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Iranian Journal of Chemical Engineering

Vol. 10, No. 1 (Winter), 2013, IAChE

Modelling and Experimental Study of Wax Deposition in

Transportation Line Using a Flow Loop System
A. Shahrabadi1∗, M. Sadi1, S. S. Hendi1, B. Dabir2
1- Research Institute of Petroleum Industry, Tehran, Iran
2- Amirkabir University of Technology, Tehran, Iran


The gelling of waxy crudes and the deposition of wax on the inner walls of pipelines

f S
present a costly problem in the production and transportation of oil. The object of the
present study is to investigate the factors that affect the deposition of the paraffin wax
on the pipe surface under different conditions using a flow loop system. A series of
experiments on wax deposition from a mixture of waxy oil have been performed in a
65cm by 1cm ID flow loop in both laminar and turbulent flow regime. These

e o
experiments were done to study the effect of some important factors on the amount of
deposited wax on the pipe wall. These factors consist of flow rate, residence time, wax
concentration and temperature difference between mixture and pipe wall. It was found
that the wax deposition increases with increasing temperature difference and residence

time, but the effect of flow rate depends on flow regime. The other goal is mathematical
modeling of wax deposition for a multi-component hydrocarbon mixture. The

h i
procedure for generating the model is described in detail. Finally, the results obtained
from the model were compared with experimental data. It was found that there is an
acceptable match between experimental and theoretical data and to some extent, this
confirms the validity of the model and also the ability of the developed model to predict

r c
the wax deposition on pipelines under different operational condition.

Keywords: Wax, Deposition, Mathematical Model, Pipeline, Flow Loop System

1. Introduction
Wax Deposition is a complex and very costly
problem for the petroleum industry, widely
hydrocarbons called n-alkanes, usually
ranging from C18 to C40. The presence of
paraffin can cause severe problems
reported and studied by researchers in throughout the working processes of these
decades past [1-2]. Many crude oils in the oils. It is well known that, in special
world contain significant quantities of wax conditions of pressure and temperature,
which will readily crystallize during the paraffin begins to crystallize and once the
production, transportation and storage of the crystals are formed they show a strong
oil. Waxy crude oils are characterized by a tendency to aggregate. The formed
high content of paraffin, a mixture of heavy agglomerates can result in an increase in oil

∗ Corresponding author:

Modelling and Experimental Study of Wax Deposition in Transportation Line Using a Flow Loop System

viscosity by several orders of magnitude, oil predict the onset of wax precipitation and the
gelation and deposition on pipeline walls. deposition of wax along pipeline walls.
Since the temperatures at which paraffin However, accurately modeling deposition in
crystallize are not extreme, the problem of pipelines can be a complex and difficult
paraffin crystallization affects most parts of undertaking because, while precipitation is
the waxy crude oils that are found in nature. mainly a function of thermodynamic
The temperature at which paraffin starts to variables such as composition, pressure and
crystallize is commonly known as cloud temperature, deposition is also dependent on
point or Wax Appearance Point (WAP), flow hydrodynamics, heat and mass transfer,
whereas the temperature at which crystals and solid–solid and surface–solid
begin to agglomerate is usually called pour interactions[5]. Deposition of wax from

point. Pour point is typically 10-15o C lower crude oil during transportation has been

than the cloud point. At temperature below studied by a number of investigators. Bern et
the cloud point paraffin starts to crystallize. al. reported the main mechanisms by which
Deposition of wax on the wall of
transportation pipe line is one of the serious
and longstanding problems in the petroleum S
the paraffin deposition occurs are molecular
diffusion, shear dispersion and Brownian

diffusion[6]. Burger et al. focused on the

industry and has attracted the attention of mechanisms of wax deposition in the Trans
many researchers. The factors known to Alaska pipeline system and they calculated

affect the deposition of paraffin waxes on the the thickness of deposit as a function of time
surface of the pipelines from the flowing and distance[7]. Deposition is believed to

concentration, temperature
i v
systems are: flow rates, residence time, wax
occur as a result of lateral transport by
diffusion, shear dispersion and Brownian

surface and pipe wall roughness.
between solution cloud point and the pipe diffusion. They concluded that molecular
diffusion dominates at higher temperature

