Wellhead management – key to successful CSG implementation

Selecting the right technology with the right integration partner ensures lower maintenance costs for the life of a wellhead.

Managing coal seam gas (CSG) wellheads requires the involved company’s continuous monitoring and control to maintain the wellhead’s operation and long term viability.

An integrated solution to wellhead management includes using telemetry, telecommunications, a supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) and operator interface as well as a “˜back office’ production or process information system.

For more advanced asset owners, this integrated management may also include the automation of the wellhead itself where, as a system, all components work in unison and are designed as part of the overall CSG enterprise asset management.

When Parasyn Controls was discussing the technology decisions for Origin Energy’s Spring Gully field, several considerations came to hand. The technology needed to incorporate; suitable hardware for the harsh environment; capability to meet flow metering requirements, including customisation; communication integration with several technologies and devices simultaneously; programming and maintenance standardisation.

The initial implementation at Spring Gully involved well production monitoring within the framework of a turnkey project delivery. An essential consideration in the design was the need for reliability to reduce the requirement for daily maintenance or operational visits by field staff over a dispersed geographic area.

The technologies applied for the project included the use of the SCADAPack 350 RTU using the DNP3 communications protocol; SCADA software integrated for very large scale – over 150,000 tags per redundant server; Process Historian; and web based reporting.

Some of the additional benefits of the Control Microsystems SCADAPack 350 hardware included in the design were an Integrated RealFLO, or flow computer, and PLC functionality. The PLC functionality was tightly integrated with the multivariable transmitter to create a reliable and robust core for the wellhead telemetry.

The DNP3 protocol and PLC functionality were vital for the accurate reporting of time series data. The transportation and management of conditioned field data allows engineers, managers and planners to each manage their part of the system with accuracy and predictability.

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