Chip-DSC 1 – crude oil analysis – wax appearance temperature

Crude oil – quality control – wax content – wax melting

Crude oil is a complex mixture comprising a wide range of heavy and light alkanes, alkenes, and aromatics. In order to refine crude oil for various applications such as engine fuel or raw material for polymers and chemistry, it undergoes a process of separation and purification. This is essential because different compounds within crude oil serve distinct purposes.

To assess the quality and composition of crude oil rapidly, efficient quality control tests are invaluable. Differential Scanning Calorimetry (DSC) emerges as a useful tool in this context, providing crucial information.

App. Nr. 02-011-011 Chip-DSC 1 – crude oil analysis – wax appearance temperature

One particularly noteworthy feature in the DSC diagram of crude oil is the Individual Wax Appearance Temperature (WAT). The diagram displays both heating (red) and cooling (blue) curves of a crude oil sample within a temperature range of -20°C to 140°C. As the oil is heated, solid components transition into a liquid state, causing a reduction in viscosity. This melting process manifests as a broad peak on the diagram, reflecting the simultaneous melting of various compounds across a specific temperature range.

During cooling, the crystallization process occurs, marked by an exothermic effect. Given that oils contain heavy organic compounds that are not fully liquid at room temperature, a wax-like component is always present. While heating leads to a challenging-to-evaluate broad melting peak, cooling reveals a distinct and sharp onset of crystallization. This onset temperature serves as a defining characteristic, allowing for the characterization of individual crude oil compositions. Leveraging this effect during cooling in DSC can prove instrumental in quality control processes.

Related instruments

Chip-DSC 1

  • The entry-level model with replaceable sensor
  • Cost-effective, highly innovative and compact DSC
  • RT up to 450°C
Scroll to Top