Subsea Heat Exchangers only operate in offshore applications. They use the seawater as a coolant. It is the natural convection of seawater that is used as the driving force; no mechanical force is required for the operation. This eliminates power costs and contributes to a more energy-efficient operation of the platform.
In addition, because the Heat Exchangers are subsea, no space is required on the platform, resulting in smaller and more economically attractive platforms.
On offshore platforms both seawater and ambient air are almost unlimited sources for absorbing the heat surplus generated by the processes on the platform.
Air-Cooled Coolers or Condensers are required to dispatch waste heat to the ambient air requires. Although this is a sound way for cooling, the equipment requires quite a bit of plot space, which is expensive on platforms. In addition, the cooling fans require energy, maintenance and spare parts.
Using seawater for cooling requires (far) less plot space. There are basically two ways of cooling with seawater. The water can be pumped to the Heat Exchanger, or the Heat Exchanger can be brought into the water.
Our Subsea Heat Exchangers do not require plot space and do not use pumps. The seawater around the cooler is heated, creating a natural draft in the sea as an engine for cooling. In addition, we have extensive experience with corrosion-prevention systems.
Subsea Heat Exchangers have the benefit of no driving power cost. And surplus heat on offshore platforms can be transferred to ambient air or seawater. If the plot area is limited on a platform, transfer to seawater remains a solution.
If the platform is unmanned – and regular maintenance is not an option - Subsea Heat Exchangers are the preferred solution. They are virtually maintenance-free, use seawater for cooling and do not take up space on the platform.
By installing a Subsea Heat Exchanger instead of a conventional Air-Cooled Cooler or Shell & Tube Heat Exchanger, you will save 100% of the original required platform space. The Subsea Heat Exchanger is installed subsea and therefore does not require any platform space. Subsea Heat Exchangers also have the advantage of not requiring driving power and hardly any maintenance.
Subsea cooling is unfortunately not protected against biological pollution. The rate of biological pollution is highly dependent on the location of the platform - around the equator, or near the poles, or somewhere in between - the depth of the sea and the level of the Heat Exchanger. This means that a specific solution must be devised for each project. This requires close cooperation between our customer experts and our specialists. Pre-engineering is necessary before a sound and solid design can be presented. However, keep in mind that any maintenance interval for a Subsea Heat Exchanger will be significantly longer than the maintenance interval for a seawater pump.
How we came up with a spot saving and maintenance free solution.
We helped Petroleos Mexicanos with the right cooling solution for the Litoral-A project.
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