Carbon fiber composites are more and more extensively used in marine fields. In the ocean, corrosion, high pressure, and the strong shearing effect of water underflow place a strict requirement on the performance of marine equipment. Due to the excellent skin resistance and corrosion resistance, carbon fiber has an advantage in the development and expansion of the marine industry.

Subsea Oil & Gas Fields Building

Carbon fiber composite materials can be used as production well pipes, sucker rods, storage tanks, subsea pipelines, decks and other components in oilfield drilling platforms. The manufacturing process is divided into pultrusion and wet winding. Pultrusion is usually for ordinary pipes and connecting pipes, while wet winding is mainly for the surface of storage tanks and pressure vessels, as well as anisotropic flexible pipes. The carbon fiber composite material can be wound and arranged in the armor layer at a specific angle.

Carbon Fiber Composites in Marine Fields 1

The weight of a steel tether for a drilling platform of only 1500m deep can be up to 6500t, however, the density of carbon fiber is 1/4 of ordinary steel. It is obvious that the load and the cost of a drilling platform can be significantly reduced by replacing steel parts with carbon fiber composites. Shuttling in the operation, the sucker rod is easy to fatigue and fracture caused by the imbalanced pressure inside and outside the pipe wall. Carbon fiber composites can solve this problem well. Due to the corrosion resistance, reinforced thermoplastic pipes can reach deeper and survive longer than steel pipes in the sea.

The continuous sucker rod of carbon fiber composite material is structured as a film-like strip with good flexibility. It was first produced and applied by the United States in the 1990s. Using carbon fiber as reinforcement and unsaturated resin as matrix, the composite is formed through pultrution after cross-linking and curing. From 2001 to 2003, a pilot was taken in China Chunlinag Oilfield, using both carbon fiber and ordinary steel sucker rods. Carbon fiber sucker rods can significantly increase the oil output and reduce the load of the motor. Moreover, it is more fatigue-resistant and corrosion-resistant than the steel one and is more suitable for the exploitation of subsea oil fields.

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