Investigating processes and technology for the flow of fluids, leak detection, and solids deposition.

A flow loop are pieces of equipment meant to measure fluids as they flow through a pipe. Sensors measure the characteristics of the fluid at different points in the flow and responses to conditions such as temperature, deposition velocity, pressure drops, friction factors, flow regimes, and particle concentration.

InnoTech Alberta has a pilot-scale slurry flow loop, process water flow loop, pigging flow loop, and an oil sand extraction flow loop to qualify the hydrodynamic properties of multiphase flows and simulate the operating conditions of pipes.

Pilot-Scale Slurry Flow Loop

This 250 mm (10”) multiphase flow facility is a platform-based pilot-scale test bed for evaluating different types of slurry materials and equipment, and fluid flow technologies. Because it is a platform, it can easily be configured to suit our partner’s needs. It can be used to simulate slurry, slurry-gas, liquid-gas or solids-liquid-gas flow conditions in a controlled environment without high cost, downtime and risk associated with industrial trials. It can handle solids up to 100 mm (4”) of diameter.

The pilot scale slurry flow loop is cost-effective facility enables the assessment of new technologies or solutions, materials and components or equipment for slurry, leak detection, flow improver technologies, monitoring technologies, and solids deposition applications. Some of applications are wear, corrosion, erosion, pressure drops, flow regimes, deposition velocities, particle concentration and velocity profiles, multiphase metering and leak detection, flocculants, mixers, pumps, valves, drag reducing agents, inhibitors, liners, elbows, valves, fittings, etc. This facility is also supported with our state-of-the-art analytical laboratory for fluid rheology (rheometer), and solid characterization and monitoring of solid particle degradation (CAMSIZER).

Process Water Flow Loop

The process water flow loop is purposely designed to investigate the corrosivity of water, corrosion mechanisms and mitigation strategies under conditions simulating industrial applications. This facility provides control over water chemistry, dissolved gases content, pressure, temperature, and flowrate. The flow loop is modularly built offering a high flexibility to meet our partners’ needs.

Some of the past partners’ applications include assessment of localized corrosion, coating evaluation, friction factors evaluation, tubercle formation, scaling/fouling, and evaluation of instrumentation for corrosion detection. Additional applications include the assessment of localized corrosion, tubercle formation, scaling/fouling, and the evaluation of instrumentation for corrosion detection. This flow loop is built in a modular fashion and is highly customizable.

Hydrocarbon Flow Loop

The 100 mm (4”) modularly built flow loop allows simulating pipeline operation with either liquid hydrocarbons or water under controlled environment. It has the ability to handle multiphase fluids. This unique facility is centred on evaluating effectiveness of various cleaning or utility and filming pipeline pigs.

Additional applications include assessment of corrosion inhibitors, corrosion rate monitoring, simulation of localized corrosion, leak detection, flow improver or drag reducing agent technologies, pressure drops, and flow regimes.

Oil Sands Extraction Loop

The work we conduct with our oil sands extraction loop allow our clients to extract and bitumen and heavy oil so that it will flow more easily and it will be able to be transported through pipelines.

The InnoTech Alberta team conducts experiments, simulations, and computational fluid dynamics (CFD) analysis. This allows us to characterize oil sands emulsions and study the best methods to process and transport them.

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Flow Loop Facilities