Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage (SAGD)

SAGD is one technology that is changing the Oil Sands industry, but requires a continuous and growing supply of high-quality water for steam production.

Bitumen recovery by Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage (SAGD) is done by injecting steam into the formation to reduce bitumen viscosity. The steam condenses generating large quantities of produced water that are discharged from the production process. This produced water has highly challenging physical and chemical properties, including oil, grease, silica, hardness and organics. Regulations on freshwater withdrawal and limitations on produced water disposal force the industry to recycle and re-use more than 95% of the produced water and feed this water back in the steam production process. Establishing a viable water treatment process is therefore fundamental to maximizing the production of SAGD oil extraction.

Robust, reliable water evaporators that are able to address the chemical composition of the water, fouling conditions, scaling, silica precipitation and remote environment are critical to SAGD operating in Alberta Oil Sands.

IDE’s Solutions for SAGD

Leveraging our expertise and 50 years of experience in thermal solutions and 25 years in produced water treatment, IDE is able to address the SAGD industry’s specific needs with robust, reliable and cost-effective horizontal evaporators that are suitable for remote locations and resilient to challenging chemical water compositions.

In the SAGD industry, IDE has aligned with Ecodyne LTD, the leading vendor of lime softeners and conventional treatment solutions. Together, IDE and Ecodyne provide an end-to-end, integrated produced water treatment package.

Offering Unique Benefits to our Partners

  • End-to-end integrated produced water treatment solutions
  • High recovery of produced water for reuse onsite, meeting regulatory requirements
  • Modular, skid mounted, pre-fabricated horizontal evaporators reduce erection time and cost
  • Removable tubes bundles provide faster system turnaround and minimize downtime
  • Reduced power consumption – 30% savings compared to vertical evaporators
  • Horizontal evaporator configuration provides a safer environment for operators

Process Flow Diagram:


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