sea and come ashore in southern Italy

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What is natural gas?
Components
Mainly methane, ethane, propane and
butanes
Small amounts of pentane (C5) and heavier
components (C6+)
Acid/sour gases such as CO2 and H2S
Inerts such as nitrogen (N2)
Trace components such as mercury (Hg)
and sulphur compounds (S)
Water (vapour)

1 Sm3 = 1 m3 @ 15C and 1 atm


1 Sm3 770 gr
1 kmol = 23.64 Sm3
Price 0.20 /Sm3 (EU)

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Natural gas compositions (typical values)

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Natural Gas Terminology
Rich Gas: Rich in heavy components.
Further processing required
Sales gas (dry gas): Ready for sale to
the market
Liquified Natural Gas (LNG): -162C @
1 bar
Natural Gas Liquids (NGL): Ethane and
heavier HC (C2+)
Naphtha: Rest of the NGL (C5+)
Condensate: Heavier liquids from
integrated gas/oil production (C6+)

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Natural gas transport

Pipeline gas Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG)

Pressure: 250 - 50 bar Pressure: atmospheric


Temperature: ambient temperature Temperature: -162C (at boiling point)

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Norwegian Gas
Transport Network
Complex system
8 000km of pipelines

Production fields (offshore Norway)


Transportation pipelines
Rich gas
Sales gas
Oil/Condensate
Gas processing plants (onshore Norway)
Receiving terminals (continental Europe)

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Upstream
Subsea and wells
Gas Value Chain
Upstream
Subsurface
Offshore processes
(reservoir, production
and wells, flow
assurance)

Midstream Topside Facilities


(processing, prepare
Onshore processes for transport)

Gas Processing
(processing, extracting high added value products)
Downstream
Receiving terminals

Storage, Metering and Distribution

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Gas Quality
Scientific field dealing with the compositions,
the physical properties and the
specifications of natural gas

Why gas quality?


Ensure unproblematic transport and processing
Prevent ice and gas hydrates
Prevent condensation of hydrocarbon liquids
Prevent corrosion and erosion of equipment
Fulfill commercial requirements
Ensure safe use of gas to end-users

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Gas quality specs along the value chain (1/2)
Specifications for rich gas transport
Offshore processes
Designation and unit Specification
Max operating pressure (barg) 210
Min operating pressure (barg) 112
Max operating temperature (C) 60
Min operating temperature (C) -10
Rich gas
Max cricondenbar pressure (barg) 105 transport
Max cricondentherm temperature (C) 40
Max water dew point (C at 69barg) -18
Max carbon dioxide (mole%) 2 Onshore processes
Max hydrogen sulphide and COS (ppmv) 2
Max O2 (ppmv) 2
Max daily average methanol content (ppmv) 2.5
Max peak methanol content (ppmv) 20
Max daily average glycol content (litres/MSm3) 8

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Gas quality specs along the value chain (2/2)
Specifications for sales (dry) gas transport Onshore processes

Designation and unit Specification


Hydrocarbon dew point (C at 50 barg) -10
Water dew point (C at 69 barg) -18
Maximum carbon dioxide (mole%) 2.50
Maximum oxygen (ppmv) 2 Sales (dry) gas
Maximum hydrogen sulphide incl. COS (mg/Nm3) 5 transport

Maximum mercaptans (mg/Nm3) 6.0


Maximum sulphur (mg/Nm3) 30
Gross Calorific Value (MJ/Sm3) 38.1 43.7 Receiving terminals
Gross Calorific Value (MJ/Nm3) 40.2 46.0
Gross Calorific Value (kWh/Nm3) 11.17 12.78
Wobbe Index (MJ/Sm3) 48.3 52.8
Wobbe Index (MJ/Nm3) 51.0 55.7
Wobbe Index (kWh/Nm3) 14.17 15.47

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Natural Gas Processing
Water dew point
Water occurs naturally in the reservoir
Free water phase is removed in 3-phase separators
Water (vapour) is physically dissolved in the natural gas
(in equilibrium)

