December 2017

Environment and Safety

Determine trace amounts of organic acids causing refinery corrosion

Petroleum is a complex hydrocarbon mixture that contains small amounts of organic acids, such as naphthenic acids and phenols.

Tang, Z., Yuan, B., Zheng, S., Chung, K. H., North Huajin Chemicals Industries Group Corp.; Shi, Q., China University of Petroleum

Petroleum is a complex hydrocarbon mixture that contains small amounts of organic acids, such as naphthenic acids and phenols. These petroleum acids are known to cause various operational problems, such as corrosion and fouling of process units, and water/oil emulsification.1 Naphthenic acid corrosion is commonly referred to as refinery corrosion, which describes corrosion problems in heaters, distillation units and pipes. The petroleum industry uses total acid number (TAN) as a measurement of crude oil corrosiveness. According to ASTM D664, the TAN is defined as the milligrams of potassium hydroxide (KOH) required to neutralize all acid compounds in one gram of an oil sample. The higher th

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