(220h) Application Of Natural Products As Dispersants/Flocculation Of Asphaltenes

Aguiar, J. I. D. S. D., Institute of Macromolecules
Moreno, M. M., EQ/UFRJ
Mansur, C. E., IMA/UFRJ

Asphaltenes are the oil components that can form aggregates and deposit, causing financial damage to the oil industry during processing. To solve this problem, stabilizers can be used to inhibit the deposition of asphaltenes. On the other hand, the oil industry may get benefits of using flocculants of asphaltenes in oil processed to increase the value of oil or to increase compatibility between different oils. In addition, nowadays there is an increasing concern about the sustainability of industrial processes.

The objective of this study is to evaluate the efficiency of more than ten natural products extracted from fruit (e. g. clove oil and sweet orange oil) as flocculants/dispersants of asphaltenes and determine a natural product to replace a commercial additive that isn’t renewable and is often more harmful to people and the environment that the natural products. For this purpose, asphaltenes proceeding from a distillation residue was extracted and characterized by elemental analysis (to determine their elemental composition), by microcalorimetry (to determine their range of solubility parameter) and by NMR (to measure its content of aromatic carbons). Precipitation tests were conducted using natural products, analyses were made with a spectrophotometer in the visible ultraviolet region at a wavelength of 850 nm with the optical path of 2 mm and 5 mm. Natural products have shown promising performance for the use as dispersants / flocculants of asphaltenes.