One major problem in the progressive development of gas field is the expanding of gas gathering pipeline network, especially when the existing gathering pipeline system cannot satisfy the production requirements of the new wells. How to design the expanding scheme of the new block, and how to determine the best linking between the new wells and the existing pipeline network can be challenging for designers due to the complexity of the coupling relationship of the variables and strong nonlinearity of the hydraulic characteristics. To our best knowledge, few studies have been done on this issue.

In this study, to expand a gathering pipeline network in a gas field, an optimal design method is proposed considering the hydraulic characteristics of the network with an objective function that maximizes the yearly profit. The connection scheme of the new production wells is obtained by employing a genetic algorithm (GA). This method is applied to a real case study of a gas gathering pipeline system in China. To find the optimal parameter combination in GA, three key parameters includes population size, crossover probability, and mutation probability are tested. Moreover, we also choose the method from previous research which using minimum pipeline length as objective, and apply it on the same example for comparison. The results show superiority of our method in fully utilizing the capacity of gas field while meeting the production requirements.

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