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The problems associated with the disposal of oils recovered from accidental spillage are rarely appreciated fully until they are encountered in realistic practical situations. This paper draws on the world-wide experiences of teams handling the problems in the field and utilizes several spill incidents to illustrate the range of problems and some of their solutions.
The physical changes leading to handling problems are defined and consideration is given to the mechanism, the variability of the problem, and the fundamental factors (temperature, crude source, energy input, etc.) which lead to difficult handling situations, for example, the pumpability of water-in-oil emulsions. The resulting loss of equipment efficiency often requires a compromise to be made and a decision commensurate with existing circumstances.
Examination of schemes for handling, treating, and recovery of emulsified oils in an oil refinery complex leads to the conclusion that there are no universal standardized procedures, and the treatment of such materials requires a unique solution for their satisfactory disposal at each location.
oils, waste oils, disposal, oil spills, emulsion
Technical coordinator, British Petroleum Co. Ltd., London,