Asphaltene aggregation is one of the biggest problems in the oil and gas industry for both upstream and downstream processes. It called the cholesterol of crude oil since it can deposit on the reservoirs pores and block it. It can also plug the production tubes and pipelines which could cost millions of dollars. One of the solutions is adding different chemicals such as asphaltene dispersants (ADs) or asphaltene inhibitors (AIs). ADs reduce asphaltene particle size which will keep them in the crude while AIs prevent the asphaltene aggregation by shifting the onset pressure of asphaltene.
In this paper, three different asphaltene inhibitors were tested and investigated thoroughly with different concentrations for heavy Arabian crude oil. Several tests were performed: asphaltene inhibitors efficiency was tested using laser scanner analysis and asphaltene stability was investigated by using spot test method and asphaltene solubility class index.
The results showed that the Arabian crude oil has a high asphaltene content and it reasonably stable. Two of the inhibitors (SF-1742 and AI-410) have showed better efficiency than the third inhibitor (AI- 108) in the inhibitors efficiency test with low optimum concentration.