Oily sludge, obtained during drilling processes, is considered a hazardous waste due to its composition. Conventional techniques of treating oily sludge indicates that desorption of the oily sludge is inhibited by asphaltenes. Herein, the effect of microwave power on oil recovery from contaminated drill cutting was investigated. Also, the effect of drilled cutting sizes on oil recovery was evaluated. Besides, the impact of microwave exposure time (10-60 minutes) on oil recovery was determined. Based on this, the mechanisms of microwave disintegration of the oily sludge were analyzed. Experimental result depicts that higher microwave power was more effective in the desorption of oil from the drilled cuttings. Moreover, more oil was recovered from smaller sizes of the drilled cuttings at a longer exposure time. The mechanisms of dipolar interaction and ionic conduction broke the hydrogen bond between the asphaltene and solid particles by this means enabling oil recovery of 59-99% from the contaminated drilled cuttings.

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