Novel Vent Gas Recovery in Southern Mexico

January 2014

Caltec has supplied and commissioned a 6-inch Surface Jet Pump (SJP) to recover hydrocarbon gas currently being cold vented locally to atmosphere at an oil and gas separation facility located in Southern Mexico. The SJP in this case recovers free gas being vented through the tank overpressure safety valves from oil storage tanks in a flow station and returns it to the process system for recovery and subsequent export, removing the fire hazard and discharge of greenhouse gasses. Caltec, working with its Mexican partner Equipos Industriales del Golfo SA (EIGSA), was able to design, supply, install and commission an SJP unit within twelve weeks of order.

With no moving parts and no power requirements, SJP systems are an extremely versatile technology offering a cost effective, simple and rapidly deployed means of capturing vent or flare gas streams and returning to production. Alternative flare and vent gas recovery systems necessitate installation of utilities, fuel consumption and complex maintenance and operator oversight.

Uncontrolled venting and cold flaring (incomplete combustion) of associated hydrocarbon gases has historically been accepted practice around the world, especially in remote locations where there is no infrastructure to transport gas to end users. This contributes to the accumulation of greenhouse gases that cause climate change and is a waste of both resources and potential revenue to an operator. As the desire for environmental protection has increased worldwide, operators and service companies are seeking ever more efficient ways of minimising these losses and recovering these gases.

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