Case Studies

Application & Development of Bactericide for Oilfield Flooding in China

1. Frequently used bactericides in oilfield flooding and working mechanism

1.1 Oxidation Bactericide

Oxidation bactericideis also called oxidation toxicant, which indicates the strong toxicity of this product in application. Its fundamental mechanism is to destroy macromolecular substances like proteins by means of strong oxidizing subjects. Since the main purpose of using bactericide in oilfield flooding is to kill various bacteria, fungus, microbe, etc., whose primary components are macromolecules such as proteins, this kind of bactericide largely relies on the extent of oxidation. The common composition of oxidation bactericide is concentrated nitric acid, concentrated sulfuric acid, perchloric acid, chlorine and ozone, among which the most widely used in oilfield flooding are chlorine and chloride powder.

1.2 Non-oxidation Bactericide 

Non-oxidation bactericiderefers to other bactericidesexcept oxidation ones and the mechanisms are also different. One is to permeate into bacteria body and change some tiny little groups, which results in the loss of enzyme activity and invalidity of bacterial function. Another one is to destroy the structure of cell wall or permeability of cell membrane and enter into bacterial body. These products are glutaraldehyde, organic amine and isothiazolinone.

2. Current problems

2.1 Slow development of new types

With higher demand and stricter requirements on oil products, demand for bactericides in oilfield flooding increases. However, researches on these products are few and the development is slow. This is the main problem oil companies are facing.

2.2 Conventional products surplus

Conventional products usually have no disinfecting function for variations of microorganism. Therefore, after a short-term sales climax in the beginning, there would be a large hoard of conventional products, losing its effectiveness in the last.

2.3 Poor product quality

Quality of bactericide is directly related to the removing of harmful substances. However, its efficiency often cannot meet national standard. According to a survey report, qualified samples only take 85%. Consequently, there would be a large chance to have quality problem in application. This has something to do with the lack of manufacturer credit as well as the lax examination system.

2.4 Less focus on water flooding

Oil company managers often put more efforts on the acquisition of profits while ignore product quality. This is the fundamental reason why present oil products cannot meet quality standard. A typical instance is oilfield flooding. Some managers and technicians regard this process as unnecessary and useless and even cancel it in production. This may save a few cost in a short time; but it would bring more waste in the long run because the produced products fails to meet national standard.

3. Developing tendency of oilfield flooding bactericide

3.1 Study on new type bactericide

The most direct and effective solution to the surplus of conventional bactericide is to increase technical input and encourage researchers to develop new bactericide. Since bactericide is composed of large quantities of chemicals, it is easy to degrade. Therefore, production of new products has to be based on deep knowledge of supply and demand relationship.

3.2 Study on multifunctional bactericide

As variations of bacteria in flooding water come out ceaselessly, multifunctional bactericide has a more distinctive effect hence is more favorable. Therefore, study in this field is an important developing direction and has great potential. Also, companies should provide support in finance and devices.

3.3 Formation of ‘Three-in-One’ processing mode

The study, production and marketing of bactericide are closely connected to each other, none of which could be ignored. The formation of ‘Three–in-One’ processing mode can guarantee the products meeting the demand of oilfield flooding as well as market condition. On one hand, bactericides would meet national quality standard; on the other hand, oilfield flooding could be better dealt with. This would be a large advancement for oil companies.

4. Conclusions

Petroleum is the black gold of a country. To make the products completely meet national standards, the only way is to take care in details. Bactericide in oilfield flooding is an important necessity for oil companies. This discussion is expected to enlightening for readers.


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