Norway-based DNV GL has suggested a new concept that combines floating wind turbines with water injection technology to achieve cost-effective enhanced oil recovery (EOR) projects at mature offshore fields.
DNV's initial studies have revealed that the move will reduce the cost of water injection, avoid costly modifications and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
The company is now inviting industries from both the wind power and oil and gas industries to take part in a joint industry project (JIP), known as WIN WIN - WINd powered Water Injection.
DNV said that its new concept will integrate the compressor and water treatment equipment into the sub-structure of a floating wind turbine.
The turbine will produce power that can be applied for several water injection technologies ranging from raw seawater to low-salinity water injection through a reverse osmosis process.
DNV said that a wind-powered water injection system could decrease both capital expenditure and operational expenditure and drive innovation of new technology.
Installation of the system could reduce the installation time, while it would also be easily relocated after the closure of a well or field.
DNV service line leader - offshore renewable energy and sponsor of the initiative Johan Sandberg said the combination of the two technologies can open up an era of synergies and mutual benefit for both oil & gas and wind energy sectors.
"I see this as a very important part of the oil and gas industry's work to reduce cost and with less emissions as a positive effect," Sandberg said.
DNV GL Oil & Gas' subsea business development leader Christian Markussen said, "Our studies show that such a stand-alone system can quickly become cost competitive to traditional solutions for injection wells far from the platform, and even more when one considers the retrofitting water injection equipment into an existing facility and cope with the disruptions that this modification can have on production."
Markussen said, "Operators can obtain a new and cost-efficient way to develop marginal reservoirs and enhance production in mature fields.
"The financial benefits will vary depending on several factors, such as the reservoir characteristics and step-out distance from the production well. Traditional injection systems normally have a significant CAPEX investment, CO2 tax, and exposure to fuel costs, and hence provide a substantial incentive for assessing alternative solutions."
Image: DNV GL unveils new EOR concept. Photo: courtesy of DNV GL.