NEPTUNE Advanced Subsea Flow Assurance Insulation System

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I have no idea how subsea oil production works but with me is the news that Dow Oil & Gas has launched the NEPTUNE™ Advanced Subsea Flow Assurance Insulation System.  The  technology is engineered to withstand the harsh conditions associated with subsea oil production, experienced in Africa. The system is now commercially available for subsea architecture applications through Dow’s global qualified coater network, with line pipe and field joint applications to be available soon in Africa…please read the release below:

A simple, complete system designed for line pipe, field joint and subsea architecture applications from the wellhead to the delivery point, the NEPTUNE™ System outperforms existing subsea flow assurance wet insulation technologies, combining excellent thermal properties with the highest temperature performance end-to-end: from -40°C (-40°F) up to 160°C (320°F) during installation and use, at depths of up to 4,000 meters.

This new system allows for reaching wells that are becoming deeper and hotter, such as the case of subsea wells in offshore Africa. The higher reservoir temperatures need an insulation which can cope with this effectively, as the deep water is very cold, yet the depth of the wells below the earth’s crust means they experiences extreme heat. The NEPTUNE™ System will help to address and overcome the previous problems experienced in the region, as it serves as insulation against these extreme temperatures which can change abruptly. 

“As subsea exploration efforts in the region require wells to be drilled deeper than ever before, the resulting rise in downhole temperature creates a need for reliable insulation that can effectively handle harsh conditions associated with this type of oil production,” said Antoine Samaha, commercial director Middle East & Africa, Dow Oil & Gas, a business unit of The Dow Chemical Company. “The NEPTUNE system combines an ability to resist extreme temperatures with reliability, to create a technologically superior solution that builds on Dow’s extensive track record in the oil and gas industry.”


Designed in response to direct requests from offshore operators, the NEPTUNE System is the result of a Dow-led multi-million-dollar, multi-year research and development effort.  It is based on an entirely new chemistry developed by Dow for this application: a proprietary, hybrid polyether thermoset. It has undergone full-scale production trials by globally recognized and respected flow assurance insulation system coaters and additionally, the material has been rigorously tested to ensure it meets operators’ stringent design requirements for deepwater oil production.

Compatible with current industry production and installation methods, the NEPTUNE Flow Assurance Insulation system is an easy, all-in-one system with just two layers:

  • NEPTUNE™ FBE Anti-Corrosion Coating, a fusion-bonded epoxy based on patented Dow resin technology
  • NEPTUNE™ Flow Assurance Insulation Coating, a proprietary, hybrid polyether thermoset material.

Competitive technologies can require up to seven layers. The dual-layer composition of the NEPTUNE System provides a distinct advantage by eliminating the need for a separate adhesive tie layer, simplifying the entire application process and reducing the potential for error.

“Our customers asked for an advanced flow assurance insulation system to withstand the increasingly harsh conditions they encounter in deepwater oil production, and we delivered,” said Larry Ryan, global general manager, Dow Oil & Gas.  “NEPTUNE™ Technology builds on 25 years of success with Dow HYPERLAST™ technology, with more than 500 references worldwide, but now takes a giant step forward. The market knowledge, chemistry expertise and innovation capabilities of Dow – combined with the application expertise of the coaters with whom we have collaborated – have enabled us to deliver a flow assurance wet insulation solution with the widest temperature range available on the market today.”

NEPTUNE™ Advanced Subsea Flow Assurance Insulation System

Installation method Reel, S-lay, J-lay
Depth rating at least 4,000 m
Subsea service temperature, °C -40 to 160
Thermal conductivity under SST conditions 0.152
Density (ASTM D792, 23°C) 1.1
Heat capacity (ASTM E1269, 0 to 160°C) 1.2 to 1.7

160°C at 300 bar for 28 days


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Kennedy Kachwanya
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Kennedy Kachwanya is a technology blogger interested in mobile phones both smart and dumb, mobile apps, mobile money, social media, startups ecosystem and digital Savannah. New media must not forget the strength of old tech.
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