Friction findings could boost Norwegian gas exports

Gassco is aiming to step up exports of Norwegian gas to the UK and mainland Europe, following a study of dynamic forces in Norway's subsea trunklines.

Offshore staff

OSLO, Norway --Gassco is aiming to step up exports of Norwegian gas to the UK and mainland Europe, following a study of dynamic forces in Norway's subsea trunklines.

The pipeline operator conducted the analysis with research foundation Polytec and the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU). They found that by enhancing knowledge of the relationship between friction and capacity, pipeline throughput could be improved.

Starting point for this work was the desire to create a new calculation model for wall friction in the pipelines. Having determined the level of friction between pipeline and gas, the team were also able to calculate the speed at which the gas travels, and accordingly how much could be transported.

"We have already been able to expand capacity in the Zeepipe 1 and Franpipe 1 lines by 0.5-1 %," said Leif Idar of Gassco's technology department. This increase should allow a further 0.5 bcm (18 bcf) per year to be exported through these lines.

The findings should lead to further expansion of the Europipe II and Langeled lines in future, generating an additional annual increase of 1 bcm (35 bcf).

04/24/2008

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