Usually, water is the most significant by-product of oil and gas production: water is trapped in underground formations and brought to the surface along with oil and gas. As oil fields mature, the amount of produced water increases. Mature wells can deliver up to 90% water and only 10% oil. The extracted substance is therefore an oil-water mixture that has to be treated to extract the oil and to re-use or dispose of the water.
For the separation of oil from the water surface, there are numerous solutions available on the market. The Epuramat technology in contrast, is primarily focused on the subsequent separation of dissolved oil particles from the water. Here existing market solutions show either the disadvantages of huge space requirements as it is for example in the case of evaporation or they consume a large amount of energy or chemicals. By the combined use of the solid-liquid separator ExSep® and a specially developed cross-flow membrane filtration, oil particles in a size of up to 0.02 µ can be separated without adding any chemicals. This process only requires a trans-membrane pressure (TMP) of 0.3 bar, leading to very low operating costs. The effluent resulting from a treatment by the Epuramat system shows no chemical residues and is therefore available for the re-use as process water. The separated and also chemical-free oil can be processed for further use in the refinery.