Due to the constant need of improving flow, pressure and pipeline throughput for single phase flow in fluid pipelines, and due to extensive injection of DRA into pipelines, whether to supply an increased demand of customers or uprate an overall throughput of a pipeline system, a need to find ways to optimize the effect of DRA injection on the flow rate and pressure of pipelines has become essential in the pipeline industry.
This study looked into the effect of drag reducing agents on the flow rate and pressure of single phase flow in fluid pipelines. The methodology starts with selecting a pipeline network to be case-studied and then utilizing an advanced tool that can perform hydraulic pipeline calculations to simulate various cases. Afterwards, results are evaluated, analyzed, and discussed to make sure that they match with real, live data. To optimize, a simulation tool named SPS is used to simulate cases where effect of DRA on the flow rate and pressure is improved.
Performing several investigations on how to optimize the effect of DRA, a number of recommendations has been made to modify several factors that eventually lead to optimization of the DRA effect. Initially, the definition and characteristics of DRAs have been clarified. Additionally, the mechanics behind drag reduction have been understood and the effect of DRAs on the flow rate and pressure of pipelines, once injected, has been understood.
Factors such as location of DRA injection, DRA type vs. %Dr, and DRA concentration have been proven to be effective in optimizing the effect of DRA based on the results of the simulated cases. Savings reaching up to 4 Million US$ on one type of polymeric DRA injection were the results of tuning only one factor contributing to optimization, which is the location of DRA injection.