Scientists Dissolve Crude Oil in Water to Study Its Composition

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Scientists Dissolve Crude Oil in Water to Study Its Composition

Researchers from MIPT, Skoltech, the Joint Institute for High Temperatures of the Russian Academy of Sciences, and Lomonosov Moscow State University have offered a new approach to oil composition analysis. They used high temperature and pressure to dissolve oil in water and analyze its composition. The new method is compliant with the green chemistry principle as it makes it possible to avoid using environmentally hazardous solvents. The paper was published in the Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry journal.

Crude oil is almost never utilized in its raw form. It is necessary, however, to know its precise composition to make refining as efficient as possible. Crude oil consists of over 100,000 compounds, with the exact composition of the sample varying based on the field it was extracted at. The extreme complexity of crude oil makes it impossible to separate into individual compounds. Heavier fractions, which are nonvolatile at 300 degrees Celsius, are yet to be properly studied. It is known that they consist chiefly of phenols, ketones, carbazoles, pyridines, quinolines, dibenzofurans, and carboxylic acids. In addition to that, crude oil from some fields may also contain sulphuric compounds. Many hydrocarbons have identical formulas, with the same number of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen atoms, but differ in their arrangements, i.e., they are isomers.   ...

 

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