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Industrial Attachment Report

Application of Paraffin & Scale Control Unit as an Alternate Solution for Paraffinic &
Scaling Production Wells
Hastovensyah, SPE, Sekolah Tinggi Teknologi Minyak & Gas
SPE member no.: 3249247

® 2007, STT MIGAS.

segments (-CH2-, -CH3) connected by single bonding.
This paper is written as a part of completion of industrial attachment lecture at Sekolah Tinggi Methane (CH4) is the simplest paraffin and the most common
Teknologi MIGAS Balikpapan.
compound in petroleum-reservoir fluid. The majority of
This paper will be presented in front of industrial attachment supervisor and colleague students
of STT MIGAS. Content of this paper is far of perfect and writer widely opens the door for
components present in solid-wax deposits are high-molecular-
further discussion and corrections. In order to socialize SPE (Society of Petroleum Engineer), weight paraffins. The latter paraffin can cause problem in oil
writer intentionally included SPE logo dan member number without aims to publishing this
paper on behalf SPE by which this paper never been evaluated by neither SPE regional nor well if present. Paraffin (wax) composed primarily of
crystallized normal alkanes to form macrocrystalline structure.
Gilby, Muser dan Kilpatrick describe properties of
Abstract macrocrystalline structure as shown in Table 1 below. 1
The purpose of this paper is not to specify on how and why
magnetism is able to prevent the deposition of paraffin and Tabel 1.—Composition & Properties of Macrocrystalline structure
scale, nor intended to replace the common applied technology Normal paraffin,% 80 – 95
in solving paraffin and scale problem. The aim of this paper is Branched Paraffin,% 2 – 15
Cyclo paraffin,% 2–8
to describe factual data by which will end up with a Melting Point range,ºC 50 – 65
conclusion regarding recent development of magnetic in liason Average molecular weight range 350 – 430
with paraffin and scale prevention and removal. Typical carbon number range 18 – 36
The present of paraffin and scale problem in oil well still Crystallinity range,% 80 – 90
remains a huge home work for oil companies. One of available
method to overcome paraffin and scale is to induce Beside aliphatic hydrocarbon, paraffin deposition contains
electromagnetic field to fluid flow causing fluid molecules aromatic, naphtenic, resin and asphaltenic. 2
become laminar which can prevent paraffin and scale The point at which the equilibrium is disturbed is classified
deposition. Electromagnetic inductor unit to be discussed here as the Cloud point, also known as the stage at which the
is Linear Kinetic Cell (LKC). paraffin particles start precipitating, WAT (Wax Appearance
The gained data shows positive performance of LKC in Temperature).3
wells with paraffin dan scale problem. Uninterrupted Scale is a salt precipitation of rich water being exposed
production without disturbance to shut in well for flowline under relatively high temperature thus reduce the solubility of
replacement due to reduced internal diameter or plugging, dissolved minerals.4 Scale formation chemically follows
efficient pump work, and increase of well head pressure and below steps,
production rate are succeed parameter of LKC performance.
Electromagnetic induction method can be used as an
alternative solution to overcome paraffin and scale problem in
oil wells.

Paraffin and scale are soluble products of well fluid, where
form on the way to surface and at surface, can be problem (Source: Clear Water Enviro Technologies, Inc)
when certain physical conditions achieved.
The most common scales found in produced water are
Characteristics, Paraffin are complex mixtures of n-alkanes, calcium carbonate, calsium sulfate, barium sulfate, iron
i-alkanes dan cycloalkanes with carbon number ranging sulfide, dan iron carbonate.1
approximately from 18 to 65. Paraffin consists of hydrocarbon
2 Hastovensyah STT MIGAS

