Experimental study of water-in-oil emulsion flow on wax deposition in subsea pipelines
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Experiments were performed to simulate the deposition of wax in the flow of crude oil emulsions in subsea pipeline using a validated flow facility. Two crude samples and their respective formation water from two oil fields in southern Nigeria were used to synthetize two different emulsified crude oil samples (A and B). The trapping of the water globules in the wax deposits dominates the wax deposition rate initially but later the shear removal and the molecular diffusion dominate leading to decrease in the wax deposition rate. As the water (BS& W) composition in the emulsion increases from 10 to 40%, the pour point temperature (PPT) increases from 30 to 41 °C, and the viscosity increases from 40 mPas to 142 mPa at a crude oil temperature of 26 °C. The addition of 45 ppm of long chain acrylate ester co-polymer as pour point depressant depressed the dimensionless wax thickness by 37.5% and 34.3% for the blank emulsified crude oil A and B respectively. The effect of the commercial demulsifier to reduce the wax deposition rate was more successful in crude oil A reducing the wax dimensionless thickness by 58.9% and 43.0% when mixture of 25 ppm of the demulsifier and 45 ppm of long chain acrylate ester co-polymer were added to blank emulsified crude oil A and B respectively. The used demulsifier is more effective in crude oil A compared to crude oil B. Efforts should be made to study the effectiveness of different demulsifiers on each emulsified crude oil before their application for water separation.
Demulsifier Average absolute deviations Pour point depressants Validated flow facility Dispersed water globules
Adeyanju, O.A. and Oyekunle, L. O. (2019)” Experimental Study oWater-in-Oil Emulsion Flow on Wax Deposition in Subsea Pipelines” Petroleum Science and Engineering. 182 (2019) 106294.