Deposition of wax in the production of and heat flux conditions, whereas shear
tubing and pipelines reduces operating dispersion is the dominant mechanism at the

efficiency and production, increases the cost lower temperature and low heat flux. Also,
of prevention and remediation, horsepower they reported the contribution of Brownian
requirement and manpower needs. These can motion is small compared with other
cause millions of dollars in losses every year. mechanisms. Hamouda and Revnoy [8]
To avoid waxing, thermal techniques are concluded that molecular diffusion is the
applied by keeping the flowing-fluid main mechanism. Brown et al.[9] showed
temperature higher than the wax appearance that increasing shear rate decreases the rate
temperature. of deposition. Svendsen[10] developed a
Some researchers have studied correlations mathematical model for prediction of wax
between the properties of crude oils and their deposition in both open and closed pipeline
flowing properties, including the systems. They combined phase equilibrium,
precipitation and deposition of wax during phase transition and fluid dynamics to model
flow [3-4]. Models have been developed to wax deposition in pipelines. They concluded

4 Iranian Journal of Chemical Engineering,

10, No. 1
Shahrabadi, Sadi, Hendi, Dabir

in large coefficient of thermal expansion critical rate leads to decreasing the amount of
some components may separate and move in deposit.
the opposite direction at temperature below
wax appearance temperature. Hsu and 2. Theory and model formulation
Brubaker[11] developed a wax deposition When transporting waxy oil through a cold
scale up model. They considered the effect of pipeline, wax will be deposited on the cold
molecular diffusion and shear dispersion to pipe wall through molecular diffusion, shear
scale up the experimental results for waxy dispersion, Brownian and settling
crude production lines. They concluded that mechanisms. Our data shows that shear
the flow turbulence effect has significant dispersion effect on wax deposition is not
impact on wax deposition and cannot be significant under laminar flow conditions.

neglected in wax deposition modeling. However, when flow velocity exceeds a

Hamouda and Davidson[12] investigated the certain value, shear effect becomes
effect of flow rate on wax deposition. Their significant and affects wax deposition rate,
study revealed a significant change in the
wax deposition rate when the flow shifts
from laminar to turbulent flow. Creek et al. S
especially under turbulent flow conditions.
Molecular diffusion on wax deposition is

discussed and a model is created. This

[13] concluded that the deposition rate mechanism is the driving force for the
decreases with increasing flow rate rather transportation of dissolved and precipitated

than increasing as suggested by a number of paraffin to the pipeline wall. The driving
authors. Fogler et al. investigated the effect force for the molecular diffusion at any time

of pipe wall temperature on wax deposition is the concentration gradient (∂ρ x ∂r ) along
[14]. They reported that an increase in the the direction r, where ρ x is the mass density

c h
wall temperature results in a decrease in the
deposit thickness. An increase of flow rate
of the liquid phase at a certain location from
the pipeline wall at a lateral distance r.

also has a similar effect. Kok and Saracouglu
According to Fick’s law the flux of the
developed a mathematical model for
dissolved wax molecules is :

estimation of wax deposition in
pipelines[15]. They concluded as the ∂ρ x
J = −D m (1)
temperature of the fluid declines along the ∂r
pipelines, the wax mass fraction, solid-liquid
equilibrium constant and wax thickness where
increases. Soleymaninazar et al. [16] D m is the mass diffusion coefficient. ρ x can
developed a mathematical model both in be calculated from this equation:
laminar and turbulent flow regime. For ρ x = ρ m − ρs (2)
turbulent flow regime they used k − ε to
predict the velocity and temperature Where ρ m and ρs are the mass density of the
distribution. They reported in the turbulent
mixture and solid phase respectively. It
flow regime that there is critical flow rate for
should be remembered that ρ m , ρs are
any system. Increasing flow rate beyond the

