It struck me a few years ago that there was a lack of general literature providing an overview of all the various issues of oilfield production chemistry. Certainly, there was not a book that focuses on the structures of production chemicals and their environmental properties that could be helpful to service companies and chemical suppliers in designing better or greener products.
Although I was sure that there were others who could do a better job at writing such a book, I decided to have a go. This book is primarily a handbook of production chemicals and as such should be useful to oil and gas companies, oilfield chemical service companies, and chemical suppliers.
The introduction and main points in each chapter should also be useful for university students wishing to study oilfield production chemistry. If you are working for a chemical supply company and are unfamiliar with the oil and gas industry, I would recommend reading up on the basics of upstream oil and gas production before delving into this book.
I have limited the book to sixteen chapters on production chemicals and an introductory chapter, which also includes environmental issues. Some of the production chemicals are specifically for use downhole such as acid stimulation and water and gas shut-off chemicals. I have not included all stimulation chemicals such as those used in proppant fracturing, as these are not usually considered production chemicals.
I have included chemicals used in water injection wells for enhanced oil recovery, such as oxygen scavengers and biocides, but I have not discussed polymers and surfactants, which are used to further enhance oil recovery (EOR), or tracers. Polymers and surfactants are not very widely used for EOR today.
However, if the oil price continues to remain very high, their use may become a more economically rewarding and prevalent EOR technique. In each chapter, I have begun by introducing the problem for which there is a production chemical (e.g., scale, corrosion).
Then, I have briefly discussed all methods to treat the problem, both chemical and nonchemical. This is followed by a thorough discussion of the structural classes of production chemicals for that particular chapter usually with a brief discussion on how they can be performance tested. I have also mentioned the environmental properties of known chemicals where such data are available.
I have also endeavored to mention whether a chemical or technique has been successfully used in the field, whenever a report is available. I have included many references at the end of each chapter so the reader can look up the details on the synthesis, testing, theory, or application of each type of production chemical.
I have endeavored to be as thorough and up-to-date as possible in the literature, not wishing to leave out any structural class of production chemical, whether they have been used in the field or not. The references are from patents or patent applications, books, journals, and conference proceedings that are readily obtainable.
Many patents and patent applications claim a wide spectrum of production chemical structures. This is often standard practice from service companies and chemical suppliers not wishing to divulge the chemistry of their best products to their competition.
This lack of specificity may not be so helpful to the reader, so I have therefore chosen to mention only preferred chemical structures in the patent, particularly those synthesized and/or tested. I have deliberately not mentioned in the text of each chapter the names of authors or companies and institutes behind the articles and patents so as to be as impartial as possible.
However, all this information can be gleaned by looking up the references. Nearly all the patent data can be obtained on-line for free from the Internet except a few older patents. There are a number of production chemical articles, which do not disclose any chemical names or structures, rather they only give laboratory and/or field test data and sometimes environmental data on chemical A, chemical B, and so forth.
These articles I have deemed as less useful to the reader and cannot be correlated with any patents where chemical structures are given, and, therefore, I have omitted many of them from the references. Those that are mentioned are usually included because they contain useful information on test procedures and/or environmental data.
This book is an overview of production chemicals and does not discuss the actual handling and application of the chemicals in the laboratory or field. Thus, the author cannot be held responsible for the consequences of handling or using any of the chemicals discussed in this book. I hope you will find this book useful in your studies or work. That, at least, was my intention in deciding to write it.
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