What is a water cut meter and where is it used?

The major problem in the production of heavy oil is to determine the amount of water and to separate the water from the oil. The water cut in the oil field refers to the mass percentage of water in all the liquids. So in oil, we can see a good amount of water so crude oil can be considered as crude oil and water. The water cut is an important process for crude oil production so that we could determine the water content in the reservoir fluids. Water cut is mostly described or indicated in percentage. The water cut meters are used to determine the percentage of water in the oil. Water cut meters are inevitable in the oil industry and by using this device we can check the amount of water and also by the help of a ‘separator’ we can also separate the oil from water.

How to select a water cut meter

  • It must be selected according to the fluid type
  • The fluid temperature must be considered while selecting it
  • The selection must be done according to how it can be installed
  • The material used for construction
  • Accuracy and repeatability
  • Operating power
  • Response time
  • Communication protocols
  • Number of sensors
  • The pressure that the device can handle
  • It must be selected according to the enclosure protection

What are the functions of a water cut meter?

  • It must detect the water content in oil
  • It must be able to detect slug
  • It must be capable to determine the concentration of oil in water
  • Water fraction tracking

How does a water cut meter work?

Mostly all of the water cut meters would use the electrical properties between the hydrocarbons and water to determine the percentage of water in the oil. So by using this property a water cut meter can determine a small amount of water in the oil. Some water cut meter has sensors to determine the water content and how is it distributed in the pipe.

What is a high water cut?

A high water cut means the amount of water in the oil is high, so if a reservoir has a high water-cut, then it means the water content in the oil is high and it would decrease the oil quality. So during these conditions, we must determine how to reduce the water cut production.  

What are the applications of water cut meter?

  • Detection of water in fuel oil
  • Monitoring of oil & gas production
  • It can be used to monitor petroleum loading or transferring
  • Fuel purity can be determined
  • It can be used for slug detection
  • It can be used to monitor ship fuel
  • Water cut meter is also used for sub-sea production
  • It can be used to determine water content in any oil-based liquid
News Reporter
post-graduate in Electronics & communication