Particle size is a very important parameter in the petrochemical industry.
Bettersize laser particle size analyzer
wet dispersion system can help you to detect:
Catalysts: including the research and quality control of catalysts. This is its main application in oil refineries and catalyst plants.
Flue gas: it can analyze the particle content and distribution of flue gas in the front pipe of flue gas turbines, ensuring safe operation.
Carclazyte: lubricant additive.
Emulsified liquids: the particle size determines the stability of emulsified liquids.
PVC, phenylethylene and ABS: quality control and research of raw materials and products.
Chemical fibers: quality control and research of raw materials and products.
A fine example of particle size being used to good effect is in the manufacture of oil, water and synthetic based drilling muds. Drilling muds are complex suspensions whose formulation is manipulated in order to make them fit for purpose in the oil extraction process from new wells and maintaining oil well operation in established wells.
Drilling muds were originally designed to lubricate and cool down the drill bit, which is still their primary role. These days a fit for purpose mud should prevent ingress of fluids and solids into the rock formation. It has to be borne in mind that a different particle size distribution will be required if a particular well has a different geology. In addition the mud should keep the well clear by transporting the cuttings from the production zone.
Finally the mud should stabilise the well and provide enough hydrostatic pressure to stop oil and/or gas escaping as it is being drilled.
Particles in the mud smaller than the pore size of the rock formation bridge the pores whilst they are circulating. This leads to the formation of a filter cake which stops fluids leaving the well during drilling thus stabilising the well. If the particles are too small, they may deeply penetrate the rock blocking the pores permanently damaging production. In the 1970s Abram, suggested that the median particle size should be a bit bigger than 1/3 the pore size of the rock to prevent blockage. In the ‘90s, Hands subsequently recommended that the bridging properties of the fluid must be selected so that 90% of the particles are smaller than the pore size of the rock. A perfect match of the bridging agent's size would minimize the influx of fluid and particles into the rock. Currently, the ideal packing theory (IDT) originally used on pigment distributions in paint is gaining acceptance as all-encompassing theory. (IDT) can optimise the particle size distribution and indicate the ideal packing sequence which will further reduce fluid invasion and optimise sealing of the well, as opposed to the Abram's rule which only predicts the size of particle required to initiate a bridge.
Particle sizing systems such as the Bettersize products below are ideal to assist in this work.