The level of interest in the Bab project is currently very high and this field presents huge and complex technical challenges with the CO2 content in the Feedgas at approximaely 10%, and the H2S content varying from 30–40%. Targeted production is just over 500 million scf/d of sales gas.
Hail is another potential sour gas project in Abu Dhabi, currently at the feasibility study phase. It is expected to produce 400-600 million scf/d of sales gas. The H2S content of this offshore field is 15%, which is lower than the onshore fields, but the offshore location, albeit in shallow water, may increase production costs. The Shuwaihat field is also creating strong interest and reserves are estimated between 28 to 85 bcm.
The North Field is the largest gas field in the world at 1500 tcf and straddles Iran and Qatar. South Pars is on the Iranian side and in spite of delays caused by international sanctions, Iran has been steadily progressing through the 29 project phases, all of which involve gas and condensate recovery.
On the Qatari side of the North Field, gas is brought ashore to the massive complex at Ras Laffan. Gas production will rise to 2.2 million t/a by 2018 as more gas is processed. The new Barzan gas project, designed to provide gas for domestic use, is now in start-up, with Train 1 commissioned and Train 2 due to start up later this year. Total sales gas output at capacity will be 1.4 bcf/d.
In neighbouring KSA, Karan is the first non-associated sour gas development. The gas is produced offshore and pumped for processing onshore at the existing Kursaniyah gas plant.
Additionally the Wasit gas plant has been built to process gas from the offshore Arabiyah and Hasbah sour non-associated gas fields. Total gas processing capacity is 2.6 billion scf/d to produce 1.75 billion scf/d of sales gas. H2S content averages 4-8%, and the sulphur recovery section includes four SRUs with a total capacity of 2,400 t/d (800,000 t/a). Start-up is due to begin this year with full production by 2016. Fadhill is another sour gas processing plant, designed to process additional gas from the Kursaniyah and Hasbah sour gas fields. Target production has been increased to 2.5 billion scf/d, with start-up scheduled for late 2018. The plant is currently in its design phase.
Oman has two major sour gas processing projects. One is at Yibal Khuff Sudair and is a deep oil and associated sour gas deposit beneath an existing field, with an H2S content of 3%. An 85,000 t/a sulphur recovery plant is due for completion this year, and commissioning of the gas project is expected in 2019. The other project is the Rabab Harweel Integrated Project.
Internationally other sour gas exploration activities are ongoing in Central Asia, particularly in Turkmenistan. The long awaited Kashagan project in Kazakhstan is expected to restart production in 2017 once gas leaks from the sour gas pipelines are finally eradicated. Also sour gas activities in China are ongoing in the Yuanba and Chuandongbei Gas Fields and the Gorgon and Janz-I0 Gas Fields off the coast in Western Australia with their reserves of 40 tcf are expected to produce 15.6 tons/year of LNG.
The technologies involved in sour field management and production are always progressing and the latest developments across the whole management spectrum will be included in the SOGAT Conference Programme. Also within this programme, the well known coverage of technical developments with papers from Operators will be encouraged as ever. As usual practical Workshops on topical issues in these areas will be presented in the first two days of SOGAT 2016 and the International Advisory Committee are planning workshops on: Sulphur Recovery and Management, Operating issues with Lean Acid Gas and BTX, Uses of Specialised Solvents in AGE and other new workshop topics currently under review.
A feature for 2016 will be the repeat of the Technical Tour of the Habshan V Plant.
The SOGAT Exhibition will see the world’s leading vendors and suppliers returning again and so SOGAT 2016 will continue its well known trend and reputation, as the international event that provides a one stop review of all the latest developments in Global Sour Hydrocarbon Management.