Satellite Separator


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Prior to storage, transportation and refining, water must be removed from the oil/water mixture produced at the wellhead. Gravity operated satellite separators are commonly used. Located at a central collection site to service multiple oil wells, the separator consists of a closed tank with two chambers separated by a baffle extending partially up from the bottom of the tank. The oil/water mixture flows into a settling chamber where gravity causes the oil, water and any entrapped gas to separate. The heavier water settles to the bottom of this chamber and the oil rises to the top. As the oil level rises above the baffle, it spills over into the second chamber for pumping to a storage tank. The water is pumped out before it reaches the top of the baffle and the gas is either flared or piped away for processing, all with through the aid of SOR pressure switches, level switches and differential pressure switches.

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