Deepwater Chemicals | SLB

Deepwater chemicals

Umbilical-friendly production chemicals address challenges such as scale, corrosion, wax, asphaltene deposition, and hydrates in extreme subsea conditions

Blue and white rendering of an FPSO connected to deepwater subsea wells.

Excellence in extreme conditions

Deepwater production is likely to increase as traditional fields deplete and engineering developments expand industry frontiers. Production chemicals are pivotal in ensuring efficient oil and gas extraction from deepwater fields and maintaining the integrity of associated facilities.

Our expertise in this area derives from involvement in projects encompassing shallow-water, deepwater, and ultradeepwater developments in Brazil, West Africa, and the North Sea, including the presalt layer. We've acquired local knowledge, cultivated domain expertise, and navigated a learning curve together with our customers. As a prominent global service provider for deepwater fields, SLB has played a crucial role in introducing tailored production chemical technologies to numerous operators.

Our extensive range of production chemicals certified for extreme subsea conditions effectively addresses various challenges in deep water, including scale, corrosion, wax, asphaltene deposition, and hydrates.

Deep understanding of operator needs and mutual trust led SLB to engineer game-changing deepwater chemicals for the Brazilian presalt. Early engagement and a relentless focus on performance demonstrated our commitment to innovation and customer success, earning us multiple prestigious contracts.

One-stop shop for deepwater solutions

Leveraging our science, engineering, and digital expertise, we've extended our presence throughout the energy landscape. Our comprehensive industry-leading portfolio in the production domain includes process equipment, chemicals, services, and digital technologies. In challenging conditions such as deep water, our production chemicals undergo a rigorous, customized product qualification process to ensure that their tailored design is suitable for the intended purpose.

Exceeding customer expectations

SLB remains at the forefront of innovation, consistently introducing new technologies and solutions. Whether extending our expertise to small brownfield operators or facilitating the exploration and development of ultradeepwater fields, we're committed to advancing the application of basin-specific technologies and processes.

Our cutting-edge deepwater testing facility in Houston, Texas, is dedicated to researching and developing advanced production chemicals. Comprehensive and rigorous testing procedures involve evaluating the performance, stability, and compatibility of chemicals in environments that mimic the challenges of deepwater conditions.

Notably, our pioneering chemical solutions for deep water have stood the test of time. The industry has acknowledged our technological contributions, exemplified by successful fit-for-basin chemical solutions that effectively address operator challenges, particularly in Brazil. Our commitment to excellence is underscored by consecutive years of receiving the prestigious Technological Innovation Awards from Brazil's National Agency for Petroleum, Natural Gas, and Biofuels (ANP).

Environmental sustainability

Leveraging more than 35 years of experience, we place great emphasis on environmental stewardship. In the Norwegian sector of the North Sea, for example, we have taken a leading role in the industry by conducting internal environmental testing in our accredited laboratory and actively working with regulators and customers to ensure the highest level of protection for the natural ecosystem in the areas where we operate.

Map of deepwater oil and gas operations worldwide—established, emerging, and frontier.
Deepwater oil and gas operations, at various stages of maturity, are in progress offshore six continents.

Our testing protocol for qualifying deepwater production chemicals aligns with API TR 17TR6: Attributes of Production Chemicals in Subsea Production Systems. This document resulted from the Blockage Avoidance in Subsea Injection and Control Systems (BASICS) Joint Industry Project (JIP), in which SLB was a founding member. Below is an overview of these tests. Additional testing may be conducted based on your requirements, ensuring the highest standards of deepwater chemical performance and reliability.

Testing overview

Static aging

- Evaluates thermal stability over a 28-day period at temperatures ranging from 4 to 100 degC
- Detects phase separation, precipitation, or solids deposition that disqualifies a product for deepwater application

Accelerated stability

- Assesses the ability of products to withstand prolonged periods at approximately 4 degC, using a severe accelerated aging test, equivalent to approximately 2.3 years (840 days) of static stability testing
- Analyzes products for any changes in physical appearance after the test

Shear rate and viscosity assessment

- Uses a high-pressure rheometer to study chemical viscosity and rheological properties up to 30,000 psi; typically evaluates viscosity at 5,000 psi and 14.5 psi, at 110 degC and 4 degC each

Dynamic umbilical stability

- Simulates deepwater conditions in a subsea umbilical and chemical injection system, with chemical continuously circulated in a flow loop for 72 hours at pressures up to 5,000 psi
- Monitors stability, separation, and filter plugging

Hydrate resistance

- Assesses using Multiflash® software for hydrate modeling
- Validates through a hydrate rocking cell test replicating umbilical conditions

Multiflash is a mark of KBC Advanced Technologies Limited.

Material compatibility

- Evaluates chemical compatibility with standard metals, plastics, and elastomers

Fluid compatibility

- Assesses compatibility of production chemicals with each other at seabed and injection temperatures

Umbilical flushing solvent

- Selects the optimal flushing solvent for umbilical cleaning during product changeouts

Product cleanliness

- Ensures products are blended to meet NORSOK subsea standard specifications for cleanliness
- Meets the requirements of NAS 1638 Class 6 and ISO 4406 Class 17/15/12 at a minimum