GlassPoint Solar, a leading supplier of solar energy to the oil and gas industry, has discussed ways its solar technology can be strategically deployed to produce heavy oil at the ongoing Kuwait Oil & Gas Show 2017 (KOGS), in Kuwait.
The four-day event will conclude later today (October 18), at the Kuwait International Fair in Mishref.
Kuwait’s first heavy oil project is now in development at Ratqa Lower Fars, which will use advanced techniques and steam injection. GlassPoint’s solar technology can sustainably provide the majority of the steam required for this project, reducing production costs and strengthening energy security, said a statement.
Furthermore, utilising solar energy on the oilfield can contribute to HH the Amir of Kuwait’s vision of generating 15 per cent of its energy mix from renewable sources.
Research released by GlassPoint detailed how half of Kuwait’s renewable energy target can be achieved by using its technology at Ratqa Lower Fars alone, it added.
GlassPoint’s technology has already been deployed at scale in Oman, said a statement.
Hussain Shehab, country chairman, GlassPoint Kuwait, said: “Kuwait’s energy industry is expanding, not only with heavy oil production, but also in renewable energy.”
“GlassPoint’s solar technology can be deployed quickly to help Kuwait achieve these strategic priorities at the same time,” he said.
“Kuwait Petroleum Corporation plans to produce 270,000 barrels of heavy oil per day by 2030, and without a more sustainable method of producing steam for extraction our natural gas consumption will rise,” he added.
“The natural gas needed to produce the steam for Ratqa would be equal to a quarter of our current gas production, and could more than double our gas imports. Instead of using one valuable commodity to produce another, we can harness the sun’s free, renewable energy to raise steam. This will maximize production rates, save gas and reduce costs,” he continued.
As part of the event, Shehab, a 30-year veteran of Kuwait Oil Company, spoke at the plenary session ‘Diversification - Upstream Innovation and Challenges’ where he highlighted the benefits of using solar energy to achieve Kuwait’s production targets and contribute to the Amir’s renewables vision.
GlassPoint vice president of business development John O’Donnell participated in the technical conference, presenting a detailed study on the potential for using solar energy in oil production and refining.
The study, co-authored with Stanford University researchers, discovered Kuwait was the largest market worldwide for deploying solar thermal energy in the upstream sector, including new developments like Ratqa.
May Al Zanki, director of sales and business development at GlassPoint Kuwait, discussed the role of women in its engineering and business ranks throughout the company’s worldwide operations as part of the Empowerment of Women workshop.
GlassPoint’s technology has been deployed on oilfields in the US and the Middle East and is proven to meet oil and gas standards for safety and reliability. After evaluating several solar technologies and completing a successful pilot programme, Petroleum Development Oman (PDO) awarded GlassPoint the commercial-scale Miraah project in 2015.
Miraah will deliver over one gigawatt of peak thermal energy, generating 6,000 tonnes of steam per day. Construction of Miraah is progressing on schedule and within budget, with more than 1.5 million safe man hours completed.
The two companies recently announced that Miraah has achieved 55 per cent cost savings to date compared to the pilot project. These savings resulted from the use of improved designs, enhanced tooling and increased workforce productivity.
From its dedicated booth, GlassPoint offered the event’s 5,000 attendees a virtual reality tour of the milestone solar plant. True to the event’s theme ‘Shaping the energy future: integration and diversification,’ the virtual reality demonstration immersed visitors in the gigawatt-scale project, so that they could experience first-hand the convergence between renewable and conventional energy.
GlassPoint also presented educational sessions at its booth, including the economics of using solar to power oilfield operations as well as the technical considerations for solar enhanced oil recovery (EOR) compared to solar for electricity generation, it stated. – TradeArabia News Service