(352e) Hydrate Formation in Waxy Oil Systems in the Presence of Surfactants and Solid Stabilizers

Venkataramani, D., Oklahoma State University
Morrissy, S. A., University of Western Australia
Clark, P., Oklahoma State University
Aichele, C. P., Oklahoma State University
Aman, Z. M., University of Western Australia
Flow assurance is a critical aspect of deep-water production and subsea pipeline operations due to the associated operating and maintenance costs involved in managing and mitigating pipeline blockages due to hydrates and wax. Although considerable research has been conducted on each of these systems independently, there is a lack of fundamental understanding on the interfacial properties of hydrates in waxy oil systems. This lack of information motivated the current experimental investigations regarding hydrate formation in waxy oil systems using visualization and micromechanical force (MMF) techniques. For this work, an Olympus BX53 polarized optical microscope equipped with a shear cell and temperature control (-50°C to 450°C) stage is used for investigating hydrate formation in either a surfactant or solid particle laden waxy oil system. The wax concentration is varied, and its effect on hydrate formation and morphology is evaluated using single water drop hydrate experiments. In addition, a micromechanical cohesion force (MMF) method is used for evaluating the hydrate interfacial behavior in these systems. In addition to measuring the cohesion force, this technique also provides insight into the effect of wax and surfactant/solid particles on the hydrate film growth rate. Both experimental techniques will provide new insights to better understand hydrate formation mechanisms and interfacial properties in the presence of wax and stabilizers.