Speed-up of Soxhlet Core Cleaning in RCAL

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Speed-up of Soxhlet Core Cleaning in RCAL

Category : New publication

Pouya Soltani has published his first paper at PermLab in the SPE Reservoir Evaluation & Engineering Journal. The main idea of this paper is to introduce a methodology of measuring the cleaning time that can be implemented as a routine screening tool in RCAL projects to nominate the proper solvent, which can reduce the Soxhlet cleaning time.

The process of running core analysis experiments (in both RCAL and SCAL) is very time-consuming. As all plug samples should be cleaned during the RCAL phase; therefore, finding of a solvent that can speed-up this process is necessary. The cleanliness of a core sample during Soxhlet extraction is usually determined by monitoring the color of solvents, qualitatively. The main contribution of this study was to propose a methodology during RCAL to nominate the best solvent during the Soxhlet cleaning experiments. By introducing a state-of-the-art quantitative method, the cleaning time of different solvents (i.e., tetrachloroethene, acetone, toluene, chloroform, xylene, and n-hexane) was investigated. This quantitative method is based on turbidity measurement of the solvent that siphons periodically from the Soxhlet extractor. Moreover, the wettability alteration of the implemented solvents was monitored by contact angle measurements.

Designed Soxhlet setup. a) Heater, b) Round-bottom flask, c) Two-neck extractor, d) Condenser, e) Sampling Syringe. The solvent samples are taken from part e by a needle syringe.