(533t) Application of Waste Materials As Demulsifier for Oil/Water Separation | AIChE

(533t) Application of Waste Materials As Demulsifier for Oil/Water Separation


Kamal, M. S. - Presenter, King Fahd University of Petroleum & Minerals
Adewunmi, A., King Fahd University of Petroleum & Minerals
Patil, S., KFUPM
Hussain, S., King Fahd University of Petroleum & Minerals
Gbadamosi, A., King Fahd University of Petroleum & Minerals
During the extraction of crude oil, water production is a serious problem as most of the oil is produced in the form of stable emulsion due to the presence of natural emulsifier in the crude oil. These emulsions could be water-in-oil or oil-in-water depending on the interactions between the different components of the emulsion. Before transporting to refineries, the separation of water from the crude oil is extremely important as water can cause corrosion and other operational challenges during processing. Several mechanical and chemical methods are used to break the emulsion and separate the water from crude oil. Chemical demulsification is one of the important technique to separate the water by breaking the emulsion. Several chemicals such as ionic liquids, nanoparticles, surfactants, and polymers are used as demulsifier. A significant work has been published on the application of these materials in chemical demulsfication. In this work, we propose the use of natural material as demulsifier to break the highly stable emulsion. Several demulsifiers such as quartz obtained from sand, palm oil fuel ash, and fly ash was applied to break the high stable emulsion. The emulsions were prepared using water and different types of crude oils using a high speed mixer. The emulsions were prepared by varying the concentration of salts and water/oil ratio to mimic the real conditions. The asphaltene present in the crude oil acts as natural emulsifier that stabilize such emulsion. Demulsifiers were added to these emulsions to evaluate the performance of these demulsifiers. A bottle test was used to measure demulsfication efficiency (DE%). Demulsification tests were done at room temperature and at high temperature. Emulsion characterization was done using droplet size measurements, interfacial tension measurement, and rheological measurement. The demulsfication bottle test indicates that the reference emulsion without any demulsifier was stable for several days and no separation of water was observed. However, the addition of different natural demulsifier at different concentrations break the emulsion and separated the water from the oil. Using these low cost demulsifier resulted in breaking the emulsion with different DE depending on the temperature, type and concentration of salts, dosage of demulsifier, and type of the demulsifier. More than 97% demulsification efficiency could be achieved using these low cost materials.