Improve Your Compression and Process System Operating Efficiencies – Part 2

Retrofit: Recylindering/Restaging

You have a compression package out in the field that’s done its job for years: efficiently, reliably and at a reasonable operating cost. All things considered, you couldn’t ask for more.

With time, though, things change. The package gradually loses efficiency, your marketing strategy changes, or the package doesn’t suit the wet gas plays that have become the norm in western North America. You decide to remove it from service and buy something new.

Allan Anderson’s advice: assess your options first.

“If the operating conditions change out in the field, and conditions are now outside of the design envelope of that existing unit, you might be able to do a retrofit instead of buying new,” says Anderson, Compass’ Retrofit Divisional Manager. “We can do a recylindering and restaging of the unit to accommodate those new conditions.”

Anderson leads a dedicated Retrofit team comprised of six industry experts, with over 80 years of combined compression experience. Roughly 75% of Compass retrofits are done in the field, with the rest executed at Compass’ facilities in Calgary, or Grande Prairie, Alberta, or Casper, Wyoming,

As Anderson sees it, gas producers who buy new without first assessing their options could be missing an opportunity.

“It’s a fraction of the price to do a retrofit rather than build new,” he says. “It’s not just the cost savings of the retrofit – it’s all the other associated costs of having a new unit installed at site. Our quotes are transparent and very detailed, so you can make the right decision with confidence.”

“Another factor is time. The customer does have to take a loss of production to bring the unit down to complete the retrofit, but we take a close look at schedule risks and ensure our customers are aware of these, so we can both agree on how to handle these potential risks up front.”

The Compass retrofit team has deep experience with a vast range of compression and process equipment – from 1970s technology up to the newest equipment.

“A lot of the older equipment that’s currently in operation is underutilized,” says Anderson. “Every case is different, but there might be a way to optimize the unit to get more production out of it. We can review current operating conditions and provide recommendations on how we can optimize the compressor to better suit your needs.”

Recently, as part of a normal day, the Compass Calgary retrofit shop was preparing a sweet-to-sour conversion quote on a series of compression packages, and several restaging projects were nearing completion. Engine swaps and emissions control modifications are also often in the mix.

For Anderson and his team, the variety and technical challenge of retrofit is a big part of the attraction.

“I’m definitely passionate about this work,” says Anderson.” I like fact that you never know what challenges you get from day to day.”