Presentation Profile

Overcoming the Detrimental Effects of Inorganic Salts in Crude Oil

Main Author
Dr. Raj Shah - Koehler Instrument Company, Inc.

Additional Authors
  • Sarjeel Zaman - Koehler Instrument Company, Inc.
  • Stanley Zhang - Koehler Instrument Company, Inc.
Abstract Number: 135

Crude oils are complex mixtures that consist of a wide range of naturally occurring hydrocarbons that may differ in appearance, composition, consistency, and color. These oils are uniquely classified by hydrocarbon composition, distillation, yield, quality, sulfur content, or API gravity. However, crude oils often contain several compounds and impurities that need to be removed during the refining process. These include sulfur, nitrogen, and oxygen compounds, trace metals, and inorganic salts. In particular, inorganic salts within raw crude can cause fouling and plugging of pipelines and heat exchangers. Additional damage can result from serious hydrochloric acid and ammonium chloride corrosion from the decomposition of chloride salts. This leads to substantial economic loss due to increased capital expenditure to repair or replace equipment. Production down-time during maintenance periods and energy inefficiency can reduce yield and further decrease profits. The wide range of problems caused by excess salt content in crude oil necessitates the measurement and removal of inorganic salts to meet industry standards. The Koehler K23060 Salt in Crude Analyzer is a newly developed instrument that can determine salt concentration in a crude oil sample conforming to the ASTM D3230 method in a quick and reliable manner to prevent complications with equipment or yield during the refinery process. This poster will primarily focus on the hazardous effects of inorganic salts during the petroleum refinery and transportation processes and how the K23060 Salt in Crude Analyzer can be used to determine excess salt concentration for crude oil desalting.

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