Following an extensive evaluation period, BP has chosen the VIEC (Vessel Internal Electrostatic Coalescer) technology from Aibel to improve the oil and water separation process on their Schiehallion FPSO (Floating Production Storage Offloading). Two VIEC walls will be delivered by the end of April and will be installed in the first stage separator of separator train A (one of two) during a shutdown scheduled for July 2008.
Since start-up in 1998, the BP-operated Schiehallion FPSO has been experiencing problems during the separation stage due to stabile emulsions that have caused restrictions to production. Behind the decision to deploy VIEC, in addition to a FEED study conducted by the Wood Group, was testing of actual oil from the field and a CFD (Computational Fluid Dynamics) study conducted by Aibel.
This is Aibel's fifteenth order for its successful VIEC technology. The company's president and CEO, R. Rasmus Sunde comments: "This contract again marks the growing reputation of our VIEC technology in the market. Operators are increasingly experiencing its ability to improve the separation of heavy oil, breaking down possible emulsions and thereby reducing the amount of chemicals needed while improving process control." All VIEC orders to date have been delivered on time and with good margins and is itself under constant improvement.
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