GE has introduced a new water treatment technology, seawater sulfate removal (SWSR) nanofiltration membrane, which removes sulfate from injection water in offshore oil production.
Launched for the upstream oil and gas market, the new SWSR membrane will reduce scale and corrosion in the injection well by eliminating sulfate, which can reduce oil recovery and plug the well.
Said to be an improvement of GE’s DK series nanofiltration membrane, the new SWSR has three-layer membrane design and smooth surface due to which it is resistant to fouling.
According to the company, the SWSR series minimises operating pressures by providing a transmission of sodium chloride into the permeate water and offers a physical barrier for any suspended particles.
The particles include bacteria, pyrogens and colloids.
The new membrane will help prevent strontium and barium sulfate scale in injection wells, while lessening well souring by reducing sulfate.
GE Power & Water engineered systems for water and process technologies general manager Yuvbir Singh said: "On oilrigs, oil producers use injection water to flood the field and force oil to the producing wells, but if the water is of poor quality, it causes scale and corrosion that plugs and sours the field.
"GE’s new seawater sulfate removal membranes provide excellent sulfate removal and have superior fouling-resistance."
Water can be provided for low salinity flooding, polymer flooding and other forms of enhanced oil recovery as the SWSR can also be used in conjunction with the current reverse osmosis membranes of GE.
Image: GE’s Seawater Sulfate Removal (SWSR) membrane. Photo: courtesy of General Electric.