(68e) Introduction to Gas Hydrate Formation and Mitigation

Aichele, C. P., Oklahoma State University
Venkataramani, D., Oklahoma State University

In the context of oil and gas operations, gas hydrates are crystalline structures that form when water and hydrocarbons come into contact at low temperatures and elevated pressures. The oil and gas industry currently spends millions of dollars annually on the mitigation and risk management associated with hydrates. The formation of these solid structures can lead to pipeline blockages that can result in ruptures and lost production. Avoiding the formation of these solid blockages is critical for maintaining sufficient production rates. Though hydrates have been researched for decades, there still remain significant technical challenges in managing and preventing hydrate blockage formation in upstream oil and gas operations. This presentation will focus on the background of gas hydrates, why they represent a significant challenge for the oil and gas industry, and recent advances toward improving our understanding and management of hydrates in upstream applications.