Custody Transfer Measurement on the World Longest Heated and Insulated Pipeline – A Case Study
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The second largest discovery of oil in India estimated 3.6 billion bbls of Oil at Barmer region of Rajasthan, India in 1998 is helping India by reducing dependency on Crude Oil imports. Major challenges arises in system design due to properties of the discovered oil being transported. The viscous oil has an API gravity between 22 & 30 with high wax content of 20-30 wt% and congeals below its pour point of 40-45 ºC with wax appearing temperature (WAT) of 65 ºC. To overcome the challenge of transporting the waxy, high pour point crude company has constructed the world’s longest heated pipeline by using Skin Effect Heat Management technology. The heated and insuleted cross-country pipeline spanning ~680 km was constructed to transport oil from Mangala processing terminal at Barmer in the Thar desert to the refineries on the western coast of India. With the Pipeline infrastructure in place, next big challenge was to identify and determine the best way to measure the crude oil sold to refineries. To overcome the design challenges and meet the objective of obtaining the higest level of measurement performance and repeatability with low pressure drop leading to increased energy savings, and having a long term operating goal of less wear and tear of custody transfer metering systems, a collaborative approach was adopted by to nail down the suitable solution by selecting a leader in flow metering technogies as a technology partner. Available technologies were thoroughly analysed considering no compromises in fiscal measurement performance of the crude oil transaction between us and our customers. After extensive efforts, sizing of individual components, the selection of the proving technique & philosophy in compliance to Industry standards and best in class practises were made. With this approach Custody metering system was designed using Liquid Ultrasonic meters to our requirements and full compliance to API Manual of Petroleum Measurement Standards (MPMS) and additional measures were adopted for mitigating the challenges in fiscal measurement of this waxy and high pour point mangala crude oil.
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