Oil and natural gas drillers, producers, and processors often rely on raw untreated natural gas to generate heat, steam, and power at remote operating sites. This fuel gas can contain a variety of impurities, including liquid water, water vapor, liquid hydrocarbons, compressor lubricants, glycol, paraffin, solid particulates, and aerosol mists. These impurities lead to many operational problems, including frozen and damaged pressure regulators, blocked pipes, and damaged heaters, burners, engines, and turbines.
A common fuel gas application is the heating of oil in storage tanks. In order to maintain viscosity, stored oil at a well site must be kept warm. A heater within the tank uses natural gas taken from a production separator or another source near the wellhead. This gas will be saturated with water vapor and may freeze as it’s piped to the tank heater.
Drill rigs are also increasingly consumers of raw field gas. Until recently almost all drilling rigs used diesel engines for power. In recent years rigs have started switching to bi-fuel and natural gas engines, both to reduce emissions and lower operating costs associated with diesel fuel. The fuel gas for a rig’s engine is taken either from a nearby producing well or an accessible gathering line. In most cases, the supply gas is wet and susceptible to freezing and may damage the rig’s engine if left untreated.
Fuel gas is also often used to produce electricity at remote sites using internal combustion engines and generators (i.e. gen sets) or micro-turbines. Gas fired gen sets can be either mobile or stationary units. This equipment requires that the fuel be filtered and dehydrated prior to combustion.
Van Air Systems produces natural gas dryers, desiccants, and filters that are ideal for removing water vapor from fuel gas at remote sites. Our solutions are especially suited to the Oil & Gas industry because they are simple and require no power. PLD series gas dryers along with our three grades of deliquescent desiccant remove water vapor from fuel streams. F200 series filters are ideal for fuel gas coalescing service, removing aerosol mists and liquid drops from fuel gas lines.