Water must be removed from the gas to avoid:


Free water in gas pipelines (corrosion)
Ice/hydrate formation (plugging of equipment and pipes)

Water removal processes:


Condensation (cooling and separation)
Absorption by glycol processes (moderate dew-pointing)
Adsorption on solids (severe dew-pointing)

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Water dew point specifications
Offshore processes Onshore processes

Transport Process
specification: specification:
-18C at 69 barg 0.1 to 1 ppmv

(20-30 ppm)

Process needed:
Process needed:
Adsorption on
Glycol absorption
solids
process

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Water removal offshore - Glycol absorption (physical)
Counter-current mixing with tri-ethylene glycol (TEG)
Water
Meets pipeline water dew point specifications (-18C at 69 barg) vapour

Dry natural gas P=1bar


T=200C
Lean TEG Flash drum
P=70 bar
T=30C Glycol
Filters Regenerator

Glycol
Contactor

Wet natural Surge drum


gas Pump
LT HX HT HX
Cooler

Rich TEG
Glycol/condensate
separator
Filter

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Water removal onshore - Adsorption on solids
Adsorption in to a solid material
Used in deep gas processing at low temperatures
Removal of smaller amounts of water
Extreme dryness, down to 0.1 ppm water
Porous structures with high internal surface area (200
800 m2/g)
Strong affinity for water, 5 25 % by weight
Common adsorbents
Molecular sieve (3A or 4A type) (Zeolite)
Activated alumina (Al2O3)
Silica gel (SiO2)
Regenerative processes

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Water removal by adsorption
Acid/sour gas removal (CO2 and H2S)
Most natural gas contains acid gas
CO2 (acid)
H2S and other sulfur compounds (sour)

Why remove acid gas:


Corrosion induced by acid gas (+ free water)
Freezing of acid gas in process equipment
Sales specifications
Toxicity and reactivity (H2S)

Typical specification for sweetened gas:


CO2 in pipeline gas: <2 - 2.5 mol%
CO2 in LNG: <50 ppmv CO2 (very low because of very low process temperatures)
H2S: a few ppmv

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Acid gas removal (CO2 and H2S) by
absorption (physico-chemical) in amines

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H2S (traces) removal on metal oxide
Acid gas content <1%
Chemical reaction
MeO + H2S MeS + H2O

<0.1ppmv H2S in product gas


Non-regenerative method

Upstream precautions: Downstream effects:


No liquids (free water / condensate) Water
Minimise glycols, amines and particles Dust particles

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Mercury in oil & gas
Occurs naturally in virtually all oil & gas reservoir
Mineral cinnabar (red), HgS, is the main source of
mercury in reservoirs
Concentrations vary from few to hundreds of ppb
Mercury compounds are highly toxic
Mercury is always removed in LNG plants and
sometimes in gas processing - to avoid severe
corrosion of aluminium equipment
Mercury is removed by adsorption on solids

Geologic cinnabar, HgS (red)

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Mercury removal by adsorption on solids
Main removal methods:
Sulfur impregnated activated carbon
Hg + S HgS

Reaction between Hg and a metal sulfide


(typically alumina) forming HgS (Chemisorption)
Hg + MSx MS(X-1) + HgS

<10 ng/Sm3 Hg in product gas (LNG spec.)


Can not be regenerated
Typical intervals for adsorption beds: 4-6 years

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Hydrocarbon dew point - Phase envelope of
natural gas
Dense phase
C Critical point

Cricondenbar N Cricondenbar

M Cricondentherm

Liquid Cricondentherm

Vapor + liquid
The phase envelope is ONLY
Gas a function of COMPOSITION

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Effect of composition on phase envelopes
Effect of heavy ends (C7+)

Manipulate phase envelope by


removing NGL or heavy ends (C7+)

Source: A. M. Elsharkawy / Fluid Phase Equilibria 193 (2002) 147-165

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Practical importance of phase envelopes
Rich gas pipeline (ab)
Gas transport in pipelines a - Cricondenbar specification
- Transport at high pressures
b - No liquid formation above
cricondenbar (dense phase)
- Manipulate phase envelope
by removing NGL to reach a
cricondenbar spec.
a
Sales gas pipeline (ab):
- Cricondentherm spec
b
- Transport at intermediate/low
pressures
- No liquid formation above
cricondentherm (gas phase)
- Manipulate phase envelope by
removing NGL to reach a
cricondentherm spec.

