Carbonaceous build up within the oil and gas industry contributes to a wide range of failure modes leading to down time, replacement costs or possibly catastrophic failures. The chemistry of extracted crude oils is quite complex, including a wide range of carbonaceous species of various functionalities, sizes and so on. All of this complicates the prediction of build-up because it can be difficult to isolate specific mechanisms of deposition during extraction, refinement or use.
We are currently working with industrial partners at BP, through the BP International Center for Advanced Materials, and academic partners at the University of Cambridge, Imperial College and the University of Manchester to develop surface modification routes for conventional structural alloys to mitigate carbonaceous build up.
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