A new report on the flow challenges linked to the development of shale gas in the UK will help to inform government energy strategy. The report describes the flow aspects of the shale gas production chain. It outlines key elements of an improved metrology network that would support the safe and sustainable extraction of the UK’s shale gas resource.
“We undertook this report on behalf of Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS),” says Head of R&D, Dr. Martin Hanton. “We have made a number of technology recommendations which will help ensure that the exploitation of shale gas is done in a way that is safe and environmentally responsible.”
Among the recommendations made to optimise the flow measurement of shale gas production streams is the use of direct flow measurement techniques rather of than indirect techniques. The report also recommends the increased use of multiphase meters to give real-time measurements of the composition of flow-back streams. The use of non-invasive flow measurement techniques is also recommended, to avoid the effect of exposure to abrasive agents such as sand.
The report highlights the need for strategies to minimise both the amount and impact of waste produced by shale gas extraction (such as produced water). To drive such strategies forward, it proposes a knowledge transfer programme. This would be set up between NEL and the UK’s unconventional gas industry to raise awareness of key production and waste stream management issues and to encourage the implementation of the report’s recommendations.
The report is important as, although the UK unconventional oil and gas industry is still at an early stage in its development, the shale gas sector could potentially play an important role in energy production over the coming decades, helping to provide energy security for the UK.
The report was written by Senior Consultant, Alick MacGillivray, with contributions from Senior Consultant, Dr. Emmelyn Graham.
For more details, contact Martin Hanton.
Download the Report