One-of-a-kind facility simulates real-world conditions for oil and gas research

One-of-a-kind facility simulates real-world conditions for oil and gas research
The high-pressure flow loop

Specialists at TWI have designed and commissioned a high-pressure flow loop that enables a greater range of tests to be carried out in an environment representative of field conditions.

This unique facility allows the circulation of ISO 23936-1:2009 sour fluids containing heptane, cyclohexane, toluene, carbon dioxide, hydrogen sulphide, methane and water at pressures up to 89barg and temperatures up to 130°C. An important feature of the test rig is the ability to conduct experiments under realistic field conditions in terms of flow and mass transport.

During the operation of the rig, the fluid is conditioned in the bypass loop. This fluid mixture can then be pumped through a pipe section or other component under test and the temperature, pressure and flow rate monitored remotely.

Currently the rig is being used to test polymer-lined steel section for a joint industry project: ‘Service performance and life prediction of polymer-lined steel pipe – “polymer-lined pipe and OCTG”’. More information on this project can be found on the project page on the TWI website.

Following completion of this work, TWI’s Members will have the opportunity to use this facility for other applications, such as conditioning of sections of fibre-reinforced composites, sealing assemblies and exposure testing of electronic components.

TWI’s established facilities for permeation monitoring of gas and liquid phases, along with rapid gas decompression and fluid sampling facilities, can be used to enhance these experiments.

More information about our work in this area can be found on the Environmental testing of polymers page.

To find out more about the high-pressure flow loop and discuss other potential applications, contact us.