An improved flow assurance solution based on a new additive with robust performance, low treat rate and versatile handling properties was developed successfully. It was applied in a waxy crude oil from West Africa with high pour point and a wax content of about 24%. Crucial for the project success was a close collaboration among all involved stakeholders from operator, service company and chemical supplier.
In the initial lab screening by the chemical supplier, tests focused on pour point, viscosity and yield stress. This approach allowed to identify the most efficient type of additive chemistry for the specific crude oil and to meet target performance requirements.
Crude oil viscosity and yield stress under pipeline operation conditions could be reduced by more than 95% while reducing the required amount of additive by more than 75% compared to the incumbent solution. This resulted in significant cost savings for the operator and in a reduction of the Health, Safety and Environmental (HSE) exposure.