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Title: Experimental and simulation studies on performance of a compact gas/liquid separation system
Author: Zhou, Ying Hui
Awarding Body: Cranfield University
Current Institution: Cranfield University
Date of Award: 2013
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The need of exploiting the offshore oil reserves and reducing the equipment costs becomes the motivation for developing new compact separation techniques. In the past years, the development of compact separators has almost solely focused on the cyclonic type separators made of pipes, because of their simple construction, relatively low cost of manufacturing and being able to withstand high pressures. Considerable effort has been put into the separator test program and qualification, and consequently notable advances in the compact separation technique have been made. However the application has been held back due to lacking of reliable predicting and design tools. The objectives of this study were threefold. Firstly, an experimental study was carried out aiming at understanding the separation process and flow behaviours in a compact separator, named Pipe-SEP, operating at high inlet gas volume fraction (GVF). Secondly it is to gain insight of the gas and liquid droplet flow in the compact separator by means of Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) simulations. Last but not least, the understanding and insight gained above were used to develop a comprehensive performance predictive model, based on which, a reliable optimizing design procedure is suggested. An experimental study was carried out to test a 150-mm Pipe-SEP prototype with a water-air mixture. Three distinct flow regimes inside the Pipe-SEP were identified, namely swirled, agitated, and gas blow-by. The transition of the flow regimes was found to be affected by inlet flow characteristics, mixture properties, geometry of the separator, and downstream conditions. A predictive model capable of predicting the transition of flow regimes and the separation efficiency was developed. A comparison between the predicted result and experiment data demonstrated that the model could serve as a design tool to support decision-making in early design stages ... [cont.].
Supervisor: Cao, Yi Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available