A Comprehensive Guide to Custody Transfer

Custody transfer in the Oil & Gas industry addresses the transaction that involves carrying physical substances from one operator to another. The transaction includes transferring raw and refined petroleum, crude oil, LNG and more between ships, tanks, tankers and other segments of the production unit.

In fluid measurement, custody transfer refers to the metering point, where the fluid is measured and then set off to sale from one party to another. Here, accuracy is given prime importance by both the company delivering the items and the company procuring the items.

Due to a high level of accuracy, the flow meters are approved by higher authorities before they are brought for operations. These transfers can happen at different points, including transferring oil from an oil production unit to a railcar, ship, truck, railcar and even to the destination.

What it involves?

It typically involves:

• Government taxation and regulations
• Industry standards
• Contractual agreements between parties
• National metrology standards

What are the components?

Custody transfer is not just meant for flow meters; it is designed and engineered for various applications. The components are:

• Flow computers
• multiple meters/meter runs
• Supporting automation
• Quality systems
• Calibrations

What is a custody transfer meter?

The ultrasonic flow meter is by far the most popular flow meter due to its low maintenance and high accuracy. These meters report and calculate volumetric flow rates. Furthermore, another benefit is that they have high turndown capability, negligible pressure drop and can run within different pressures, applications, viscosities and fluids. Ultrasonic flow meters do not have any movable parts, unlike other mechanical flow meters. They are easier to install and need minimum maintenance.

Now that you know what a custody transfer is, you can easily operate in the industry, following the standard rules and regulations.

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