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Largest Ever Controlled CO2 Release from Underwater Pipeline Planned

underwater pipelineDNV GL is conducting the oil and gas industry’s largest ever controlled release of carbon dioxide from an underwater pipeline at its Spadeadam Testing and Research Center in Cumbria, United Kingdom.

The installation of offshore CO2 pipelines linked to depleted subsea gas reservoirs is a possible solution to mitigate CO2 emissions from power plants and large industrial sources. The transportation of CO2 through offshore pipelines may also increase due to enhanced oil recovery programs.

The planned underwater release is scheduled to start in January and is part of an international joint industry project (JIP) to develop safety guidelines on the use of offshore CO2 pipelines.

Norway’s Gassnova, Brazil’s Petrobras, the UK government’s Department of Energy and Climate Change, the UK’s National Grid and DNV GL are participating in the JIP. Italy’s ENI is expected to join the JIP in early 2016.

This is the second experimental phase, which will run for three months and will involve releases in a 40-meter diameter, 12-meter deep pond at Spadeadam.

The testing will use high-speed underwater cameras and other measurement techniques to examine the configuration and characteristics of the released gas.

The first phase of experiments are currently under way at Spadeadam and are expected to be complete by December. Phase one involves small-scale, controlled CO2 releases from a three-inch nominal bore pipeline in a 8.5 meter diameter, three meter deep water tank.

Experimental findings are shared periodically with JIP participants so that next steps can be refined. CO2 testing at Spadeadam will conclude by June 2016.

DNV GL announced last month that it is seeking oil and gas industry partners to participate in a project that will develop end-of-life guidelines for offshore oil and gas installations.

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