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Manipulation of phase envelopes along the Value Chain-
HC dew point control

Source: A.O. Fredheim, E. Solbraa, Compendium Industrial Processes, TEP4185 NTNU

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HC dew point processes (NGL recovery)

Joule-Thompson valve Expander process S2

S2

S1

PRODUCT-FLAS

GAS S1 GAS EX1

VALVE
PRODUCT-FLAS S3

FEED-FL ASH FEED-FL ASH


S3

FEED
FEED

LIQUID

LIQUID

JT-valve (isenthalpic)
Expander process (isentropic) creates shaft work -
achieves lower temperatures (deeper NGL extraction)
Expander combined with a compressor (energy recovery)

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HC dew point processes (NGL recovery)
Pre-cooling and expansion

Heat integration between feed and Precooling with sea


product (gas/gas HX) water or extra cooling
(refrigeration cycle)

S2 S2

S1 S1
S3

PRODUCT-FLAS PRODUCT-FLAS

S4 EX1 EX1
S5 S4

E1 E1
S3 E2
S5
GAS S7
GAS

FEED-FL ASH
FEED-FL ASH

FEED
FEED

LIQUID LIQUID

Deeper NGL extraction


More robust scheme

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NGL fractionation
NGL fractionation in series of distillation columns
Make high added value products (C2, C3, C4, C5+)
Propane
4 3
C2+ from
1 2
NGL recovery
Feed
C2
Sea
water
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6
7
Steam
8 C3 Sea
5 water
De-etanizer Sea
water

Steam
iC4

De-propanizer

Steam
Steam nC4
Butane
C5+ splitter
De-butanizer

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Examples from real plants
Snhvit

Offshore processing: sgard B Melkya

Norne

sgard Heidrun
Kristin

TS Haltenpipe
Ormen Lange Tjeldbergodden
Statfjord
Nyhamna
Troll

Frigg Kollsnes

Vesterled
Sleipner Krst

St Fergus
Ekofisk Europipe II
Europipe I
Langeled
Zeepipe I Norpipe

Franpipe
Easington
Emden
Zeebrugge
Dunkerque

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sgard B Process
CO2/H2S
removal HC dew point
Water dew point
RICH GAS
EXPORT

FEED (3-phase)
Inlet separation

Oil stabilization

STABILISED
OIL

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Snhvit

Example onshore processing: Melkya

Krst plant
Norne

sgard Heidrun
Kristin

TS Haltenpipe
Ormen Lange Tjeldbergodden
Statfjord
Nyhamna
Troll

Frigg Kollsnes

Vesterled
Sleipner Krst

St Fergus
Ekofisk Europipe II
Europipe I
Langeled
Zeepipe I Norpipe

Franpipe
Easington
Emden
Zeebrugge
Dunkerque

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Krst plant: Feed pretreatment
H2S
removal
Mercury
removal

Water dew point


Krst plant: HC dew point control unit (DPCU)
COOLING NGL RECOVERY
Gas/Gas HX LT separator De-C1
JT-
column
valves

Turbo-expander

Expansion/compression C2+ to NGL


fractionation

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Future Oil & Gas Production

The Statoil Subsea Factory Oil export

Sea water injection Oil storage Oil pump


template with pumping Gas export

Produced water Gas compression


Power distribution
injection template and control

Gas, oil, produced


water separation
Manifold
Production
Produced water template
injection pump
Production
template

ROV
intervention

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Thank you

Presenters name: Dr. Stathis Skouras


Presenters title: Principal Researcher
efss@statoil.com, tel: +47 97 69 59 62
www.statoil.com

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