Understanding The Crude Oil Transportation Process

In the current world, many economies are heavily dependent om petroleum products to power their industries. Technological advances have now made it possible to exploit remote minefields and deliver this precious commodity to far flung markets. The need for an efficient means of crude oil transportation has arisen because it is unlikely for the demand and supply ends of the market to be located in one place.

From the oil field, the product is delivered via pipelines to the loading terminal for tankers or trains. These bulk movers then deliver it to the pipelines that serve the demand side of the market. Due to the sensitive nature of some end products, it is safer to refine the oil on the consumer side than to ferry them over the open seas.

Pipelines are the ideal means of transporting petroleum because they are located underground away from curios eyes. Most field networks converge at the main collection point where the fluid is measured for consistency before being containerized. The consumer side is fitted with booster pumps at predetermined points to guarantee efficient flow to retail points. A single pipeline may be used to transfer more than one product depending on the schedule used by the controller.

It is quite unfortunate that the largest consumers of oil usually have to purchase it from sources located on other continents. Crude from middle east, Africa and Latin America is transported to major consumers by large tankers. Because tankers may accidentally spill some of their cargo, marine authorities all over the world have devised many stringent laws governing this sector.

For this reason, many shipping companies employ collision avoidance and satellite systems to trace the current location of their ships. Developments in technology have allowed the invention of specialized tankers such as the replenishment oiler that fuels moving vessels. All stakeholders in this industry are governed by strict regulations because of the risk they pose to the environment.

most oil exploiters charter renowned shipping companies to move their commodity to demand centers. The agreement may either be voyage, bareboat, time or affreightment drafted. In the former, the hiring firm leases the equipment for usage between the source and destination for his product. He may also opt to hire the vessels for a stipulated period of time during which he purports to have transferred all his cargo.

At the loading point, the cargo mover reservoirs are filled with crude oil introduced through the loading manifold. All tanks have a mechanism that periodically links to the atmosphere to regulate the pressure of the fluid being handled. At the offloading points, the onboard pumps move the crude to awaiting reservoirs offshore. Afterwards, the tank may be cleaned in readiness for the handling of the next liquefied commodity to be moved.

If the crude oil transportation vessel held a less viscous liquid, water may suffice as a cleaning fluid. Sometimes, the water is heated and introduced by a high pressure spraying system all over the inner tank surface. Purging is them done by pumping volumes of an inert gas to remove remaining traces of hydrocarbons. All these processes are performed by the oil washing system onboard.

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