The synergistic effects of NiO nanoparticles and a chemical inhibitor on the stabilization of asphaltene aggregates
Volume Title: 1
Chemical/Petroleum Engineering, College of Engineering, Univ of Tehran, Tehran, Iran
The precipitation and deposition of asphaltene is one of the big challenges during the production of high-API reservoir oils, leading to undesirable financial and technical burdens on the oil industries. Therefore, the inhibition of the asphaltene precipitation/deposition is of prime importance with respect to flow assurance. In this work, NiO nanoparticles were synthesized and dispersed by ultrasonic irradiation into a liquid oil-based commercial asphaltene inhibitor to prepare a nanostructured inhibitor chemical. A dead oil sample from an Iranian oil field, with the asphaltene depostion problem, was blended with aromatics to prepare a model oil. The synergism of the nanoparticles and the chemical inhibitor on the stability of the asphaltene aggregates at harsh de-stabilization conditions was evaluated by two standard tests, i.e. asphaltene dispersant test (ADT) and analytical centrifugal stability analysis of asphaltene (ACSAA). The results indicate that the addition of a tiny dose of the nanoparticles to the chemical inhibitor improves the inhibitor efficiency considerably. It is inferred that the interactions of the nanoparticles with the asphaltene and inhibitor chemical are the underlying stabilization mechanism of the asphaltene.