Effect of hydrate anti-agglomerants on water-in-crude oil emulsion stability

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Under high-pressure and low-temperature conditions, gas hydrate shells may form and grow at the interface of water droplets in water-in-oil emulsions. Such hydrate formation can enable downstream agglomeration and slurry viscosification, thus increasing the risk of hydrate blockage. Therefore, emulsion stability represents a critical parameter in understanding this overall flow behaviour. In this study, the impact of three common and widely-used industrial anti-agglomerants from three different suppliers (AA-1, AA-2 and AA-3—exact composition is commercially sensitive) on 30 wt% water-in-oil (W/O) emulsion stability was investigated. Bench-top nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) pulsed field gradient (PFG) methods were used to measure the droplet size distributions (DSDs) of the W/O emulsions as a complement to bottle stability test. In the absence of hydrate anti-agglomerants, based on visual observation, 85% of the original W/O emulsion remained after 10 h. In the presence of AA-1 and AA-2, 94% of the original emulsion was retained; in contrast, AA-3 acted to destabilise the emulsion with only 64% of the original emulsion visually evident after 10 h. These results were substantiated by PFG NMR measurements which showed substantial changes in droplet size as a function of sample height for the W/O emulsion formulated with AA-3. Interestingly the W/O emulsion formulated with AA-1, while very stable, was characterised by comparatively very large water droplets, indicative of a complex multiple water-in-oil-in-water (W/O/W) emulsion microstructure. AA-2 forms stable emulsion with small droplets of water dispersed in the oil phase. Our results provide insight into a wide range of potential impacts of AA addition on an industrial crude oil pipeline, in which AA-1 resulted in a complex W/O/W multiple emulsion, AA-2 behaved as an emulsifier and AA-3 behaved as a demulsifier.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Petroleum Exploration and Production Technology
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 23 May 2019

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emulsion
Hydrates
Emulsions
crude oil
Crude oil
Water
oil
water
droplet
effect
nuclear magnetic resonance
Nuclear magnetic resonance
Magnetic resonance measurement
Oils
Gas hydrates
oil pipeline
Gradient methods
Bottles
gas hydrate
agglomeration

Cite this

@article{dce6750a1c4b46f3ba78cea64163a658,
title = "Effect of hydrate anti-agglomerants on water-in-crude oil emulsion stability",
abstract = "Under high-pressure and low-temperature conditions, gas hydrate shells may form and grow at the interface of water droplets in water-in-oil emulsions. Such hydrate formation can enable downstream agglomeration and slurry viscosification, thus increasing the risk of hydrate blockage. Therefore, emulsion stability represents a critical parameter in understanding this overall flow behaviour. In this study, the impact of three common and widely-used industrial anti-agglomerants from three different suppliers (AA-1, AA-2 and AA-3—exact composition is commercially sensitive) on 30 wt{\%} water-in-oil (W/O) emulsion stability was investigated. Bench-top nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) pulsed field gradient (PFG) methods were used to measure the droplet size distributions (DSDs) of the W/O emulsions as a complement to bottle stability test. In the absence of hydrate anti-agglomerants, based on visual observation, 85{\%} of the original W/O emulsion remained after 10 h. In the presence of AA-1 and AA-2, 94{\%} of the original emulsion was retained; in contrast, AA-3 acted to destabilise the emulsion with only 64{\%} of the original emulsion visually evident after 10 h. These results were substantiated by PFG NMR measurements which showed substantial changes in droplet size as a function of sample height for the W/O emulsion formulated with AA-3. Interestingly the W/O emulsion formulated with AA-1, while very stable, was characterised by comparatively very large water droplets, indicative of a complex multiple water-in-oil-in-water (W/O/W) emulsion microstructure. AA-2 forms stable emulsion with small droplets of water dispersed in the oil phase. Our results provide insight into a wide range of potential impacts of AA addition on an industrial crude oil pipeline, in which AA-1 resulted in a complex W/O/W multiple emulsion, AA-2 behaved as an emulsifier and AA-3 behaved as a demulsifier.",
keywords = "Hydrate anti-agglomerants, Nuclear magnetic resonance, Surface-active agents, Water-in-oil emulsion",
author = "Azlinda Azizi and Johns, {Michael L.} and Aman, {Zachary M.} and May, {Eric F.} and Ling, {Nicholas N.A.} and Hazlina Husin",
year = "2019",
month = "5",
day = "23",
doi = "10.1007/s13202-019-0691-0",
language = "English",
journal = "Journal of Petroleum Exploration and Production Technology",
issn = "2190-0558",
publisher = "Springer-Verlag London Ltd.",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Effect of hydrate anti-agglomerants on water-in-crude oil emulsion stability

AU - Azizi, Azlinda

AU - Johns, Michael L.

