PHASETREAT 7623 Resolves Stabilized Emulsion and Reduces Oil-in-Water Discharge by 36%
- Stabilized emulsion layer removed from separator, eliminating the need to regularly skim the vessel
- Improved environmental profile via 36% decrease in oil discharge
- Hydrocyclone uptime doubled through reduction in soft-scale build-up
An offshore oil production facility in the Norwegian North Sea experienced crude oil separation challenges and poor water quality as a result of operational changes. The changes reduced the residence time in the separator and, consequently, a stabilized emulsion layer built up, which could only be removed through regular skimming operations.
|Oil Production Concentration||22,000 bpd|
|Water Production||140,000 bpd|
The process system is a 4-stage separation train with coalescer and demulsifier is injected upstream of the HP and LP separators at 5 ppm. Produced water removal is from the HP and LP separators.
Clariant Oil Services was asked to recommend an environmentally-acceptable replacement demulsifier to resolve the stabilized emulsion.
Innovation and Value Delivered
Fluid separation specialists from Clariant Oil Services were mobilized to the facility to perform extensive laboratory evaluations. The tests were devised to determine the root cause of the emulsion, followed by the formulation of new products to be tested in comparison to the incumbent.
Samples from the interface of wellhead samples indicated that the emulsion was stabilized by oil-wet iron sulfide solids. The formulation work focused on altering the wettability of the solids to remove them from the interface. PHASETREAT® 7623 showed superior performance over the incumbent and was recommended for field trial.
Upon application, crude dehydration remained within specification at 0.1%, skimming was not required and discharge oil-in-water reduced from 14 mg/l to 9 mg/l. PHASETREAT 7623 also improved the uptime of the hydrocyclones by reducing soft-scale build-up and consequential cleaning.
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