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Oil & Gas
In the Jonah Field of Wyoming, British Petroleum (BP) America
no longer siphons its own product to get more out of the ground. One of the largest onshore natural gas discoveries in the U.S., the expansive Jonah Field is estimated to contain 297 billion-cubic-meters of natural gas. But to tap into that vast resource, BP had to waste environmentally unfriendly gas to fuel pneumatic pumps that support well-site equipment.
“We recognized an opportunity to eliminate gas-driven pumps, increase revenue by keeping gas in the system, and reduce the impact on the environment,” said Will Burton of BP.
In 2007, a forward-thinking Burton agreed to install a microturbine that runs on natural gas produced at the wellsite. In addition to
being fueled by raw natural gas, the clean-and-green microturbine emits extremely low greenhouse-gas emissions and requires little maintenance.
In August 2007, Capstone Turbine Corp. installed a C30 microturbine to drive wellsite production equipment. The microturbine uses a small amount of clean natural gas (also referred to as “dry gas”) to generate 20kW of power.
Electricity produced by the microturbine powers triethylene glycol (TEG) dehydration and glycol heat tracing pumps, eliminating the need for the environmentally unfriendly gas-driven and pneumatic-type pumps typically found throughout the Jonah Field.
At a glance
First Microturbine Commissioned
Dry and wet natural gas
• 4 Capstone C30 MicroTurbines® drive wellsite production equipment.
• The microturbines use “wet” ash gas to generate 20kW of power each.
• Electricity produced by the microturbines power TEG dehydration and glycol heat tracing pumps, eliminating the need for the environmentally unfriendly gas-driven and pneumatic-type pumps.
• The initial microturbine has run since August 2007 with no operational problems.
• Signi cant reduction of greenhouse-gas emissions.
• Savings of nearly 12 million-standard-cubic- feet of natural gas each year that once had been used to fuel pumps.
• The Jonah microturbine project was
a commended entry in the competitive BP Helios Awards in 2008.
• BP plans to install Capstone microturbines at 5 more Jonah Field sites in 2012.
• In addition, BP hopes to power automation, chemical injection, and cathodic protection systems with microturbine-produced electricity and is investigating the use
of a VRU (Vapor Recovery Unit) to capture ash gas from the onsite condensate storage tanks.
The remote Jonah Field wellsite uses a Capstone C30 microturbine to generate electricity to run the site’s pumps.
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