Iranian Journal of Chemical Engineering, Vol.10, No. 1

Modelling and Experimental Study of Wax Deposition in Transportation Line Using a Flow Loop System

considered as linear functions of the L x is the number of moles of liquid phase

temperature. Equation (1) can be rewritten Ls
and θ is the ratio of
as: Lx
Erickson et al [17] and Won [18] presented
∂ρ ∂T
j = −D m x (3) the following model to calculate K-value:
∂T ∂r

Combining Equations(1) to (3): si γ ⎡ Δ h if ⎛ T ⎞⎤

Ki = = x i exp ⎢ ⎜1 − f ⎟⎥ ,
xi γ si ⎣ RT ⎝ T i ⎠⎦
⎡ ∂w s T ∂ρm ⎤ 1 ∂T (4) i = 1, 2,..., n c
J = −Dm ρm ⎢−T + (1 −w s )
⎣ ∂T ρm ∂T ⎥⎦ T ∂r (8)

w s is the weight fraction of total wax

crystals in the mixture. If w i and z i are
In derivation of the above equation, it is

assumed that the temperature and pressure
are in such a way that the amount of vapor
considered as the weight fraction and mole
fraction of each component in the feed, we
have :

f S
moles can be ignored normally. The weight
fraction of component i of solid phase which
is in the mixture w si can be written by the
wi = n

z i Mw i

i =1
i Mw i

e o
following relation:

wsi =
Ls Si M i
wi Ls Si M i
= wi wti

v n
∑z M
zi M i

component i which is in the solid phase is

h i
On the other hand, if the weight fraction of

considered as w ti , the following relation can

i =1
i i

Combining Equations (7) and (9) we have:
be written:

w ti = s i i

A r
L s is the number of moles of solid phase.
w s = ∑w si = ∑w i
i =1

Now we need
∂w s

i =1
1+θ K i

to be substituted in

S i is the mole fraction of each component in

Equation (4) to calculate the flux of wax
solid phase. According to the definition of
∂w ti
solid liquid equilibrium K-value ⎛⎜ K i = s i ⎞⎟
crystals. So, at first is calculateed
⎝ xi ⎠
using Equations (7) and (8):
equation (6) is rewritten as follows:

⎡ 2 ∂ Lx ΔH i f ⎤
Ls − ⎢(1 + θ ) +θ ⎥ Ki
∂wti ∂T
= ⎣ ⎦
Lx θ (7) (11)
w ti = = ∂T (1 + θ K i )

1+ s K i 1+θ K i

6 Iranian Journal of Chemical Engineering,

10, No. 1
Shahrabadi, Sadi, Hendi, Dabir

And from Equation (9) we have : As it is clear, the temperature gradient is

needed to calculate the mass flux.
∂wsi ∂w Temperature distribution of the flowing oil
= wi si (12)
∂T ∂T sample is dependent upon the velocity
profile. It was assumed that the behavior of
At this point we define a dimensionless waxy fluid can be described by power law
parameter σ i as follows: model.

⎛ ∂V ⎞
⎡ 2 ∂L Δh f ⎤
wi ⎢T (1 + θ ) +θ i ⎥ Ki τ rz = K ⎜ z ⎟ (17)
σ i = −T si = ⎣
∂T RT ⎦ (13) ⎝ ∂r ⎠
∂T (1 + θK i )2

Now we substitute σ i in Equation (4) and

the result will be:
So, the velocity profile inside the pipe can be

expressed by the following equation:

⎡ nc
J = ∑Ji =− Dmρm ⎢∑σi + ( wi − wsi )
⎣ i=1
T ∂ρm ⎤ 1 ∂T
ρm ∂T ⎥⎦ T ∂r
S ⎡

⎢ ⎝R⎠ ⎥

r ⎞
Vz ( r ) = Vmax ⎢1 − ⎜ ⎟ ⎥

1+ n


i =1



wax crystal deposition. It should be

mentioned that the Wilke-Chang equation
i v
In the above Equation, if J ≤ 0 there is no ⎛ 3n + 1 ⎞
Vmax = V ⎜
⎝ n +1 ⎠
⎟ (19)