Tabel 2. —Type of scale in oil well.2

Chemical Mineral Name Working Principle. LKC works on basic electrical principal.
Type Remarks
Sodium Chloride NaCl Halite Water Soluble LKC electromagnetically polarizes mineral molecules in water
Calcium as dipoles, consequently there will be no deposition either
CaCO3 Calsite Acid Soluble
Carbonate paraffin or scale due to each pole more attracted to magnetic
Iron Carbonate FeCO3 Siderite Acid Soluble source. The weakness of molecule bonding in fluid impact
Iron Sulfide FeS Trolite Acid Soluble
paraffin and scale remain suspended.
Iron Oxide Fe2O4 Magnetite Acid Soluble
Iron Oxide Fe2O3 Hematite Acid Soluble Electromagnetic induction energy never contained within
Magnesium the length of coil even its effect to long distance, more over
Mg(OH)2 Brusite Acid Soluble
Hydroxide polarization effect can be measured in both direction from an
Calcium Sulfate CaSO4.2H2O Gypsum Acid Insoluble infinite distance. This physics phenomenon is like to place a
Calcium Sulfate CaSO4 Anhidrite Acid Insoluble short induction coil in the center of a long length steel tubing.
Barium Sulfate BaSO4 Barite Acid Insoluble
Stronsium sulfate SrSO4 Selestite Acid Insoluble
When the coil is energized, the entire length of tubing become
Barium magnetized
BaSr(SO4)2 - Acid Insoluble
Stronsium sulfate LKC is composed of an induction coil having thousands of
feet of insulated copper wire powered by a pulsating DC
Electrical current. This pulsating energy forces a majority of
Prevent and remove, Following are common methods to the atoms within the fluid to align parallel to one another
prevent and remove paraffin and scale deposit in oil industry, lowering the energy to a level that crystals cannot form as
Chemical, to be utilised to prevent the form of paraffin and paraffin or scale deposits.
scale. Particularly for scale, an acid based chemical is used to
dissolve scale in formation, tubing and flowline. As the
formation fluids characteristic may vary time to time, routine
evaluation is a must in determining proper amount of chemical
dosage. Over dose can create corrosion problem with pipe and
other metal equipment.
Thermal, Heated crude is pumped down the tubing-casing
annulus, this transmits heat through the tubing string to melt
deposits on the tubing walls and rods. For surface facilities,
usually required line heater thus the cloud point unattained Picture 1.—Electromagnetic Working Principle in Fluids Flow
across well head up to gathering facilities.
Mechanical, other way to remove paraffin from inner wall Picture description:
of tubing, flowline and pipeline is by cutting by scrapper, Step.1 The molecules as they appear random and clinging to the sides under
normal condition in untreated oil.
brusher dan running pig. Compared to thermal and chemical Step.2 The path of the flux field. This force creates the proper energy to
treatment, mechanical method is costly because of specific polarize the molecules within the oil system.
equipment and time requirement.3 Step.3 The molecules after they have been treated with the Ener-Tec system.
Electromagnetic, is other method to overcome paraffin and The internal forces orient the positive and negative poles in such a way as to
produce a molecular chain, resulting in polarization of the molecules the entire
scale simultaneously by inducing electromagnetic fields. length of the carbon steel tube, up stream as well as down stream. Molekul
Principally, this magnetic technology was well-known in 19th setelah mendapat perlakuan dari LKC. 4
century, since the usage of lodestone and other naturally type
of magnet to reduce scale build up when cooking and washing.
Written in the history is that Egyptian has used magnet since Installation and Maintenance. The length of LKC spool is
two or three thousand years ago to reduce scale deposit in pipe approximately 1 meter. Most common LKC installation uses
with fluid water flow containing hard water. 6 flange to flange connection energized with AC (110/220 VAC,
Oil, likely water and other fluids, has molecular structure 50/60 Hz, 2-4 amp) which connected to converter box or
that is changeable if being induced. Electromagnetic bonding directly supplied from DC source to activate its
process stabilizes paraffin molecule by bonding it with other electromagnetic force.
molecule and in the same time makes paraffin unable to Not like mechanical and chemical treatment,
separate from the bonding. 4 electromagnetic system does not require specific maintenance,
evaluation periodically and costly. Regular visual checking on
amp meter is necessary in order to assure the electric current
Linear Kinetic Cell flowing into coil.
One of electromagnetic unit that become topic here is Linear
Kinetic Cell (LKC), produced by Ener-Tec, Amerika. LKC
introduced as an electromagnetic fluid stabilization system
which stabilizes oil, water or oil-water by sustaining paraffin
and/or scale dissolved.
STT MIGAS Application of Paraffin & Scale Control Unit as an Alternate Solution for Paraffinic and Scaling Production Wells 3

At Y well, which had scaling problem, appeared gradual

production and pressure decrease approaching zero and
followed by significant increase. The gained data was only
chart profile, thus performance interpretation was limited. To
identify whether there was no scale build up inside pipe wall
by using scale coupon. In this case, no deposit found on scale
coupon. When LKC being disconnected from flowline, no
scale deposit found inside pipe wall as depicted below.

Picture. 3—Spool of Y well before and after installed LKC

Interpretation. Instantaneous change of production parameter

on paraffin application was caused natural characteristic of
paraffin bonding is easier to be polarized by electromagnet.
Whilst on scale application, to dissolve hard deposit of scale
Picture. 2—Linear Kinetic Cell Unit– LKC and polarize it was timely due to scale bonding is relatively
LKC operates around 200 ºF maximum. Coil cover Productions were increase as an effect of no restriction in
material is replaceable with more heat resistance for high tubing, well head and flowline.
temperature application purpose.

