EnCana Resources is enjoying economic success at their Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage (SAGD) research facility at Senlac, Saskatchewan. This has been achieved largely due to the successful application of new and innovative ideas and technologies. During the summer of 2001, PanCanadian Energy (now EnCana Resources) made use of a novel buried piping technology at the Senlac Thermal Project to solve the problem of connecting distant well pairs to the processing plant. The four-kilometer pipeline system accommodated a thermal growth of approximately 12 meters over its entire length using buried expansion loops and “Z” bends. The pipeline was installed at an estimated 30% cost savings over conventional above ground methods. This paper summarizes the successful installation of this unique piping technology at Senlac and its applicability to future commercial SAGD projects in the context of the heavy oil reserves in Alberta.

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