7.4 × 10−8 T (φMw)

c h
was used to calculate diffusion coefficient. V is the average velocity. Neglecting the
axial conduction, frictional heating and heat
Dm =
μV 0.6

A r
Where φ is association factor and V is molar
volume of wax.
(15) source in energy balance equation the
simplified energy equation for fully
developed flow of fluid can be written as :

∂T ⎡ ∂ 2T 1 ∂T ⎤
The following equation was used for Vz ( r ) =α ⎢ 2 + ⎥ (20)
calculating the solution viscosity. ∂z ⎣ ∂r r ∂r ⎦

μ = A exp ⎜ ⎟ (16) Substituting the velocity profile in Equation
⎝T ⎠ (20) and solving that equation with
appropriate initial and boundary conditions,
A and B are constant coefficients and these temperature distribution inside the pipe can
were found for testing sample by doing some be obtained. The following initial and
particular experiments. boundary conditions were used:

Iranian Journal of Chemical Engineering, Vol.10, No. 1

Modelling and Experimental Study of Wax Deposition in Transportation Line Using a Flow Loop System

T ( R, z ) = T0 = cte 4
⎛ ∂T ⎞ 3 % wax

⎟ =0
3 4% wax
⎜ (21)

Viscosity (cP)
⎝ ∂r ⎠r =0
5% wax
10% wax

T ( r , 0 ) = Tin = cte
T 0 is the temperature of inlet fluid. The 0
0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70
above equation was solved numerically using Temperature (o C)

implicit finite difference method. A computer Figure 1. Temperature dependency of viscosity in

program based on the above formulation has different wax concentration.
been developed for deposition of wax in
After this work a flow loop was developed

transportation pipeline.
for wax depos ition research. Figure 2 shows

3. Experimental studies
In order to predict and calculate the amount I
the schematic flow diagram of this loop. This

flow loop includes a chilling circulator, steel
pipe, flow meter, circulation pump, oil
of wax precipitate in waxy crude oils, it is
necessary to solve the momentum, heat and
mass balance equations, simultaneously. The
viscosity of fluid is an important and key
o f
reservoir and a data acquisition system. Test
tube was 65 cm long with an inner diameter
of 1cm through which the waxy fluid flows.
The designed pipe was made from stainless
parameter that connects the momentum and

heat balance equations to each other. In order
e steel and it was divided into six sections with
the same length. So we were able to measure
to increase the accuracy of the proposed
model, a series of experiments using
capillary tube viscometer were performed
h i the wax deposited in each section. In other
words, we could have the amount of wax
deposit in different lengths. The procedure of

r c
and the viscosities of different waxy fluids in
different temperature were measured. So it
was possible to find a relation between
the experiments is as follows. First, the waxy
fluid is prepared by solving a specified
amount of paraffin wax into toluene solvent

viscosity and temperature. The results of
those tests is shown in Fig. 1. This figure
shows the effect of temperature on fluid
viscosity at different wax concentration. It
and then transferring it into the tank. Waxy
fluid is pumped inside the steel pipe at
constant flow rate. There is a coolant fluid (a
mixture of water and ethylenglycol) around
can be concluded that viscosity has an the pipe for cooling the pipe wall down to a
exponential relationship with temperature temperature below the WAP. The
and there is also a jumping point that is temperature of the heater and chiller and inlet
known as wax appearance point. These data flow rate of waxy fluid should be controlled.
were used to find the parameters A and B in Waxy fluid is cooled down when it passes
equation (15) and this equation was used in through the cold pipe and when the bulk
our model. temperature of waxy fluid reaches below
WAP, wax crystals start to form, and due to

