Department of Chemical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, University of Isfahan, Isfahan, I.R. IRAN
In this study, the dynamic evolution of water droplets size in crude oil due to aggregation and sedimentation phenomena are modeled by the Monte Carlo technique. The predicted results are compared to the NMR experimental data. The effect of type and concentration of emulsifier, water volume ratio, mixing rate and water salinity on the droplet size distribution are evaluated. The adequate agreement between the model results and experimental data reveals the model capability in the description of the aggregation and sedimentation processes in water/crude oil separation. The average size of water droplets is increased with a small rate at the initial period of the separation process. The probability of droplets collisions due to the random motion and sedimentation mechanisms are increased by increasing the size of the droplets. An increase in the aggregation among the droplets increases the average diameter of droplets evolution rate while the aggregation is decreased within a long time and the average size of droplets is approached to a steady value.