1. n. [Drilling Fluids]
A synthetic hydrocarbon liquid made by the polymerization of ethylene, H2C=CH2. LAOs and other synthetic fluids are used in synthetic-base drilling fluids and other applications in which refined oils might otherwise be used if not for HSE concerns. LAOs have a linear structure with a double bond (olefin) at the end of the chain, making them more biodegradable than other olefins. LAOs can be catalytically reacted to move the double bond toward the center of the chain length to convert them to isomerized olefins, IOs.
Alternate Form: LAO