8 Iranian Journal of Chemical Engineering,

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Shahrabadi, Sadi, Hendi, Dabir

different mechanisms move toward the pipe results of this key parameter has been
wall. The waxy fluid is recirculated through depicted in Fig. 3. As is clear with its trend,
the pipe following the same procedure. After increasing this temperature difference causes
a specified time the flow of waxy fluid is an increase in the amount of wax
stopped and the steel pipe is evacuated from precipitation, but it should be remembered
oil cut as the cold flow still exists. After that wax starts to precipitate in such a
complete evacuation pipe sections are condition that the temperature of the pipe
detached from each other and all the sections wall is lower than the solution temperature
are washed with hot toluene to gather the and WAP. Increasing the temperature
deposited wax on the pipe wall. The difference increases the heat transfer rate and
collected solution of each section is heated this factor increases the wax precipitation.

until the toluene is vaporized and solid wax One important point is that in the beginning,

remains. Thus the amount of wax deposited the rate of wax precipitation increases but by
in each section of the pipe, and as a result the passage of time the rate of wax
total deposit in the pipe can be measured
using a very accurate scale.
precipitation decreases because of increasing
the amount of wax precipitate. In other

words, after some time the thickness of the

wax layer increases, and this layer plays the
2 role of insulator and this factor therefore

decreases the rate of heat transfer.
1- oil reservoir

2- steel pipe
3 4 3- chilling circulator 1

4- flow meter
5- circulation pump
Total wax deposited (gr)

c h
4. Results and discussion
Figure 2. The schematic diagram of flow loop used in
this work.

Temperature difference (°C)

In order to examine the effects of different Figure 3. The effect of temperature difference on total
parameters on wax precipitation, sensitivity wax deposition in different wax concentration.
analysis of different parameters was done by
changing just one parameters and keeping the 4-2. Flow rate
other parameters constant. The other parameter studied is the flow rate
of waxy fluid. The effect of this parameter in
4-1. Temperature difference laminar flow regime is shown in Fig. 4. More
The temperature difference between inlet solid particles exist in high flow rates and for
fluid and pipe wall plays a key role on wax this reason the heat transfer rate increases
precipitation phenomena. The experimental and so wax precipitation increases. But in

Iranian Journal of Chemical Engineering, Vol.10, No. 1

Modelling and Experimental Study of Wax Deposition in Transportation Line Using a Flow Loop System

turbulent flow increasing the flow rate

decreases wax precipitation rate and it can be

Total wax deposited (gr)

resulted that there is another controlling
mechanism in turbulent flow regime that
controls the wax precipitation rate. Despite
the fact that many studies intuitively attribute
the reason to “shear removal”, Yingda Lu
[19] and his group indentified three effects
that give rise to an alternative explanation Flow rate (Lit/min)
that has been overlooked in previous studies.
Figure 5. The effect of flow rate on wax deposition in
They found that these three effects include turbulent flow regime.

the effect of the boundary layer thickness on

mass transfer (effect 1), the diffusivity at the 3. Residence time
interface on The effect of residence time on wax

deposition for different wax content has been
shown in Fig. 6. As expected, increasing time

causes an increase in the amount of
Total wax deposited (gr)

e o precipitation. The residence time permits

more heat loss and leads to a lower oil
temperature, which in turn leads to wax

precipitation and deposition.

h i
Total wax deposited (gr)

Flow rate (Lit/min)

Figure 4. The effect of flow rate on total wax

deposited in laminar flow regime.

r c
mass transfer (effect 2), and the interface
wax concentration on mass transfer (effect
3). Both effects 1 and 2 tend to increase the
growth rate of the wax deposit, while effect 3
A Residence time (min)

Figure 6. The effect of residence time on wax

tends to have the opposite effect. The overall deposition.
growth behavior of the wax deposit is the
result of the competition between these three 4-4. Wax concentration in fluid
effects.The shear dispersion causes the wax The effect of wax content in the feed on the
deposit to detach from the pipe wall inside total deposition of wax is shown in Fig. 7,
the bulk flow. Some experiments in turbulent where the y-axis corresponds to the
flow regime were conducted and the results percentage of wax deposited. Increasing the
are depicted in Fig. 5. concentration of wax in feed increases wax

