Chemicals Used in Petroleum Production - WorldOfChemicals

Chemicals Used in Crude Oil Production

Oil Production

There are various chemical formulations required in the production, handling and transportation of petroleum or crude oil. Majority of chemicals used in oil production are complex formations of various chemicals. They could be a mixture of diluents, reactants and reaction products. Normally, these chemical formulations have two main constituents, which give the additives their primary functionality.


Production, Handling and Transportation

The chemicals are deigned based on the type of operation and duration within the oilfield. The oilfield chemicals are used in various stages such as drilling, cementing and well stimulation, which may remain as residues in the crude oil. Crude oil’s outflow from the well must be checked during the production phase, where it is susceptible to deposition of scales, wax hydrates and asphaltenes. Separation from gas and water takes place during oil production.

Chemicals are required during the logistical handling and transportation of crude oil in tankers, pipelines or terminals. The flow can be improved in pipelines with the addition of drag reducing agents. Cargoes are stabilized with the help of chemicals such as mercaptan scavengers, pour point depressants and hydrogen sulfide scavengers.

The chemicals that are used during the post production phase help to control hydrogen sulfide formation, bacteria formation, scale formation, wax deposition, hydrate formation and asphaltene precipitation. These chemicals ensure stability of petroleum during its transportation to the refinery for conversion to petroleum products.



Chemical formulations used in the production and transportation of petroleum are as follows:


Antiscalants find applications in the crude oil production process, where mineral scale deposition takes place in the surface treating facilities, downhole pipework and pores of rock formations. Antiscalants help in controlling various severe conditions like high dissolved solids, high temperature and high hardness.



Biocides are used to control the growth of bacteria in crude oil production, where they are present in the associated waters. Biocides can be removed from crude oil after their use as they are soluble in water.Biocides help in controlling the growth of sulfate reducing, acid producing, anaerobic and anaerobic bacteria.


Corrosion Inhibitors

Corrosion is a major issue in the oil industry, which results from water, hydrogen sulfide, carbon dioxide and microbial activity. Corrosion inhibitors are used in refineries, reinjection wells, barges and transportation lines. Corrosion inhibitors bring down the costs and extend the life of pipelines, storage tanks and equipment.


Fluid Loss Control Additives 

Fluid loss control additives control and reduce mud filtrate in both oil-based and water-based fluids systems. Fluid loss control additives disperse without the help of wetting agents. Fluid loss control additives promote well stability for crude oil as well as minimize differential sticking. They can be used in high temperatures.



Lubricants find applications in drilling, production, processing and refining phases of crude oil. Lubricants extend the service life of machinery and equipment as well as reduce oil changes. Lubricants facilitate reduction of equipment failures, extension of maintenance intervals and lower unscheduled shutdowns.


Paraffin Control Agents

Paraffin control agents is a mixture of aromatic solvents and surface-active organic compounds that is formulated to control the deposition of paraffin. It is effective in the removal of accumulated paraffin over a broad range of waxes. Paraffin control agents are used in surface equipment, tank bases and back washing filters.



The oilfield chemicals can be categorized into two categories. The first set of chemicals are meant to control the residues that remain within the crude oil after production. The second set of chemicals are meant to stabilize for transportation. The exact concentrations of chemicals in petroleum going to the refineries is not certain. Registration for the presence of such impurities in crude oil is not mandatory as they are in the ppm range. uses cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. By using this site, you agree to our Privacy Policy and our Terms of Use. X