In the petroleum industry, during the production and transportation of oil, multiphase flow occurs, due to the usual mixture of the crude oil, water and gas. This type of flow can be simplified, for study purposes, as a two-phase one, in which the gas is one phase, and a mixture of oil and water is the other. Separation of gaseous and liquid phases at the wellhead level is done by a separator and has innumerous advantages, including avoiding or at least reducing typical problems of multiphase flows such as intermittent flow, severe slugging and hydrates deposition. Another advantage is to increase the efficiency of the submersible centrifugal pumps or other artificial lift process used. A recurrent problem found in exploration and production of oil and gas is the range of the fluid viscosities encountered during exploration and extraction of petroleum, which can greatly vary with the temperature or the composition of the oil being extracted. Thus, it is necessary to understand how this parameter affects the performance of the equipment used. In addition, installation and maintenance of separators are hampered by the large size of this type of equipment. Therefore, a prior distribution system is here proposed, aiming to distribute the flow in more than one branch, in order to decrease the general size of the separation equipment needed, while maintaining the flow rate and separation efficiency. This distribution system has a cyclonic chamber, in which the flow enters through two nozzles tangentially oriented with the wall of the chamber, which performs a pre-separation due to the centrifugal field, and divides the flow into four outlets. This work presents a numerical study on the height influence of the cyclonic chamber in a distribution system. The transient beginning of the flow is analyzed, with the stability of the film being study. This work is focused on the behavior of the liquid phase in this proposed distribution system, so that only single-phase liquid flow at the inlet of the distribution system is considered. A validation was done through comparison with experimental data obtained in a test rig, in which was used one wire mesh sensor with 12 wires in order to evaluate the thickness of the liquid film over time. In addition, different heights and viscosities are studied in order to evaluate their influence on the flow. The parameters investigated are the film thickness, velocity and turbulence kinetic energy fields and flow rates at the outlets, focusing on the stability of the film and the transient effects associated with the beginning of the flow. In order to perform this study, the commercial software ANSYS-CFX 15.0 was used, with a hybrid mesh, for four different heights and two inlet velocities.
- Fluids Engineering Division
Numerical Study of Transient Flow and the Influence of Height and Viscosity in a Cyclonic Chamber in a Distribution System
Rodrigues, CC, Eidt, HK, Dunaiski, R, Ofuchi, CY, Neves, F, Jr., Santos, PHD, & Morales, REM. "Numerical Study of Transient Flow and the Influence of Height and Viscosity in a Cyclonic Chamber in a Distribution System." Proceedings of the ASME 2017 Fluids Engineering Division Summer Meeting. Volume 1B, Symposia: Fluid Measurement and Instrumentation; Fluid Dynamics of Wind Energy; Renewable and Sustainable Energy Conversion; Energy and Process Engineering; Microfluidics and Nanofluidics; Development and Applications in Computational Fluid Dynamics; DNS/LES and Hybrid RANS/LES Methods. Waikoloa, Hawaii, USA. July 30–August 3, 2017. V01BT11A016. ASME. https://doi.org/10.1115/FEDSM2017-69311
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