Scaling in wells, lines, and machines

Scaling is the general term for build up of incrustations, which sediment from the liquid in the pipe, machine. We are only talking about scaling in hydro carbons here, for scaling in water system see Merus water homepage.

Either the scale forms out of the minerals solved in the crude or out of the water which is very often found in the crude. The scale builds up at the inner surfaces of the pipe, and it slowly decreases the cross section of the pipe. If there are no counter measures taken, the pipe internal could be completely blocked over time.
Depending on the type of scale, it is sometimes possible to add chemicals to the crude in order to reduce the scaling. There are two problems caused by adding chemicals, the chemicals which are added in to the crude, have to be removed downstream out of the crude again, and of course the scale inhibitors have their cost. The cost of maintaining the dosing equipment, the cost of transporting and storing the chemical at site and of’ course the chemical cost itself. In a lot of cases the scale inhibitors are only reducing the problem or slowing down the blocking of the pipe. When the pipe internal is block, it requires mechanical or chemical cleaning, and this is additional cost and downtime.
In the wells it is not possible to introduce chemical dosing.  To clear the scale in the well, it requires chemical soaking. Mechanical clean by wire line can clear a partially block conduit.  If this scale is not cleaned, the well production will decrease overtime.  But there are ingredients in the certain type of crude which scale inhibitors cannot treat. In such cases the only option the operators have is to replace the pipes. This produces high maintenance costs and loss of production.

Merus is able stop or control most forms of scaling in lines

Installed as far as possible upstream, the scale forming elements of the crude are kept solved in the crude or the water in the crude. So the scaling is lowered significantly or even stopped totally. The adding of scale inhibitors is in most cases not required any more. If the salts/minerals responsible for the scale are soluble in the liquid, Merus keeps these in solved state.There are cases where  or more elements react together to form scale. Merus was able to keep these scale forming elements in separate state and avoid the scale formation due to the reaction between them, so no hard scale was forming, these can be treated in the dedicated machines downstream.

Merus has developed a so called downhole tool to install direct in the well

This downhole tool is possible to install in the tubing in the well. The downhole tool is just installed on the tubing and can be positioned at any depth in the well, or direct below the pump itself.
The downhole tool is manufactured out of the same steel as the tubing, and fulfills the same specification of the tubing if it comes to pressure or temperature. Inside the downhole tool, there is a special Merus Ring developed only for this purpose. This Merus Ring is made out of pure silver. Silver can’t stand a direct contact with the crude and the conditions deep underground, so the design of the downhole tool ensures the Silver Merus Ring never has direct contact to the hydro carbon itself.


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scale oil well after christmastree

Further images (click to enlarge)