Oilfield Glossary
Oilfield Glossary
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soap

1. n. [Drilling Fluids]
A collective term for organic salts made by reacting an aliphatic carboxylic acid with a base. The base can be an alkali-metal hydroxide (NaOH or KOH), alkaline-earth hydroxide (Ca(OH)2 or Mg(OH)2) or oxide (CaO or MgO). Fatty acids are the carboxylic acids often used to make soaps for oilfield applications, such as emulsifiers for oil muds. Aluminum soaps are used as defoamers in drilling fluids. Sodium and potassium soaps are detergents to emulsify oil into water.