Multi-functional Flow Assurance Chemicals: Corrosion and Kinetic Hydrate Inhibition from Maleic Anhydride:N-Vinyl Caprolactam Copolymers and Synergists
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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Original versionKelland, M.A., Pomicpic, J.C., Ghosh, R. & Undheim, A. (2023) Multi-functional Flow Assurance Chemicals: Corrosion and Kinetic Hydrate Inhibition from Maleic Anhydride:N-Vinyl Caprolactam Copolymers and Synergists. Energy & Fuels, 37(13), 8964-8975. 10.1021/acs.energyfuels.3c00991
Water-based flow assurance issues include corrosion, scale, and gas hydrate formation. Chemical solutions to mitigate these issues usually require separate inhibitors, which sometimes can lead to compatibility difficulties. Herein, we report studies on maleic-based copolymers to combat hydrate and corrosion with a view to optimizing for scale inhibition also. The product of maleic anhydride:N-vinyl caprolactam copolymer reacted with 3-dibutylaminopropylamine (MA:VCap-DBAPA) and its amine oxide derivative (MA:VCap-DBAPA-AO) were the kinetic hydrate inhibitor (KHI) polymers investigated. Due to limited CO2 corrosion inhibition (CI) by the polymers alone, various oxygen-, sulfur-, and nitrogen-based additives were screened for improved CO2 CI and possible KHI synergy. KHI performance screening tests were conducted under high pressure with a structure II-forming natural gas mixture in steel rocking cells using the slow (1 °C/h) constant cooling method. CO2 corrosion inhibition was measured by linear polarization resistance in a stirred 1 L CO2 bubble test apparatus using C1018 steel coupons and 3.6 wt % brine at 20.5 °C. Several sulfur-based additives improved the CI efficiency of the maleic polymers, especially butyl thioglycolate and 2-aminoethanethiol, without a negative effect on the KHI performance. For example, 2500 ppm MA:VCap-DBAPA plus 1000 ppm butyl thioglycolate gave an average hydrate onset temperature (To) of 4.4 °C (12.7 °C below the To for no additive) and 99.7% CI efficiency. In contrast to a classic fatty acid imidazoline surfactant corrosion inhibitor, butyl thioglycolate was also found to greatly enhance the CI efficiency of industrial KHIs, poly(N-vinyl caprolactam) (PVCap) and N-vinyl pyrrolidone:N-vinyl caprolactam copolymer, with no antagonism to the KHI performance of the polymer. In addition, butyl thioglycolate boosted the KHI performance of PVCap. The use of small synergists such as butyl thioglycolate avoids the use of classical surfactant corrosion inhibitors which can lead to tighter emulsions and poor overboard oil-in-water quality.