econ industries services GmbH

Drilling oil recovery from drill cuttings XXL - Case study

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Courtesy of econ industries services GmbH

Worlds largest treatment facility for recovery of drilling fluids

The two largest oil & gas companies in Azerbaijan engaged econ industries to design and build the world's largest recycling facility for drilling mud. The brand-new Waste Management Center is located south of Baku and consists of two identical VacuDry® 12,000 x 2 plants, capable of treating 240 tons of drilling mud daily. The plants were manufactured in Germany and from there shipped to Azerbaijan for erection and commissioning in 2016.

The complete scope was managed and supervised by econ's engineers who also trained local staff for the 3-shift operation. The vacuum distillation process involves temperatures below 250 °C and at partial vacuum at 50 mbar. This unique combination of vacuum, low process temperatures and nitrogen blanketing ensures the highest quality of the recovered oil. This combination together with a highly energy efficient thermal oil heating unit enables a very low energy consumption.

The VacuDry technology is flexible regarding the type of input materials and hence the plant was designed to also treat contaminated soil and other industrial wastes. The centralized treatment facility is the most economic and environmentally friendly solution due to low treatment costs, high value of recycled synthetical drilling oils, extremely clean solids and water and a low carbon footprint.

Design characteristics

  • Highest flexibility - no limitation regarding oil, water and solid content
  • High quality of recovered drilling oil - low temperature, vacuum and nitrogen prevent deterioration of oil
  • Low energy demand - highly efficient thermal oil heating and vacuum system
  • Full process control - due to online monitored batch process
  • Highest safety level - CE and ATEX certified
  • Low wear and tear - few moving parts, low friction and slow-moving agitators

Key Facts

  • Vacuum dryer type : 4 xVacuDry® 12,000
  • Batch size : 4x10,000 litres
  • Throughput capacity : lOt/h
  • Heating system : 2 x 2,000 kW / 350 °C thermal oil units, heated with natural gas
  • Operating pressure : 50-800mbar(abs)
  • Output material : TPH C10-C40 < 1,000 mg/kg

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