Gazprom’s experts take business trip to Astrakhan Oblast
Led by Alexander Ananenkov, Deputy Chairman of the Gazprom Management Committee the Company’s experts took a business trip to the Astrakhan Oblast.
A group of experts visited the key facilities of the Astrakhan gas complex: the Astrakhan gas and condensate field (GCF) and the Gas Processing Plant (GPP).
Having visited the facilities, Alexander Ananenkov held in Astrakhan a meeting dedicated to the future development of the Astrakhan gas complex. The meeting brought together representatives from Gazprom, Gazprom dobycha Astrakhan, Gazprom invest Yug, Gazprom export, Gazprom sera, Gazpromtrans, Gazprom podzemremont Orenburg, Gazprom bureniye, Gazprom razvitiye, Gazenergoset, Gazprom VNIIGAZ, YuzhNIIgiprogaz, NIPIgazpererabotka, Oil and Gas Research Institute under the Russian Academy of Sciences, and Gazprombank.
In his opening speech Alexander Ananenkov stressed that gas processing was directly related to ensuring reliable gas supplies to consumers. As the Cenomanian deposits are nearing depletion and Gazprom is penetrating new hard-to-access reservoirs with natural gas containing a lot of valuable components, the gas processing sector will gain more significance and transform into a major factor of Russia’s gas industry development.
Alexander Ananenkov emphasized that the Astrakhan gas complex was a significant production facility of Gazprom. The complex possesses a vast resource base (gas reserves in the Astrakhan GCF are estimated at 2.4 trillion cubic meters) and embraces the entire process chain of hydrocarbons recovery and processing, turnout of the whole range of products. Therefore, the Company is facing the task to assure steady development of the gas complex over a long-term period.
The meeting participants addressed the issues of gas and gas condensate production in the Astrakhan GCF, as well as maintenance and development of the field’s well stock. A priority is given here to the introduction of advanced technical and technological solutions during wells construction, operation and repair in order to raise their reliability and productivity, as well as to reduce costs and to make the timeframe of construction and repair activities shorter.
It was underlined that application of domestically manufactured import-substituting equipment was an inalienable part of this strategy. Over the recent years Gazprom’s experts, Russia’s leading research institutions and industrial enterprises joined their efforts to arrange production of various types of well equipment that can adequately compete with foreign counterparts. The range of the import-substituting products in use is constantly expanding – development and testing of domestically manufactured hydrogen sulfide-resistant flowlines and tubing are in progress.
The meeting addressed the progress with reconstructing the GPP. Alexander Ananenkov underlined the importance of a comprehensive approach to retrofitting and developing the entire Astrakhan gas complex including production and processing facilities, as well as the need to elaborate the relevant long-term program.
It was highlighted that the Astrakhan gas complex was the major sulfur producer in Russia (74 per cent). The participants discussed the current status of and development prospects for the global and domestic sulfur markets, as well as alternative sulfur utilization technologies, for instance, in road building. Consideration was given to the ways of constructing sulfur storages, both aboveground and underground. The meeting also addressed new types of products in the Astrakhan gas complex.
Based on the meeting results, Gazprom’s specialized subdivisions and subsidiaries were entrusted with the tasks aimed at more efficient operation and development of the Astrakhan gas complex.
The Astrakhan gas complex (AGC) is among the largest ones in Russia. The key facilities of the AGC are the Astrakhan gas and condensate field and the Gas Processing Plant (Gazprom dobycha Astrakhan).
The AGC capacities make it possible to annually produce and process up to 12 billion cubic meters of gas and up to 7.3 million tons of hydrocarbon liquids. The AGC turns out a wide range of products such as dry commercial gas, stable gas condensate, sulfur, gasoline, diesel fuel, fuel oil, liquefied gas and natural gas liquids.
Gazprom dobycha Astrakhan (100 per cent subsidiary of Gazprom) holds the subsurface license for the Astrakhan gas and condensate field put onstream in 1986. The field’s ABC1 reserves account for 2.4 trillion cubic meters of gas and 377 million tons of gas condensate.
The Astrakhan GCF is unique for a high sulfur content in the formation fluid (up to 25 per cent), formation depths (3,800 – 4,000 meters), reservoir temperature (110°C) and pressure (over 600 Ata). By now, the field is only 6.3 per cent developed.