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A deepwater producer in the Gulf of Mexico was operating a floating platform in 2,000 feet of water. The structure was producing 57,000 BOPD and 300-350 mmscf/day of gas. The average 32 API gravity oil was produced through dry trees from several zones and had cloud points ranging from 105–120°F (40.5–49°C), and pour points ranging from 45 to 55°F (7–13°C). The average wax content was approximately 2.4 percent. The minimum water temperature was estimated to be 38°F (3.2°C) so the customer was concerned about restart issues in the case of an emergency shutdown of the 16” export line.
The customer was also pigging every one to three days to monitor and control deposition. The producer continuously injected a competitor’s paraffin inhibitor downhole at a rate of 450 ppm and defoamer topsides at an average rate of 300 ppm. The annual cost associated with this chemical program was approxi-mately $3.8 million. The producer’s goal was to reduce this cost by an estimated $1 million while maintaining safe operating conditions.
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