Evaluation of Inclined-Pipe, Two-Phase Liquid Holdup and Pressure-Loss Correlation Using Experimental Data (includes associated paper 8782 )
- G.A. Payne (U. of Tulsa) | C.M. Palmer (U. of Tulsa) | J.P. Brill (U. of Tulsa) | H.D. Beggs (U. of Tulsa)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- Journal of Petroleum Technology
- Publication Date
- September 1979
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 1,198 - 1,208
- 1979. Society of Petroleum Engineers
- 4.1.5 Processing Equipment, 4.1.2 Separation and Treating, 5.3.2 Multiphase Flow, 4.6 Natural Gas, 5.2.1 Phase Behavior and PVT Measurements, 4.2 Pipelines, Flowlines and Risers
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A 2-in. (5.1-cm) diameter, 550-ft (168-m) long pipeline was designed and constructed in a hilly terrain configuration. Two-phase-flow holdup and pressure-loss correlations were evaluated using gas/water data obtained from experiments. Accurate predictions were obtained using the Beggs and Brill correlation and a combination of Beggs and Brill and Guzhov et al. correlations.
Two-phase flow in pipelines located in hilly terrain is encountered in the petroleum industry frequently. In oilfield gathering systems, two-phase mixtures must be transported from the wells to the separation facility. Because of the problems associated with oil and gas production offshore, it is usually necessary to have a common pipeline for the liquid and the gas streams. It is especially important to have good design methods for sizing these pipelines.
When designing two-phase pipelines, pressure losses and liquid holdup must be predicted. The liquid holdup is defined as the fraction of pipe occupied by liquid during two-phase flow. A value of liquid holdup also is an important consideration when designing separation equipment, slug catchers, and pumps.
A great deal of research has been conducted in horizontal and vertical two-phase flow, and several good correlations exist for these cases. However, only limited research has been performed in inclined two-phase flow.
The main objective of this study was to design and construct an experimental facility that could be used to investigate two-phase flow phenomena in pipelines laid in hilly terrain. The secondary objective of this study was to evaluate several existing correlations for predicting liquid holdup and pressure losses using data obtained from the test facility.
Several authors have investigated inclined two-phase flow to some degree. An actual field study of a 16-in. pipeline was conducted by Flanigan in 1958. Pressure drops over various sections of the line were measured. He concluded that the inclination of the hills had no effect on the pressure drop and that no pressure recovery existed in the downhill sections. Flanigan's design method included using the Panhandle equation to calculate friction loss and an elevation factor to determine the loss caused by elevation. It is possible that Flanigan's elevation factor could include some pressure recovery in the downhill sections. This is because any pressure loss, not accounted for by the friction term, is assumed to be elevation loss on the uphill side. The overall pressure drop was used in the development of this correlation; consequently, any pressure recovery that might have been present is included in the elevation term.
A two-phase inclined flow study was conducted in 1967 by Guzhov et al. Their data were taken in 2-in. pipe inclined at angles between 9 degrees from horizontal. In development of the correlation, two flow regimes were consideredplug and stratified. A mixture Froude number and the gas input fraction were used to predict flow pattern. In stratified flow, there is one liquid holdup expression for uphill flow and one for downhill flow.
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