Welcome to the peer-reviewed papers section of Oil and Gas Facilities. In the August editorial, I emphasized SPE’s international character, which is again very appropriate for this issue. This month, the SPE Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition will be held outside of the United States for the second time in its history. As was the case in the August issue, the papers selected for this issue come from all around the world. I hope that this international focus will encourage all SPE members to submit papers for review and publication in this journal.
The first paper originates from Qatar. It describes the overall safety, health, environment, and security management system for the construction phase of a large engineering, procurement, and construction contract. Apart from the main contractor, the job site had eight subcontractors with approximately 30,000 workers from 45 countries speaking more than 20 languages—a truly international workforce The paper examines all aspects of this system, including the challenges that were faced to promote an incident- and injury-free workplace.
The second paper, which comes from China, describes the efforts to resume production from an oil field in the South China Sea in the aftermath of a strong typhoon that passed over the field. The main facilities at this field were eight fixed-jacket platforms and two subsea-production wellheads, all connected to a floating production, storage, and offloading (FPSO) vessel. The typhoon damaged not only all production risers connected to the FPSO vessel, but also the vessel’s permanent mooring system. To resume production in a fast-track manner, a dynamic-positioning FPSO vessel was used temporarily. Within 6 months, the field was brought back into production and continued to operate in this manner for more than 18 months, until the permanent field-repair work had been completed.
The third paper, from the Middle East, is about a study in Saudi Arabia to identify and optimize a novel water-ionic technology that uses nanofiltration and reverse-osmosis membrane-based processes to provide multiple water streams of widely varying ionic strength and content. These streams can then be blended to yield a smart-water cocktail that meets the requirements for different improved-oil-recovery and enhanced-oil-recovery processes, including smart waterflooding in carbonate reservoirs.
Finally, the fourth paper comes from the United States. It aims to develop a rigorous set of terms and operational classifications for process-control engineers. As natural-gas-actuated pneumatic-control equipment has become a focus area for regulators trying to reduce the quantity of actual pollutants and greenhouse gases released into the atmosphere, the use of inconsistent key terms has led to regulations that are at odds with the realities of existing equipment. Standardizing the terminology, the author argues, will benefit operators, manufacturers, and regulators alike.
I hope that you will review these interesting papers, and I invite you to submit a discussion whenever you feel that the content of a particular paper warrants further debate.
Gerald Verbeek, Peer-Review Editor, Verbeek Management Services
Williams Chirinos, Inexertus
Galen Dino, Consultant
Sudhakar Mahajanam, ConocoPhillips