Practical validation of a new Desander model

Manuel Hartl

Research output: ThesisMaster's Thesis


Throughout the last years, the oil industry has seen comparably low oil prices. Therefore, increased pressure is building on oil companies to increase their operational efficiency steadily. In terms of the production facilities and especially artificial lift systems, a key indicator enabling efficient operations is mean time between failure. Amongst the most damaging and lifetime shortening factors for artificial lift systems is sand production from the reservoir zone. Especially prone to damage by solid production are sucker rod pumps. Although ranking amongst the most efficient artificial lift methods, effects of sand production may shorten the mean time between failure for sucker rod pumps significantly, and are resulting in costly workover operations. Therefore, one goal for efficient oilfield operations is to limit sand production through sucker rod pumps. This thesis investigates a novel design approach in the form of a swirl desander. The proposed design is validated against existing models and an optimized design iteration determined. The tests are conducted under near field conditions at the Montanuniversitaets pump testing facility. The tests show that a perfectly designed swirl desander can achieve separation efficiencies of up to 95 percent. Furthermore, the optimal design proves robust to pump speed changes. The results are presented in the form of a sensitivity analysis, comparing the tested design variations and pump speeds. Overall, a combination of desander and gravel pack installations could promise an increase in mean time between failure for pumps affected by sand production.
Translated title of the contributionPraktische Validierung eines neuen Desander Designs
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Montanuniversität
  • Hofstätter, Herbert, Supervisor (internal)
  • Langbauer, Clemens, Co-Supervisor (internal)
Award date28 Jun 2019
Publication statusPublished - 2019

Bibliographical note

no embargo


  • Artificial Lift Systems
  • Desander
  • Sand Production
  • Production Engineering
  • efficiency

Cite this