Despite their low efficiency compared with centrifugal pumps, jet-pumps are highly reliable robust equipment with modest maintenance which is ideal for many applications, mostly in the oil & gas industry. For example, jet-pumps could result attractive compared to other multiphase pump systems in terms of reactivating transport lines of heavy crude oil. Nevertheless, their design method and performance analysis are rarely known in the literature and keep a high experimental component like most of the pumping equipment. Starting with a pump designed by a traditional method, this paper aims to evaluate the effect of multiple geometrical and operational variables that influence the jet-pump performance combining CFD (Computational Fluid Dynamics) simulation and optimization algorithms using commercials software (ANSYS CFX® and PIPEIT® tool). Automatically, the geometric parameters are modified according to the rules of the optimization routines seeking to maximize the flow capacity, respecting restrictions such as energy consumption.
A case study is presented for the preliminary design of a pump to boost flow capacity in a trunk line of a heavy oil field. As preliminary design all simulations were carried out using single phase water flow. With this method, it was possible to quickly evaluate around 400 geometries of jet-pumps. The geometry of the optimum final pump is consistent with other pumps reported by other works. This pump enhances the fluid capacity of the line in 17% over the traditional design for the same parameters of power or consumed energy.