Safeguarding your operations through precise scale modeling, analytical testing, and strategic chemical evaluations.

Take control of your scale deposition challenges with SPL’s expert-driven solutions.

At SPL, the management of mineral scale deposition is holistically tackled by experienced subject matter experts using a combination of scale modeling, static and dynamic test methods, and chemical evaluations to select the best risk managed approach. 

Scale Overview

Oilfield mineral scale deposition is a significant challenge in the oil and gas industry and is the precipitation of inorganic minerals (most typically of divalent carbonates and sulfates) due to supersaturation of salts. Mineral scales cause many challenges to oil and gas production operations, including formation damage, production losses, and increased workovers in producers. The formation of mineral scale deposits in production tubing, casing, perforations, and even on the formation face itself severely constricting fluid flow, curtailing production of oil and gas wells. The major elements that comprise any effort aimed at the successful control of scale deposition include scale identification, prediction, inhibition, and removal.

At SPL, the risk assessment of mineral scale formation in a laboratory environment involves several steps, including the use of predictive modeling, laboratory testing, and evaluation of scale inhibition efficiency:

  • Predictive Modeling: Predictive modeling is one of the first crucial aspects of understanding and therefore preventing mineral scale deposition. This involves analyzing the entire water system and using computer modeling to predict potential issues. This predictive approach allows for the identification and delivery of the best fit-for-purpose solutions. For instance, the ScaleSoftPitzer program calculates the potential scale mass deposition from the initial supersaturated solution to the point where the final saturation ratio (SR) reaches 1, under ideal conditions and given infinite time.
  • Laboratory Testing: Laboratory testing involves the use of various techniques to study the kinetics of scale formation and its inhibition. This can include conventional bottle tests, dynamic tube blocking rigs, and flow visualization techniques. The severity of scale deposition at different locations from the reservoir to transport flowline can be evaluated under dynamic conditions, at various temperatures and pH levels, which are major factors contributing to mineral scale formation.
  • Evaluation of Scale Inhibition Efficiency: The effectiveness of scale inhibitors in preventing mineral scale formation is a critical aspect of risk assessment. Techniques for assessing scale inhibition efficiency include the use of chemical inhibitors and the evaluation of their performance. The effectiveness of these inhibitors can be evaluated using techniques such as once-through in-situ flow visualization, which allows for the simultaneous study of the inhibition of both homogeneous bulk precipitation and heterogeneous surface deposition in a single system.
  • Risk Communication: After the risk assessment, it is crucial to communicate the results clearly, stating the overall objective of the risk assessment. This allows the analyst to compare results in relative terms and rank them in order of their effect on the plant or public.

By combining these methods, it is possible to effectively assess the risk of mineral scale formation in a laboratory environment, allowing for the implementation of appropriate mitigation strategies in the field.

Take the first step towards a scale-free operation today!

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