Hydrates & Flow Assurance

The global demand for energy is expected to increase 50% by 2030, requiring the production of remote oil and gas fields in deep water. To succeed in meeting this demand we must deepen our understanding of how high-value fluids travel under these extreme conditions. Flow assurance entails the management and avoidance, when possible, of solid particles or deposits in pipelines, which can result in environmental, operational, and safety hazards. Gas hydrate is a chief flow assurance concern, as this ice-like solid forms through the contact of natural gas and water at high pressure. Hydrate blockages represent a global obstacle to the successful production of deep-water assets.

Our research in the Hydrates and Flow Assurance area aims to address two key questions:

  1. How do we quantify the risk of a pipeline blockage in harsh environments?
  2. What operational and chemical strategies can we develop to minimise this risk?

The laboratory operates with a blend of experimental and computational investigation. Microscopic facilities focus on probing interfacial phenomena, such as detecting initial hydrate growth and the energy bound between hydrate and oil phases; this information is used to capture fundamental information about how hydrate-containing systems are organised. The laboratory also deploys macroscopic experiments to study how hydrate plugs form and melt; these data are used to (i) test hypotheses from microscopic experiments and (ii) produce industrially relevant heuristics and models to address the above questions. The laboratory uses computational investigations to test the behavior and sensitivities of these models; this information in turn guides the design and execution of future experiments.

Publications

2017

Journal

Characterization of Crude Oils That Naturally Resist Hydrate Plug Formation

ZM Aman, WGT Syddall, A Haber, Y Qin, BF Graham, EF May, ML Johns, Paul F Pickering

Energy & Fuels

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2017

Journal

Gas Hydrate Thermodynamic Inhibition with MDEA for Reduced MEG Circulation

M Akhfash, M Arjmandi, ZM Aman, JA Boxall, EF May

Journal of Chemical & Engineering Data

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2017

Journal

High Pressure Rheological Measurements of Gas Hydrate-in-Oil Slurries

Yahua Qin, Zachary M Aman, Paul F Pickering, Michael L Johns,, Eric F May

Journal of Non-Newtonian Fluid Mechanics

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2017

Journal

Microscale Detection of Hydrate Blockage Onset in High-Pressure Gas–Water Systems

M Akhfash, ZM Aman, J Du, PF Pickering, ML Johns, CA Koh, EF May

Energy & Fuels

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2017

Journal

Modelling hydrate deposition and sloughing in gas-dominant pipelines

Mauricio Di Lorenzo, Zachary M Aman, Karen Kozielski, Bruce WE Norris, Michael L Johns, Eric F May

The Journal of Chemical Thermodynamics

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2017

Journal

Reduction of Clathrate Hydrate Film Growth Rate by Naturally-Occurring Surface Active Components

Shane Andrew Morrissy, Angus J. McKenzie, Brendan Francis Graham, Michael L. Johns, Eric F May, Zachary M. Aman

Energy & Fuels

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2017

Journal

Reduction of Clathrate Hydrate Film Growth Rate by Naturally-Occurring Surface Active Components

SA Morrissy, AJ McKenzie, BF Graham, ML Johns, EF May, ZM Aman

Energy & Fuels

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2016

Journal

Crystal growth phenomena of CH4 + C3H8 + CO2 ternary gas hydrate systems

ZT Ward, ML Johns, EF May, CA Koh, ZM Aman

Journal of Natural Gas Science and Engineering In Press

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2016

Journal

Gas Hydrate Plug Formation in Partially Dispersed Water-Oil Systems

M Akhfash, ZM Aman, SY Ahn, ML Johns, EF May

Chemical Engineering Science 140, p337 - 347

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2016

Journal

Hydrate formation and deposition in a gas-dominant flowloop: Initial studies of the effect of velocity and subcooling

ZM Aman, M Di-Lorenzo, K Kozielski, CA Koh, P Warrier, ML Johns, EF May

Journal of Natural Gas Science and Engineering In Press

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2016

Journal

Hydrate Plug Dissociation via Active Heating: Uniform Heating and a Simple Predictive Model

JA Boxall, SH Ng, ZM Aman, BWE Norris, TJ Hughes, K Ioannou, EF May

Energy & Fuels In Press

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2016

Journal

Interfacial Phenomena in Gas Hydrate Systems

ZM Aman, CA Koh

Chemical Society Reviews 45, p1678 - 1690

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2016

Journal

Raman Spectroscopic Studies of Clathrate Hydrate Formation in the Presence of Hydrophobized Particles

