1. n. [Enhanced Oil Recovery]
A set of techniques used to prevent or considerably reduce paraffin deposition. Paraffin control might involve the following options:
- use of paraffin inhibitors
- maintaining pipe surfaces in a water-wet condition because paraffin will not adhere to water (however, the presence of natural surfactants in some crude oils converts water-wet surfaces to an oil-wet condition, making this technique effective only temporarily)
- coating the pipe with plastic to provide a smooth surface and reduce paraffin adhesion
- reducing heat transfer to maintain the oil temperature above its cloud point.
Filling the annulus of a well with a fluid that has poorer heat transfer properties than the oil maintains the temperature of the flowing crude oil above its cloud point.