Pipeline transport of waxy crude oils can be performed effectively, both from technical and economic standpoints, through adequate system designs. Such pipeline designs must consider safety aspects, system integrity, ease of installation, and potential operating and maintenance problems. General topics which must be reviewed will include features of the waxy crudes, fluid heating and temperature loss control potential, factors influencing and methods of controlling wax accretions, and problems involved with shutdown and startup. A general review of pump effectiveness for waxy crude transport is provided. A cost comparison of pipeline transport with other methods of waxy crude movement, such as barge tow or tanker handling, is presented.

This paper is essentially a review of waxy crude oils and their features related to offshore transport. It will serve as an information source for engineers who are inexperienced in dealing with waxy crudes and as a guideline and source of ideas for more experienced engineers that must design transport facilities.

Effectively designed pipeline systems can be established to handle waxy crude oil transport. In most cases, pipelines are a cost effective method of transport when compared to other alternates such as barge or tanker shipment.

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