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  • Fluid modeling helps improve skim tank performance


    Daniel W. Phelps, Rafiqul I. Khan, Joseph M. Lee, Paul Andrews and Dan Marlowe

    Internals designed for an existing moderate-sized skim tank (10,000-bbl nominal volume) were studied using computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations. The proposed internals included an inlet distribution system, perforated baffles for flow control, an oil skim mechanism and a controlled water flow outlet. The inlet was designed to uniformly distribute fluid across the inlet perforated baffle, to have minimal pressure drop, and to allow sand cleanout. The inlet perforated baffle was designed with sufficient pressure drop to provide flow control and uniform flow across the skim tank. The exit perforated baffle was similarly designed, with sufficient pressure drop to control the flow to the water outlet. A skim trough was designed across the exit perforated plate baffle for skimming the oil and excess water to an exit oil bucket with sufficient volume for flow control. The water outlet was designed with controlled flow through perforated plates prior to exit through staggered outlet nozzles.

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