A significant technological advance in the treatment of shale gas wastewater was introduced Tuesday at a ceremony near Fort Worth, Texas.
Fountain Quail Water Management, a wholly owned subsidiary of Calgary-based Aqua-Pure Ventures, unveiled its ROVER System, the latest addition to its industry-leading line of oil and gas field water treatment solutions. The ROVER mobile clarifier package is a rugged, durable in-field technology designed for primary treatment of shale gas flowback at or near the source. The self-contained system, which can treat up to 10,000 barrels of flowback and produced water per day, addresses some of the most pressing challenges faced by operators in shale gas plays across North America.
"The ROVER System is an ideal solution for natural gas producers looking to reduce their costs of water sourcing, storage, disposal and transportation," said Richard Magnus, Chairman of Aqua-Pure Ventures. "We believe this technology, which enables producers to recycle water on-demand near the wellhead, will quickly become a widely accepted best practice in our industry."
Painstakingly tested, refined and proven in conjunction with a major producer in the Barnett Shale formation, the system removes suspended solids and soluble organics from shale gas wastewater and returns clean brine that can be blended for re-use as hydraulic fracturing (or "frac") fluid.
"What we've achieved with the ROVER is a repackaging of the technology we've successfully deployed in shale plays across the continent. The mobile configuration is suitable for virtually any drilling location," explained Magnus. "Best of all, the system allows operators to lower their water management costs while reducing the environmental impact of their operations. It's an economic, environmental and public relations win."
The ROVER System consists of a low-profile clarification trailer and an auxiliary support trailer. Flowback is pumped from the source (e.g., frac tank, pit) into the unit. Suspended solids and organics are separated from the solution using clarification and an adjustable chemical system that addresses the constant variability of shale water. Solids settle into a collection tank where they are de-watered while clean brine is pumped out of the system to a designated location specified by the customer. The clean brine may be used for a broad range of drilling operations.
Since 2004, Fountain Quail has developed and refined its industry-leading technology for recycling flowback and produced water in North Texas' Barnett Shale. During that time, the company's fixed pre-treatment system (ROVER's predecessor) and NOMAD evaporator units have recycled more than 800 million gallons of shale gas wastewater. This water would have otherwise been injected into deep saltwater disposal wells and permanently removed from the hydrological cycle.
Fountain Quail is currently operating in the Marcellus, Barnett and Eagle Ford Shales, and has begun construction of its next treatment facility in a new shale play.
A ROVER specification sheet and video of the ROVER in action, following shale wastewater as it arrives from the wellhead, travels through the ROVER System and is converted into clean brine for re-use, is available here: www.fountainquail.com/rover/rover.html.
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