Desanders Stop Sand Before It Stops You
June 10, 2014 – Profiler Magazine
Formerly known as Specialized Tech Inc., Specialized Desanders Inc. underwent recapitalization in September 2013 to obtain the financing required to rapidly grow its business. With more access to capital, the company is now carrying out an aggressive plan to double its fleet of high-pressure desanders within three years, while expanding into new markets including the U.S. The company, which changed its name to Specialized Desanders Inc. (SDI) in December 2013, is currently establishing its presence in the Marcellus Basin in the northeast U.S.
SDI is exclusively focused on providing engineered solutions to remove particulate matter from high-pressure, multi-phase flow streams, primarily from gas and liquids-rich gas wells. “Our top priority, bar none, is safety,” says SDI Vice President Craig McDonald.
All equipment is certified and ABSA-registered to ASME Section VIII, Div 1 and ASME B31.3 codes. Operators and owners can rest assured that for SDI, the safe operation of the pressure equipment takes priority over being the lowest-cost or lowest-bid provider. In more than 12 years of desander service, SDI has not had a pressure equipment failure.
The trend to drilling long, horizontal wells requiring multiple frac stages has fuelled rapid growth in demand for SDI’s patented horizontal desanders. Clients’ targeting of liquids-rich shale deposits, which rely more on hydraulic fracturing processes, has been a big driver of the company’s recent growth.
Producing frac sand during well cleanup can damage surface equipment, and as the pressure decreases over time, the velocities of the gas-liquid mixtures actually increase, resulting in even more erosive fluid flows. From the earliest days of production, SDI desanders operate with negligible pressure drops to ensure safe operation of the surface facilities—while capturing the maximum amount of production during the well’s initial high productivity. These desanders have been designed to operate over wide flow rate ranges, meaning they can remain effective over a long period of time—yet their best efficiency is at the earliest stage of production, when the flowing pressure is highest.
Removing all particulates, even after a well has been cleaned up following a frac, protects downstream assets such as chokes and valves and reduces the repair and maintenance costs associated with high velocity flow streams.
Founded by three energy sector veterans in 2001, SDI opened its doors in Three Hills, Alta., and later added an operations base near Grande Prairie, Alta., in order to better serve its clients. Today, SDI’s clients cover a large geographical area in the Western Canadian Sedimentary Basin, stretching from Calgary to Fort Liard in northeastern British Columbia.
SDI continuously monitors the location of its equipment fleet using GPS tracking. Thanks to web-based monitoring, it can even advise operators on when the desander requires servicing.
From day one, the SDI founders wanted to provide clients with a fee-for-service business, for a fixed monthly charge covering all of the costs involved. This continues today with SDI’s pricing structure. Most, if not all, of the technical support, regulatory filing requirements, certifications and normal wear-and-tear costs are covered in the monthly service fee. The only variable costs that customers pay are related to equipment transportation and tie-in.
Don’t be surprised by sand flows—call for a desander today.