SBM Offshore’s latest fluid swivel increases the operating range of high-pressure swivels by using a technique to cascade the pressure over multiple seals. Fluid swivels transfer oil, gas, and water between a fixed turret on a floating, production, storage, and offloading (FPSO) vessel and the vessel’s deck, where they are typically treated, processed, and stored. The fluid swivel also transfers treated water and gas from the vessel’s topside to the turret for reinjection or for gas export. The 12-in. prototype swivel has been fully qualified to 12,000 psig and has passed long-term endurance test runs. It has the potential to operate at more than 14,500 psig. The swivel, which was awarded a 2014 Offshore Technology Conference Spotlight on New Technology Award, is specifically designed for gas or water injection from an FPSO into ultrahigh-pressure reservoirs, such as the lower tertiary fields of the US Gulf of Mexico.
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