Classification society DNV GL has urged offshore oil and gas operators to use floating wind turbines to power water injection for oil recovery, which is one step closer to becoming a technically viable and commercially deployable system.
The classification society said that the WIN WIN technology (WINd-powered Water INjection) was conceived in 2013 by DNV GL and was ready for prototype development after two joint industry projects shown the concept to be technically feasible.
According to the company, water injection is an effective tool in exploiting oil reserves but the process is often inhibited by the high costs associated with large gas or diesel generators and complicated subsea infrastructure.
“By using a floating wind turbine, the WIN WIN concept allows the injection system to operate independently, eliminating the need of long flowlines from the platform,” DNV GL said.
The first phase of researching the WIN WIN concept explored the techno-economic feasibility of the wind-powered water injection, while, the recently-completed second stage involved advanced proof-of-concept lab tests.
President and CEO of DNV GL, Remi Eriksen said: “Wind power working for oil and gas, and oil and gas working for wind power, not only captures the imagination in these times of transition but makes a lot of business sense.”
Project director, Johan Sandberg, added: “From the start, this project has always had a commercial focus. Potentially substantial rewards await a first mover willing to build a prototype to increase technology readiness and optimize system integration. With ‘WIN WIN, the power is supplied in situ at a potentially much lower cost, with increased flexibility, and without emissions.”
In the latest round of research, DNV GL conducted a joint industry project with funding provided by ExxonMobil and Vår Energi.
Jayme Meier, Vice-President, ExxonMobil Upstream Research Company, says, “The completion of phase 2 of the WIN WIN JIP drives us one step closer to a technically viable and commercially deployable system.”
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