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Solids Dewatering, Transport, and Disposal - Goals and Objectives of FSM Module 9 (B-FSM-152)

We now move on to Facilities Sand Management training module FSM-M9 pertaining to solids (slurry) dewatering, transport, and disposal. The module goals include the following items;

  • Clearly define dewatering, transport, and disposal and their processes in a solids handling system
  • Show that design of the entire solids handling system should start with clear identification of the disposal route
  • Provide guidelines for combining steps and simplifying overall design

For those that may have recently started reading this blog series I will restate some of the background information so that everyone understands the basis of this technology series.

Facilities Sand Management (FSM)

In this series, which started July 28, 2017 with blog post B-FSM-001, I am covering the entire contents of my training course entitled Facilities Sand Management. This is a training course originally designed for the Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE) and has been given both at SPE and private-corporate events around the world. This is a 2-3 day course that covers both the design and operating philosophy, as well as unit-operations, for handling sand and solids in oil & gas production at the operating facilities. Some basic assumptions are as follows;

  • Facilities: oil & gas upstream surface/subsea equipment for separation, cleaning, and energy addition (e.g. wellhead to custody transfer)
  • Sand: tiny loose pieces of rock
  • Management: to handle or direct with a degree of skill

FSM is not simply a waste stream treatment exercise…it is a critical Flow Assurance issue.

The stated objective is to increase / maximize hydrocarbons production…while reducing / minimizing operating costs.

Step Three of the Five Steps of Sand Management

The Five Steps of Sand Management have been covered in previous blog posts – for example B-FSM-034 and B-FSM-040.

Dewatering, transport, and disposal are Steps 4 and 5 in this methodology and were introduced in blog posts B-FSM-038 and B-FSM-039. These are necessary steps to properly get the removed sand away from the facility and not hold-up production.

This series of posts will cover the why, what, and how of solids dewatering, transport, and disposal.


  1. Rawlins, C.H. and Wang, I. 2001. “Design and Installation of a Sand-Separation and -Handling System for a Gulf of Mexico Oil Production Facility”. SPE Production and Facilities, August, pp. 134-140. https://doi.org/10.2118/72999-PA
  2. Rawlins, C.H. 2019. “Enhanced Production Through Surface Facilities Sand Management.” SPE Distinguished Lecturer presentation. Link here

Next week I will start with the role of dewatering, transport, and disposal – including the 80/20 rule.

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