Baker Hughes CENtigrade ESP Systems Accumulate 100 Years of Operation

HOUSTON, TEXAS (April 24, 2013) – Baker Hughes announced that on February 12, 2013 its CENtigrade Ultra Temperature electrical submersible pump (ESP)™ systems had reached a significant milestone when they attained 100 years of cumulative run life. These ESP systems are designed for operation in steam-assisted recovery projects, where production is stimulated by injecting steam into the bitumen-bearing formation. In addition to the Ultra Temperature ESP Systems™, the CENtigrade offering includes the Extreme Temperature ESP System™ and High Temperature ESP systems. The first Ultra Temperature ESP system was installed on April 15, 2010.

“Our customers need ESP systems to meet the challenge of high-temperature steam-assisted gravity drainage (SAGD) operations,” said Wade Welborn, Baker Hughes Vice President of Artificial Lift Systems. “This run life milestone is the result of Baker Hughes’s commitment to developing and delivering reliable technology for this demanding application.”

Based on field experience, oil sands operators determined that higher steam temperatures result in increased production from SAGD well pairs. By raising fluid temperature, the steam chamber volume around the horizontal well pairs is increased and the bitumen becomes more mobile, enabling more bitumen to flow more easily into the producing well, which is equipped with an ESP system.

To help operators achieve their production objectives, for more than a decade Baker Hughes has invested in the development of ESP systems that operate at increasingly higher bottomhole temperatures. The company’s Artificial Lift Research and Technology Center in Claremore, Oklahoma, has unmatched resources for advancing the technology of ESP systems, with fully monitored test wells and flow loops for evaluating pump system performance while handling high viscosity fluids and operating at temperatures up to 572°F (300°C).

In 2003, the first Baker Hughes ESP system was installed in a SAGD well in Alberta, Canada. In 2004, Baker Hughes introduced the CENtigrade Extreme Temperature ESP system, rated for operation at 428°F (220 °C). Introduced in 2010, the CENtigrade Ultra Temperature ESP system is the first reliable ESP system rated at 482°F (250°C) bottomhole temperature. Two Ultra Temperature ESP sytems have exceeded 1,000 days of run life and are still in operation.

The Ultra Temperature ESP system includes many upgrades over previous designs to enable operation at such elevated temperatures. Electrical and insulation upgrades extend motor run life, high-temperature motor oils ensure reliability, and upgraded motor power cable connectors and electrical motor leads prevent failures. Development of the Ultra Temperature ESP system also required extensive materials testing to optimize elastomers, epoxies, oils and additives. Baker Hughes is conducting ongoing research to further enhance CENtigrade system performance and reliability.

Baker Hughes is a leading supplier of oilfield services, products, technology and systems to the worldwide oil and natural gas industry. The company’s 58,000-plus employees today work in more than 80 countries helping customers find, evaluate, drill, produce, transport and process hydrocarbon resources.

CENtigrade Production Systems

You can maximize your heavy oil production and ultimate recovery with the industry’s most comprehensive portfolio of thermal recovery technology from Baker Hughes.

View More