H Li, P Stanwix, ZM Aman, ML Johns, EF May, L Wang

Journal of Physical Chemistry A 120 (3), p417 - 424

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2016

Journal

Rapid Assessments of Hydrate Blockage Risk in Oil-Continuous Flowlines

BWE Norris, LE Zerpa, CA Koh, ML Johns, EF May, ZM Aman

Journal of Natural Gas Science and Engineering 30, p284 - 294

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2015

Journal

Adhesion force interactions between cyclopentane hydrate and physically and chemically modified surfaces

ZM Aman, ED Sloan, AK Sum, CA Koh

Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics 16, p25121 - 25128

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2015

Journal

Development of a Tool to Assess Hydrate-Plug-Formation Risk in Oil-Dominant Pipelines

ZM Aman, LE Zerpa, CA Koh, AK Sum

SPE Journal 20, p884 - 892

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2015

Journal

Effect of Brine Salinity on the Stability of Hydrate-in-Oil Dispersions and Water-in-Oil Emulsions

ZM Aman, A Haber, NNA Ling, A Thornton, ML Johns, EF May

Energy & Fuels 29 (12), p7948 - 7955

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2015

Journal

Hydrate plug formation risk with varying watercut and inhibitor concentrations

YH Sohn, J Kim, K Shin, D Chang, Y Seo, ZM Aman, EF May

Chemical Engineering Science 126, p711 - 718

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2015

Journal

Hydrate Shell Growth Measured Using NMR

A Haber, M Akhfash, CK Loh, ZM Aman, EO Fridjonsson, EF May, ML Johns

Langmuir 31, p8786 - 8794

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2015

Journal

Micromechanical Cohesive Force Measurements Between Precipitated Asphaltene Solids and Cyclopentane Hydrates

SA Morrissy, VW Lim, EF May, ML Johns, ZM Aman, BF Graham

Energy & Fuels 29, p6277 - 6285

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2014

Journal

Corrosion Inhibitor Interaction at Hydrate-Oil Interfaces from Differential Scanning Calorimetry Measurements

ZM Aman, K Pfeiffer, SJ Vogt, ML Johns, EF May

Colloids and Surfaces A 448, p81 - 87

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2014

Journal

Effect of Kinetic Hydrate Inhibitor Polyvinylcaprolactam on Cyclopentane Hydrate Cohesion Forces and Growth

R Wu, ZM Aman, EF May, KA Kozielski, PG Hartley, N Maeda, AK Sum

Energy & Fuels 28, p3632 - 3637

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2014

Journal

Hydrate Formation in Gas-Dominant Systems Using a Single-Pass Flowloop

M Di Lorenzo, ZM Aman, GS Soto, ML Johns, KA Kozielski, EF May

Energy & Fuels 28, p3043 - 3052

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2014

Journal

Methane hydrate bed formation in a visual autoclave: cold restart and Reynolds number dependence

ZM Aman, M Akhfash, ML Johns, EF May

Journal of Chemical & Engineering Data 60, p409 - 417

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2014

Journal

Quantitative kinetic inhibitor comparisons and memory effect measurements from hydrate formation probability distributions

EF May, R Wu, MA Kelland, ZM Aman, KA Kozielski, PG Hartley, N Maeda

Chemical Engineering Science 107, p1 - 12

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2014

Journal

Underinhibited Hydrate Formation and Transport Investigated Using a Single-Pass Gas-Dominant Flowloop

M Di Lorenzo, ZM Aman, K Kozielski, BWE Norris, ML Johns, EF May

Energy & Fuels 28, p7274 - 7284

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2013

Journal

Hydrate Formation and Particle Distributions in Gas–Water Systems

M Akhfash, JA Boxall, ZM Aman, ML Johns, EF May

Chemical Engineering Science 104, p177 - 188

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2013

Journal

Measurements of Cohesion Hysteresis between Cyclopentane Hydrates in Liquid Cyclopentane

N Maeda, ZM Aman, KA Kozielski, CA Koh, ED Sloan, AK Sum

Energy & Fuels 27, p5168 - 5174

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2013

Journal

Methane–Propane Mixed Gas Hydrate Film Growth on the Surface of Water and Luvicap EG Solutions

R Wu, KA Kozielski, PG Hartley, EF May, J Boxall, N Maeda

Energy & Fuels 27, p2548 - 2554

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2013

Journal

Probability Distributions of Gas Hydrate Formation

R Wu, KA Kozielski, PG Hartley, EF May, J Boxall, N Maeda

AIChE Journal 59, p2640 - 2646

2011

Journal

Measurement and Modeling of Hydrate Composition during Formation of Clathrate Hydrate from Gas Mixtures

TJ Hughes, KN Marsh

Industrial and Engineering Chemistry Research 50, p694 - 700

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2011

Journal

Methane Semi-Clathrate Hydrate Phase Equilibria with Tetraisopentylammonium Fluoride

TJ Hughes, KN Marsh

Journal of Chemical & Engineering Data 56, p4597 - 4603

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