AU - Aman, Zachary M.

AU - May, Eric F.

AU - Ling, Nicholas N.A.

AU - Husin, Hazlina

PY - 2019/5/23

Y1 - 2019/5/23

N2 - Under high-pressure and low-temperature conditions, gas hydrate shells may form and grow at the interface of water droplets in water-in-oil emulsions. Such hydrate formation can enable downstream agglomeration and slurry viscosification, thus increasing the risk of hydrate blockage. Therefore, emulsion stability represents a critical parameter in understanding this overall flow behaviour. In this study, the impact of three common and widely-used industrial anti-agglomerants from three different suppliers (AA-1, AA-2 and AA-3—exact composition is commercially sensitive) on 30 wt% water-in-oil (W/O) emulsion stability was investigated. Bench-top nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) pulsed field gradient (PFG) methods were used to measure the droplet size distributions (DSDs) of the W/O emulsions as a complement to bottle stability test. In the absence of hydrate anti-agglomerants, based on visual observation, 85% of the original W/O emulsion remained after 10 h. In the presence of AA-1 and AA-2, 94% of the original emulsion was retained; in contrast, AA-3 acted to destabilise the emulsion with only 64% of the original emulsion visually evident after 10 h. These results were substantiated by PFG NMR measurements which showed substantial changes in droplet size as a function of sample height for the W/O emulsion formulated with AA-3. Interestingly the W/O emulsion formulated with AA-1, while very stable, was characterised by comparatively very large water droplets, indicative of a complex multiple water-in-oil-in-water (W/O/W) emulsion microstructure. AA-2 forms stable emulsion with small droplets of water dispersed in the oil phase. Our results provide insight into a wide range of potential impacts of AA addition on an industrial crude oil pipeline, in which AA-1 resulted in a complex W/O/W multiple emulsion, AA-2 behaved as an emulsifier and AA-3 behaved as a demulsifier.

AB - Under high-pressure and low-temperature conditions, gas hydrate shells may form and grow at the interface of water droplets in water-in-oil emulsions. Such hydrate formation can enable downstream agglomeration and slurry viscosification, thus increasing the risk of hydrate blockage. Therefore, emulsion stability represents a critical parameter in understanding this overall flow behaviour. In this study, the impact of three common and widely-used industrial anti-agglomerants from three different suppliers (AA-1, AA-2 and AA-3—exact composition is commercially sensitive) on 30 wt% water-in-oil (W/O) emulsion stability was investigated. Bench-top nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) pulsed field gradient (PFG) methods were used to measure the droplet size distributions (DSDs) of the W/O emulsions as a complement to bottle stability test. In the absence of hydrate anti-agglomerants, based on visual observation, 85% of the original W/O emulsion remained after 10 h. In the presence of AA-1 and AA-2, 94% of the original emulsion was retained; in contrast, AA-3 acted to destabilise the emulsion with only 64% of the original emulsion visually evident after 10 h. These results were substantiated by PFG NMR measurements which showed substantial changes in droplet size as a function of sample height for the W/O emulsion formulated with AA-3. Interestingly the W/O emulsion formulated with AA-1, while very stable, was characterised by comparatively very large water droplets, indicative of a complex multiple water-in-oil-in-water (W/O/W) emulsion microstructure. AA-2 forms stable emulsion with small droplets of water dispersed in the oil phase. Our results provide insight into a wide range of potential impacts of AA addition on an industrial crude oil pipeline, in which AA-1 resulted in a complex W/O/W multiple emulsion, AA-2 behaved as an emulsifier and AA-3 behaved as a demulsifier.

KW - Hydrate anti-agglomerants

KW - Nuclear magnetic resonance

KW - Surface-active agents

KW - Water-in-oil emulsion

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U2 - 10.1007/s13202-019-0691-0

DO - 10.1007/s13202-019-0691-0

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JO - Journal of Petroleum Exploration and Production Technology

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SN - 2190-0558

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