The deposition behavior of asphaltic material from Abu Dhabi crude oil induced by electrodeposition onto graphite electrodes in direct current (DC) electric fields was investigated experimentally. A mixture of dead crude oil and synthetic brine of 280k ppm salinity was utilized. Two electrodes were immersed in the crude oil sample and a DC current with three current densities of 10, 20, and 30 A/m2 was applied. The electrodes hanged from two load cells used to record deposits mass with experiment time. The effect of different operating conditions such as current density and experiment time on asphaltene electrodeposition has been examined. Anodic and cathodic deposits were observed at different operating conditions. The results revealed that asphaltic nature deposits were detected on the anode; hence, they possess net negative charge. The mass of deposits on the electrodes increased with experiment time and current density, however, the increase rate was faster at higher current density and experiment times below 10 hrs. No charge alterations noticed with increasing run time and current density. A maximum of 18% of original asphaltic material in crude oil sample was arrested on the anode. The solid asphaltic deposits were analyzed by SEM imaging. Electrodeposition has the potential to induce asphaltene deposition from targeted Abu Dhabi crude oils in the presence of brine. Electrodeposition can be utilized as a technique to solve asphaltene deposition problem.


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