A unified model is proposed for the prediction of flow behavior during production and transportation of gas, oil, and water through wellbores and pipelines. In gas/oil/water three-phase-pipe flow, the phase distributions and hydrodynamics are described on the basis of two criteria: gas/liquid flow pattern and oil/water mixing status. The three-phase flow is treated as gas/liquid two-phase flow, if the two liquids are fully mixed, or as a three-layer stratified flow at low flow rates in horizontal or slightly inclined pipes. Most three-phase flows fall between the two extremes, partially mixed with slippage between the two liquid phases. Closure relationships describing the distribution between the liquid phases, namely mixing and inversion, are proposed. The model predictions are compared with experimental data of gas/oil/water pipe flows. Significant improvements are observed over the predictions by the two-phase unified model of Zhang et al. (2003a), which assumes a fully mixed liquid phase.

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