10 Iranian Journal of Chemical Engineering,

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Shahrabadi, Sadi, Hendi, Dabir

deposition. From the figure it can clearly be

observed that the higher the paraffin content

Total wax deposited (gr)

(the supersaturation level), the more wax
deposit produced at any given time; the faster
the deposition rates; and the quicker it
reaches the 100% wax deposition. These
results are well expected: with the increase of
the paraffin wax content in solution, there are
Distance from inlet (cm)
more wax molecules available to produce
wax crystals. Figure 8. The amount of wax deposited along the

At the end of this section, it should be noted

Total wax deposited (gr)

that experiments for three cases were

duplicated. The results of the duplicated
experiments and the

calculated errors showed that the average
value of these errors is 2.24% . Table 1 and

Wax content in feed (%)

Figure 7. The effect of wax concentration in feed on

e o Fig. 9 shows these results.

wax deposition.

Total wax deposited (gr)

Fig. 8 presents the amount of wax deposition

with respect to the length of pipe. Regarding

h i
this figure, increasing the length, the amount
of wax increases as the distance from the
inlet of the pipe leads to greater cooling on
r c
the fluid sample and then there is greater
potential to form wax precipitate.
Table 1. The results of three duplicated tests.
Figure 9. The results of three duplicated tests.
Test number

Test Temperature Wax Residence Flow Rate Wax Deposited (gr) Wax Deposited (gr) Error
No. Difference Content(%) Time(min) (Lit/min) first try second try (%)

test1 25 4 60 0.4 0.523 0.508 2.87

test2 25 4 60 0.6 0.457 0.446 2.41

test3 30 3 60 0.4 0.554 0.546 1.44

average error 2.24

Iranian Journal of Chemical Engineering, Vol.10, No. 1

Modelling and Experimental Study of Wax Deposition in Transportation Line Using a Flow Loop System

4-5. Comparing model results with

experimental data

Total wax deposited (gr)

In this section the results of the model are
compared with the measured experimental
data. The results of this part have been
depicted in Tables 2-4 quantitatively and in
Figs. 10-12. Experimental results are very
well predicted by the simulated wax
Temperature difference (°C)
deposition model that shows the molecular
Figure 10. Comparison of the model and
diffusion is a dominant mechanism in the experimental data. Effect of temperature difference.
laminar flow.

Table 2. Comparison of the model and experimental

data. Effect of temperature difference.
Temp Absolute
Total wax deposited (gr)

Experimental Model
difference error(%)
20 0.362 0.324 10.50









o f
Flow rate (Lit/min)

Figure 11. Comparison of model and experimental

Table 3. Comparison of model and experi-mental
data. Effect of flow rate.
Flow Rate

i v
data. Effect of flow rate.

Experimental Model
(Lit/min) Error(%)
Total wax deposited (gr)

0.4 0.306 0.285 6.86

0.6 0.326 0.311 4.60

0.7 0.352 0.325 7.67



A 0.333


Table 4. Comparison of model and experimental data.

Effect of residence time.


Residence time (min)

Figure 12. Comparison of model and experimental

data. Effect of residence time.
Flow Rate Absolute
Experimental Model
(Lit/min) error(%)
20 0.159 0.159 0.00 As it can be observed in those Figures, the
40 0.313 0.27 13.74 proposed model predicts the amount of wax
60 0.464 0.412 11.21 deposition 6 to 13 percent less than real
100 0.811 0.734 9.49 amount of wax. In order to analyze the
120 0.918 0.871 5.12 accuracy of the experiments the following
test was done. Four different samples were

12 Iranian Journal of Chemical Engineering,

10, No. 1
Shahrabadi, Sadi, Hendi, Dabir

made by solving different percentage of wax experiments were done using a mixture of
in toluene which were then heated on a waxy oil. Then, using the available
heater in order to vaporize the toluene and thermodynamic model and transport
after weighting of the containers the amount equations, an attempt was made to develop a
of wax in any sample was measured. After computer program in order to predict the
that, the amount of initial added waxes were amount of wax precipitate. Finally, the
compared with the extracted waxes. The results of the model and the experimental
results have been shown in Fig. 13. In Fig. data were compared and good agreement
3-4 percent difference is observed. between them was observed. The main
conclusions of this work can be expressed as

1.2567 1.2152
‐ In laminar flow regime, increasing the
measured (gr)


1 0.7974 inlet flow rate intensifies the heat transfer

0.8 0.7733
0.5905 rate and this causes more solid particles to

0.6 0.5644
0.3998 form. In other words, increasing the flow

0.4 0.3861
rate increases wax precipitation rate.


