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Fluid Leakage in Submerged Offshore Pipeline: An Analysis of Oil Dispersion in Seawater

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Document pages: 27 pages

Abstract: Leakages in oil pipelines can cause financial losses and several environmental damages, where large-scale offshore oil and gas exploration results in large releases of oil and gas into ocean waters. In the event of oil leakage, an immediate and adequate response is required to reduce environmental damage, such as containment barriers, for example, which depends on the agglomeration of oil particles, velocity and tendency to propagation. Thus, the understanding of the fluid flow behavior around of subsea pipeline at different depths is crucial. On the other hand, the knowledge of interfacial phenomena of immiscible liquids allows the process of adjective migration in submarine pipelines. Consequently, this science enables the prediction of the behavior and the geometric shape of the water-oil interface and provides a phenomenological foundation concerning the theories of perturbation, the stability criteria and mathematical modeling, as well as the flow patterns in the neighborhoods and submerged pipelines. From this perspective, this work aims to study the oil dispersion in sea water caused by leakage in a submerged pipeline. Here, a two-dimensional mathematical model based on the mass and linear momentum conservation equations and the standard k-ε turbulence model, was developed. The dynamic behavior of the oil and water phases is evaluated by pressure fields, surface velocity, volumetric fraction and velocity vectors. Simulation results show the presence of oil flux from the pipe to the marine stream and vice-versa. Further, the increase in oil velocity at the pipe inlet leads to an increase in pressure drop.

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