Sand Control FAQ

What is sand control in oil and gas?

Sand control is a critical process in the oil and gas industry to manage and prevent the influx of sand or solids from the reservoir into the wellbore during production. When oil and gas are extracted, sand or other solid particles come up with the fluids. This can cause damage to equipment, reducing productivity, and potentially hindering the extraction process.

How does SDI help flowback and production operations with sand control?

Our sand control equipment has logged millions of hours on North American well sites and provides our clients reliable and proven performance. Our gravity Desanding technology has several advantages versus competing technology (Spherical, Cyclonic, or filter designs) they include:

No moving parts, baffles or filters = Near zero differential pressure yielding Higher IP’s and far fewer components to get damaged or break or needing repair or replacement mid-job.

A proprietary design to lower the well stream’s velocity & turbulence = Unmatched predictable separation efficiency using physics (Stokes Law)

Vessels up to 24″ diameter and 20ft long, allowing maximum retention time = Separation of multiple sizes of particles and maximum solids capture.

The Sand Sentry sand detection system, the industry’s most accurate sand production evaluation tool = unmatched information & data, enables cost-reducing decisions in real-time.

All-inclusive pricing & support = Worry-free production and facilities integrity management.

Multiple locations throughout Canada & the USA = Coverage of any sized project in any basin.

We regularly conduct field studies and equipment tests and publicly share our case studies. Every interaction, every day, our employees conduct themselves with integrity that safely protects them, others, property, and the environment.

What is the maximum sand holding capacity?

Our fleet of horizontal desanders have a solution for any well operation sand/liquid capacity. With our broad range of equipment in various sizes and pressure classes, we can hold up to 1,905kg/ 4,200 Pounds of sand before the units need to be cleaned.

What is the difference between horizontal vs. cyclone desanders for sand control? 

Our gravity desanding technology uses temporary phase separation and a significant reduction in velocity to safely remove the sand from multi-phase well production. The vessel’s barrel or the body does not have any baffles or plates to slow the flow down; this allows for near-zero pressure drop across our vessels. (<15 psi)

Cyclonic technology is designed to be most efficient in single phase & steady-state production; it significantly increases the velocity of the flow to force solid particles to the outer edge of the components. By forcing the well stream into a confined space and narrowing the flow path the resulting differential can be as high as 200psi-400psi (depending on the manufacturer and well flow characteristics) In reality once multi-phase production (Gas & Liquids) are introduced, the cyclonic action can breakdown and cause performance fluctuations that affect separation efficiency and differential pressure.

What is the differential pressure?


What is the maximum sand capture performance?

Our engineered design software allows us to simulate our performance pre-job to ensure success. We calculate all of our pre-job reports with a minimum design standard of 99%+ capture efficiency of 100 mesh (150 micron) solids. The flexibility of the gravity desanding technology allows the capture of solids larger and smaller than the design specs or the frac composition; this ensures unmatched separation efficiency results and maximum protection for surface facilities.

How do you measure sand?

Sand Sentry is a web-based and on-site sand monitoring system. This software monitors sand production from oil and gas wells. Measurements are provided accurately to the pound or litre, not in approximate ranges. Access your data anytime, anywhere. Additionally, be notified by SMS or email when cleanouts are required. This system can be integrated into a well site SCADA system to automate shutdown protocol. It results in minimal downtime, saving you time and money.

What does a monthly desander rental include?

Our monthly rate includes all monitoring and regular wear and tear; more importantly, our sand control equipment has no redress charges at the end of the install. Save uncertainty with our equipment design, expert quality, unmatched service quality, and customer support.

Does SDI have sand control units in my area? 

SDI has a large fleet of units in Canada and the USA. We have field locations in Beaverlodge and Three Hills Alberta. In the USA, we are located in Midland, TX, Pittsburgh, PA, Oklahoma City, OK and Denver, CO. We have been building and expanding our Desander fleet since 2001. Specialized Desanders has the equipment to make your project a success.


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