A new approach for freshwater production and energy recovery from an oil field

Salman Memon, Young Deuk Kim, Sadam Soomro, Mujeeb Iqbal Soomro, Woo Seung Kim

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This paper presents a new approach to recover energy and producing freshwater from an oil and gas field using a reverse osmosis (RO) system. We proposed three different RO system configurations: (i) the RO system without energy recovery (i.e., configuration 1), (ii) the RO system with one energy recovery device (i.e., configuration 2), and (iii) the RO system with two energy recovery devices (i.e., configuration 3). Each specific energy consumption (SEC) was then analyzed by solving the mathematical model of RO using MATLAB software. As the feed pressure increased from 4.559 to 6.586 MPa, the SEC decreased from 12.235 to 0.977 kW h/m3 for configuration 1, from 10.680 to 0.727 kW h/m3 for configuration 2, and from 3.367 to 0.323 kW h/m3 for configuration 3, respectively, thus indicating the lowest SEC in configuration 3. In addition, the sensitivity analysis results showed that the SEC decreases significantly with an increase in the stream (crude oil, natural gas, and produced water) pressure, flow rate, and density. In conclusion, the RO system of configuration 3 exhibited a significant decrease in SEC, and freshwater from the RO system makes it beneficial in water scarce regions.

Original languageEnglish
Article number101145
JournalJournal of Water Process Engineering
Publication statusPublished - 2020 Apr



  • Desalination
  • Energy recovery
  • Produced water
  • Reverse osmosis
  • Sensitivity analysis

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