A pilot project to test produced water treatment technology is underway in the Middle East.
Sorbwater Technology, a Norway-based company that has developed a technology to clean oil and other substances from water, is using its technology to clean the produced water, from an oil-in-water content of about 100ppm down to 1ppm oil in water. This will enable the use of a desalination process to remove the salt from the water so it can be reused as process or wash water.
Sorbwater’s water treatment system uses a combination of separation equipment and a flocculent that is extracted from seaweed. Called Sorbfloc, it is able to attach to even the smallest particles or oil droplets in water, the company says. It also has cross-linking capabilities that, when activated according to Sorbwater’s process, instantly and irreversibly flocculate pollution in water to large, easy separable super-strong flocks, according to Sorbwater.
The pilot started last month. If successful, the Sorbwater system will be deployed in several plants, with each installation treating between 200,000 to 300,000 bbl/day of produced water, thus saving ground water resources and reducing wastewater disposal costs. The trial is in the range of 400bbl/day.
“The pilot is now about 50 percent complete, and results to date are excellent,” says Kenneth Olsvik, CEO of Sorbwater Technology. “A successful pilot will represent a breakthrough for reusing such water in the region and achieving zero liquid discharge.”
The global produced water treatment systems market is estimated to grow at a CAGR of 6.1 percent between 2014 and 2020, according to a Future Market Insights report published last year.