Many subsea transportation installations have big challenges related to slugging flow. Unstable multiphase flow in which flow rates, pressures and temperatures may oscillate, can lead to considerable stress on components, additional fatigue loading, sub-optimal production and even shut-off of production. A good understanding of the flow conditions in any subsea riser or flowline is essential. This enables the operator to mitigate against potential damage and prolong component lifetime whilst maintaining optimal flow and production conditions.
The inconsistent nature of slug flow generates tiny disturbances which can be detected in the acoustic signal produced. Silixa’s intelligent Distributed Acoustic Sensors (iDAS) provides continuous real-time acoustic information along the full length of the flowline. The system captures the true acoustic signal (amplitude, frequency and phase) and by tracking the progression of these disruptions along the flowline, the speed of the slug can be estimated, and the source located.