Chloride Extraction of Bitumen Samples

The microwave-assisted solvent extraction method for the determination of the salt content in bitumen samples represents an efficient alternative to the rather time and cost consuming established methods (e.g. ASTM D6470, D-3230 or IP 77/72).

Accurate salt content determination in petrochemical products such as crude oil and bitumen is of utmost importance to petrochemical companies. The presence of sodium chloride causes several problems during transportation and the following refining processes, such as corrosion in transportation lines, fouling, and deactivation of catalysts. For these reasons refineries employ various desalination processes and analytical tests for the measurement of salt and water content present in crude oil and related petrochemical products.

Conventional and standardized tests for the determination of salt in crude oils and related petrochemical products are well established, but are known to be complicated and very labor intensive and time consuming.

Standard methods, for example, ASTM D-6470 and D-3230 as well as IP 77/72, are inefficient and are notapplicable to a wide variety of petrochemical samples.ASTM D-6470 and IP 77/72 involve the extraction ofwater-soluble chlorides under atmospheric conditionscombined with titration or potentiometricmeasurement.

Applying these methodologies to high-viscosity petrochemical products containing high amounts of water or solvent can lead to variable and erroneous chloride results.

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