Vacu-Press International, Inc.  

Vacu-Press International manufactured natural gas compression cylinders that were fitted to walking beam oil pumps. The concept involved the fact that natural gas under pressure could inhibit the flow of oil from the reservoir to the well bore. Since this gas could in most instances not be vented to the atmosphere, some way needed to be found to draw the gas out of the annular space between the casing and the production tubing and move it to a gas collection and sales line. Because this gas was usually under relatively low pressure, (5-30 psi) the natural pressure was not sufficient to "buck" a 200-psi gas transmission line. The Vacu-Press cylinder drew gas from the well on the up-stroke of the pumping unit under partial vacuum and forced it out on the down-stroke under pressure up to that necessary to force it into a sales line.

The unique assets of the company included the plans for the specialized brackets required to attach the cylinder to the pumping unit and the methodology to accurately size the compression cylinder and estimate the benefits to the producer of installing the unit.

IMS Quantum (then Fletcher Associates) developed the oil and gas production decline model used to estimate the effect of reducing natural gas pressure at the well bore. Increasing the pressure gradient from the reservoir to the well increased the flow of oil. The Integrated Decision Model computed increases in oil and gas production, fixed and variable costs, and the discounted net financial benefits of unit installation.

One aspect of the model that became very helpful in choosing the appropriate size of unit for each application was a section of the model that computed horsepower requirements for each unit under specific pressures. The model automatically plotted power requirements throughout the compression and vacuum cycles. One could easily decide if the engine on the specific pumping unit had enough excess power to drive a given sized cylinder at the desired pressures.

While other manufacturers offered similar units, the competitive advantage that Vacu-Press enjoyed was the ability to engage the engineering staffs of large oil companies in a technical conversation concerning the concrete benefits of the product. The model also offered the ability to study the unitís activity through time to evaluate its actual performance.

IMS Quantum specializes in the development of technology-based models that show how functionality relates to financial benefits. These Integrated Decision Models can yield considerable competitive advantage in technical markets where precise answers can be offered to address the customerís major concerns.

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