0 ‐ Increasing the temperature difference

0 0.2 0.4 0.6 0.8 1 1.2 1.4
Wax in Feed(gr)
Wax in feed (gr) between inlet fluid and pipe increases the
Figure 13. Comparison of the amount of wax in feed
amount of wax precipitate and this is
and wax measured.

because of increasing heat transfer.
‐ Increasing the residence time increases
So it can be said that 3-4 percent of
disagreement between the results of model
and experimental data is related to the
i v the amount of wax precipitate.
‐ Inlet fluid samples have greater potential

measurement error. Therefore our model has

good capability for prediction of wax

c h for wax precipitation, therefore the

amount of wax precipitation increases as

the concentration of inlet fluid sample
deposition in pipelines.

5. Conclusions
A detailed literature review on wax
deposition problems was done in this paper.
The main aim of this study was to investigate
A Nomenclature
A, B
Constants in Equation (16)
Mass diffusion coefficient
Heat of fusion
some problems related to the precipitation of
the heavy organic material in oil pipelines. J Mass flux of wax
Noting that the main precipitates are waxes Ki Equilibrium constant
and asphaltenes, it was decided to focus on Number of moles in liquid phase
one of these namely, wax. Paraffin
Ls Number of moles in solid phase
deposition flow loop system was designed to
investigate the factors affecting wax Mw i Molecular weight of component i
deposition. Based on this target some r Radial distance

Iranian Journal of Chemical Engineering, Vol.10, No. 1

Modelling and Experimental Study of Wax Deposition in Transportation Line Using a Flow Loop System

R Gas constant References

si Mole fraction of component i in [1] Bilderback, C. A. and McDougall, L.
the solid phase A., "Complete paraffin control in
petroleum production", SPE J. Petrol.
Tif Freezing temperature of
component i Technol., 21, 1151–1156, (1963).
[2] Haq, M. A., Deposition of paraffin wax
To Initial temperature
from its solution with hydrocarbons
T in Inlet temperature (USMS 10541), Society of Petroleum
V Molar volume Engineers, (1978).
[3] Carmen García, M., Orea, M.,
Vz Velocity distribution
Carbognani, L. and Urbina, A., "The
V max Maximum velocity effect of paraffinic fractions on crude
Average velocity
Weight fraction of total wax in the
[4] Carmen García,
oil wax crystallization", Petrol. Sci.
Technol., 19, 189–196, (2001).
M., "Paraffin

w ti
Weight fraction of component i in
the solid phase

f S
deposition in oil production", SPE
International Symposium on Oilfield
Chemistry, Houston, Society of
Weight fraction of component i
Mole fraction of component i in
liquid phase

e o Petroleum Engineers, (2001).

[5] Hammami, A., Ratulowski, J. and
Coutinho, J. A. P., "Cloud points: can

we measure or model them?", Petrol.
zi Mole fraction of component i in

Sci. Technol., 21, 345–358, (2003).
[6] Bern, P. A., Winthers, V. R., and

Greek Letters
γ xi

c h
Activity coefficient of component i
Cairns, J. R., "Wax deposition in crude
oil pipelines", Presented at European
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γ si

in liquid phase

in solid phase

(1 − L x ) / L x
Activity coefficient of component i
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[7] Burger, E. D., Perkins, T. K. and
Striegler, J. H., "Studies of wax
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ρx Mass density of liquid phase JPT, 1075, (1981).
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performance", Offshore Tech.
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