Normally, hydrocarbon pipeline flow is a complex multi-phase system comprised of bubbles, droplets, and particles including asphaltenes, waxes, gas hydrates, emulsions, and inorganic particles. To control separations, flow, and process efficiency analytical measurements are often applied by petroleum engineers and chemists. Yet extreme temperature and pressure conditions make offline sampling and analysis difficult and time consuming. Offline measurements can also alter or destroy multiphase components and cannot be applied to make real-time process optimization and control decisions. Continue reading
Recently, I was reviewing an interesting presentation Asphaltenes, Waxes, Emulsions, and Oil Supensions: Inline Particle and Droplet Measurement. This discusses how particles and droplets cause problems in pipeline flow, with special focus on flow assurance optimization using:
- Methane gas hydrates
- Oil-water emulsions
- Asphaltene precipitates/wax crystallization
- Sand-water separations
If you are interested in additional ideas on how to measure particle and droplet distributions in dark crude oil or dense drilling fluids, you may want to view this presentation on flow assurance.