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Rapid Oil Spill Response Barge and Configuration

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000239497D
Publication Date: 2014-Nov-12
Document File: 5 page(s) / 3M

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Abstract

Specially outfitted barges for a rapid oil spill response equipped with facilities to receive trailers / flatbeds / train cars carrying specialized skids that possess the kit (equipment) required to collect, to prepare collected oil for flaring, and to flare it. These rapid oil spill response barges would be utilized with tugboats or other propulsion vessels in concert with other vessels of opportunity to response quickly and efficiently to an oil spill near land or near an offshore production platform.

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Rapid Oil Spill Response Barge and Configuration

                In the oil and gas industry, hydrocarbons are accessed via a wellbore to provide a fluid flow path to a processing facility. Some of these hydrocarbon resources are located under bodies of water, such as lakes, seas, bays, rivers and/or oceans, while others are located at onshore locations. To transfer hydrocarbons from such locations, a pipeline and/or one or more different vessels (e.g., ship or tanker trucks) may be utilized through various segments from the wellbore and the processing facility. Additionally, hydrocarbons may be transported from a production region to another region for consumption / processing into hydrocarbon-based products or from one hydrocarbon storage location to another. Transfer of hydrocarbons between such locations often requires one or more different vessels and routes over bodies of water, such as lakes, seas, bays, rivers and/or oceans.

                Offshore leaks and/or spills from transfer operations may be problematic due to the hydrocarbons being released into a body of water. Typically, the hydrocarbons may form a slick on the surface of the water, which may be referred to as an oil slick. At the surface, the oil slicks are subjected to wind, waves and currents, which results in the oil slick being distributed over large geographic areas (also referred to as “weathering”). These oil slicks may be removed by mechanical and other oil release management techniques. As an example, typical oil release management techniques include in situ burning, oil collection techniques and/or other oil release management techniques.

                The in situ burning techniques typically utilize booms that are fire resistant to contain an oil slick. The in situ burning techniques commonly include steps, such as containing the oil slick with booms, and igniting the captured oil. The burning of the oil produces large smoke pillars because the oil is not burned efficiently (e.g., portions of the fire being low in oxygen). Further, the inefficient burning results in residuals that may require further treatment.

                Another oil release management method is the oil collection technique. This technique typically involves steps, such as containing the oil slick with booms, utilizing skimmers with the booms to collect and capture the oil and then transporting the oil to an on-shore location or larger vessel for processing. As the oil slicks may be geographically dispersed, different size marine vessels may be utilized together, which may involve different oil management capabilities and coordination between the different marine vessels. Specifically, smaller marine vessels may be utilized to contain and collect the oil and larger marine vessels may be utilized to receive the oil collected by the smaller vessels, as well as contain, collect and process the oil. The coordination and operatio...