Improving crude oil rheology by hydro-pulse cavitation treatment

UDK: 622.276.8
DOI: 10.24887/0028-2448-2022-3-94-98
Key words: viscosity, crude oil, rheological properties, hydrodynamic cavitator, rotor-stator device, cavitation treatment, flow curve, specific energy, efficiency
Authors: S.E. Kutukov (The Pipeline Transport Institute LLC, RF, Moscow), M.A. Promtov (Tambov State Technical University, Tambov), A.N. Koliukh (Tambov State Technical University, Tambov), A.Yu. Stepanov (Tambov State Technical University, Tambov), F.S. Zverev (The Pipeline Transport Institute LLC, RF, Moscow), M.V. Suhovey (The Pipeline Transport Institute LLC, RF, Moscow)

The possibility of changing the rheological properties of high-paraffin low-resin oil due to hydro-pulse cavitation treatment (HCT) has been investigated. A mechanism has been proposed to explain the change in the structure of complex structural units (CSU) of oil at HCT. The simulation of the oil flow in the ANSYS CFX software package has been performed to determine the hydrodynamic parameters and cavitation numbers in a hydrodynamic cavitator (HC) with Venturi tubes and in a radial-type rotor-stator device (RSD) implementing HCT in liquids. The calculation of the hydrodynamic cavitation number based on the simulation results indicates developed cavitation in the oil flow in both HC and RSD. Specific energy consumption for oil processing in HC is 1.5 times lower than in RSD. It is assumed that HCT effects lead to the destruction of supramolecular bonds between CSU, and also destroy CSU. When paraffin crystals are destroyed, their specific surface area and, consequently, the surface energy increase. Paraffins form the core of the CSU, and the HCT of oil causes the destruction of paraffin crystals, resins are distributed between solid particles, loosen the crystal structure, adsorb on grain surfaces and change the structure of paraffin crystal associates. The adsorption of resins on destroyed paraffin crystals prevents their aggregation. Processing of high-paraffin low-resin oil in HC and RSD has shown their high efficiency in improving its rheological characteristics. After a single oil treatment in RSD, the amount of thixotropy energy and the viscosity of the oil decreased by an average of 1.5 times. After a single treatment of oil in the HC, the value of the thixotropy energy and the viscosity of the oil decreased by an average of 2 times. When processing in RSD and HC, the specific energy costs for oil processing are significantly less compared to the change in thixotropy energy.


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