A two-phase vertical separator separates gas from liquids. A three-phase vertical separator separates the gas from oil, and oil from water.
Vertical separators are one of the most used vessels in the Energy Industry. In this video, we introduce you to the basics of a separator.
How Does Separation Occur?
Separation happens in many ways and for a variety of reasons.
Resources come to the surface in many forms and combinations. Sometimes separation adds value to the resource, sometimes we separate components for safety reasons.
Nature helps us in the separation process. Often, specific gravities of resources are all that is needed to facilitate separation.
Other times producers use retention (time in the vessel) or mechanical devices.
While initial separations happens in upstream production, all three sectors of the energy industry–upstream, midstream, and downstream–incorporate separation in their processes.
Size, Phases, and Pressures of a Vertical Three and Two Phase Separator
Producers consider size, separation capabilities and accessibility to the internals when specifying separators.
Pressure is also a key factor. Kimray provides different options for the controls on these vessels for both high pressure and low pressure.
Pneumatic Controls for Vertical Separators
Pneumatic controls use some form of gas to operate and control. These gases can be the natural gas produced from the well or air supplied by an outside source like a compressor.
The quantity and quality of gas is important when choosing pneumatic controls. The process may also require pneumatics. For example, metering fluids usually requires pneumatic controls to maintain a level of accuracy because they can be opened and closed quickly.
Mechanical Controls for Vertical Separators
If the operating pressure is low enough, mechanical controls are a great choice. We define mechanical controls as any device that uses levers and linkages to operate.
Mechanical valves don’t use gas to operate and therefore don’t emit gas under normal operation. This makes them a good option for operation in enclosed buildings.
To speak with an expert about controlling your three phase or two phase vertical separator, contact your local Kimray store or authorized distributor.