Flow Assurance and Sand Transport in Flowline
The accumulation of sand is a major problem in oil and gas flowline that hampers continuous production.
The group is currently investigating the transport of sand through flowline using computational fluid dynamics and mechanistic modelling technique. The ultimate aim of the on-going research is to propose more accurate flow assurance strategies.
The computational fluid dynamics investigation involves the use of ANSYS Fluent software to model sand transportation in multiphase fluid flow at the bend of horizontal flowline. This entails creation of the computational domain/geometry (fig.3), and adequate mesh generation for the simulation (fig.4).
The modelling covers a number of different bend angles in horizontal flowline, in order to investigate the effect of the degree of angle of bend on flow velocity, pressure drop and sand accumulation at the bend of a horizontal flowline. Roland Tebowei, a research student, is currently working with the supervisory team on this project.
Figure 1: Sand concentration across the vertical central line.
Figure 2: Sand volume fraction