Oil well aplication. LKC placement is suggested nearby well Conclusion & Suggestion
head, at flowline after wing valve, to give more effect to the Based on gained data trend from paraffin and scale application
well. Fluid polarization effect works also in reverse flow. This and briefly evaluate LKC performance, it is concluded as
is due to the strong electromagnetic induction forces realign follows:
the molecules within carbon steel, as well as the oil, creating a
molecular chain in the entire length of the casing. 1. LKC can be considered as an alternate solution to
overcome paraffin and scale problem at production wells.
Case Study 2. To obtain reliable result of LKC for paraffin application
Data. LKC Test was conducted at X well in Tanjung field, requires 1-2 week while for scale application requires 7-8
Pertamina Unit Bisnis/UB, for paraffin application. For scale weeks.
application was conducted at Y well in Limau Field, 3. It is necessary to conduct trial at well with its artificial lift
Pertamina Daerah Operasi Hulu/DOH Sumbagsel. other than sucker rod, such as esp-electric submersible
pump, in which flow turbulence is higher.
Data Analysis. Analysing data is carried out by simply 4. More turbulent moves of molecules as an effect of artificial
observe the trend of production and well head pressured data, lift type might require more polarization force.
at tubing and casing before and after LKC installed. 5. In order to be more efficient, manufacture should have a
At X well, which had paraffin problem, found instant further study regarding physical change of LKC unit to
increasing of production barrel and pressure well head. become clamp shape instead of spool shape. This intended
to ease online installation without interrupting production
Table 3.—Production Data X Well and having pipe modification.
Production (BPD) Pressure (psi)
Water Oil Casing Flowline
Average before
78.9 BFPD 51.3 BOPD 21.4 psi 37.2 psi
LKC installation
Average after
94.6 BFPD 70.3 BOPD 25.0 psi 58.3 psi Nomenclature
LKC installation BFPD = Barrel Fluid Per Day, barrel
Increment Avg. 15.7 BFPD 18.9 BOPD 3.6 psi 21.0 psi BOPD = Barrel Oil Per Day, barrel
Increment Avg. 19.9% 36.9% 16.6% 56.5% psi = pound per square inch, psi
amp = ampere, A
4 Hastovensyah STT MIGAS

Writer gratefully thanks to PT. Expertest Kaliper Nusantara,
especially Mr. Moelazim, who has allowed writer to conduct
industrial attachment at PT. Expertest Kaliper Nusantara and
who has given all necessities for succeeding this industrial
attachment. And writer would like to show his gratitude for
industrial attachment supervisor at STT MIGAS who has led
writer from the beginning until this report completed.

1. Lake, L.W., Fanchi, J.R.: “Petroleum Engineering Handbook,
Volume I General Engineering,” SPE, USA, ISBN 978-1-
55563-113-0 (2006)
2. Cholet H.: “Well Production Practical Handbook, t editions
Technip, Institut Français du Pétrole Publications (2000)
3. Haq, F.U.: “A study on Paraffin Deposition and Removal
Characteristics of Jacksonsburg-Stringtown Oil, West Virginia,”
Master of Science Thesis, Departement of Petroleum & Natural
Gas Engineering West Virginia University Morgantown, West
Virginia (1999)
4. Shroyer, L: “Water & Oil Presentation,” Ener-tec, California
5. Anonim: “The Science of Water Treatment Technologies,”
Clear Water Enviro Technologies Inc. (2004)
6. McLachlan, D: “Fundamental Water Treatment,” Fluid
Treatment Solutions, Inc. (2003)
STT MIGAS Application of Paraffin & Scale Control Unit as an Alternate Solution for Paraffinic and Scaling Production Wells 5

Picture. 4—X Well parameter chart Picture. 6—Scale coupon of Y Well flowline


Date test Production Pressure on test (psi

Bfpd Bopd Csg Pressure F.line press Subm (m)
Jan-03'05 (12.00-17.30) 91 57 20 30 107
Jan-13'05 (13.00-18.00) 71 47 24 30 23
Jan-15'05 (00.00-12.00) 83 55 20 80 23 Test malam
Jan-31'05 (12.00 -17.00) 81 51 20 35 22
Feb-09'05 (11.45-17.15) 82 53 20 35 22
Feb-28'05 (13.00-17.30) 73 50 20 35 78
Mar-19'05 (13.00-17.30) 74 49 18 30 47
Mar-31'05 (12.00-17.00) 76 50 26 30 47
Apr-12'05 (12.30-17.30) 79 50 25 30 28
Apr-14'05 (23.00-08.45) 68 49 24 69 55 Test malam .Instal LKC jam 15.15
Apr-15'05 (22.00-10.00) 80 60 28 84 55 LKC + sand heater
Apr-17'05 (22.00-10.00) 85 62 28 63 55 Test malam
Apr-18'05 (12.30-20.00) 80 60 25 22 58 Cuaca cerah
Apr-19'05 (22.15-10.45) 88 65 24 57 58 Cuaca cerah
Apr-21'05 (23.00-10.30) 90 70 28 62 67
Apr-23'05 (00.00-10.00) 100 76 28 64 67
Apr-25'05 (00.00-10.30) 106 78 27 48 67
Apr-28'05 (22.15-10.15) 109 80 20 60 36 Tanpa heater jam 15.05
Apr-29'05 (20.00-10.00) 110 81 20 50 36
May-01'05 (22.00-10.00) 116 83 20 40 52
May-03'05 (22.00-11.30) 103 79 28 80 52

Table 4.—Production data of X well Picture. 7—Installed LKC at X well flowline

Picture. 8—Installed LKC at Y well.

Picture. 5—Y Well parameter chart