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CARBON CAPTURE AND STORAGE (CCS) USING BUOYS

The use of hydrocarbons will form a significant part of our energy mix for many decades to come. Climate change, however, dictates that the carbon produced during its use together with carbon produced in other industrial processes, must be safely precluded from emission into the atmosphere. This will be achieved in many ways but the most effective is likely to be the capture and safe long term disposal of carbon in the form of liquid carbon dioxide into secure subsurface reservoirs and sinks deep beneath the seabed (CCS). Carbon disposal will be a tax mitigation activity - a necessary but usually unwelcome procedure. The procrastination of most government agencies in promoting CCS is well known and to initiate CCS it is essential that costs associated with CO2 disposal are minimised and/or that the CCS process attracts a financial incentive.

In the USA CO2 is extensively used to enhance oil recovery (EOR) by providing a pressure drive towards the producing well(s). This technique offers a real opportunity to both greatly increase the profitability of existing mature and new fields whilst providing an opportunity to sequester significant quantities of CO2 in the depleting field.

Pipeline Connection?

Very large accumulations and reservoirs can be supplied by pipeline as the considerable capital cost of such infrastructure can then be justified and proposals are under development for such projects. 
It is, however, estimated that there are probably only four opportunities sufficiently large available in the North Sea for a pipeline-based development. There is, therefore, a requirement for a more flexible approach which can provide liquid CO2 economically to smaller hydrocarbon developments.

Ocean has developed a concept that can meet this requirement in a technically efficient and cost effective manner using substantially proven and robust technology. The concept, which is based on Ocean’s autonomous buoy technology, is called Sea Sequestor.

Sea Sequestor is based on the use of an Ocean autonomous process buoy in conjunction with a seabed storage system (acting as offshore buffer storage) and associated sub-systems (e.g. loading system). This unique technology will provide for the cost-effective and flexible delivery of CO2 to any remote injection point enabling even small sinks/reservoirs to be successfully exploited and small producing fields to be fully drained, increasing recoverable oil and field profitability.

Process

Sea Sequestor accepts captured CO2 delivered as a liquid (not a super-cooled fluid) by tanker into a subsea storage facility which acts as a buffer storage and maintains the CO2 as a liquid until required. The liquid CO2 is then injected at a controlled rate through the injection buoy and one or more subsea injection wells into the subsurface formation.  

The key components of the system comprise:

  • A cold temperature liquid import system (insulated, pressurised buoyant riser with hydraulic connector for insulated tanker transfer hose)
  • An insulated concrete seabed storage tank (typically 200,000 bbls) with floating fluid barrier c/w low temperature seals
  • Insulated in-field fluid transfer lines
  • Fluid Injection Buoy
  • Insulated Injection Riser to Wells
  • Subsea Injection Tree(s) and Well(s) 

Sea Sequestor may represent the key to cost-effective CO2 sequestration for locations remote from the shore and, more vitally, will permit the wide use of CO2 for EOR which will only otherwise be applied to a few fields either sufficiently large to justify a new pipeline or close to a source of emitted CO2. The concept described has been derived directly from Ocean’s Sea Producer autonomous production buoy technology currently under development in conjunction with a major contractor for worldwide application. It is based on the use of a well-proven, low cost, stable, large capacity buoy system with over 20 years of successful operation in severe weather conditions. Furthermore the system is relocatable enabling its use on multiple locations thus suiting the use of Sea Sequestor for smaller field developments and enabling capital costs to be amortised over several consecutive developments.     

CCS and Sea Sequestor

Real Experience,Real Expertise,Proven Technology

We've been there, We've done It!

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Head Office Phone: +44 (0) 1291 408088

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