Instability of Hydrocarbons Films over Mineral Surfaces Microscale Experimental Studies

by Franco M. Francisca, Victor A. Rinaldi, Juan C. Santamarina
Year: 2003


Francisca, F. M., Rinaldi, V., and Santamarina, J. C. (2003). "Instability of Hydrocarbons Films over Mineral Surfaces Microscale Experimental Studies." ASCE Journal of Environmental Engineering, Vol. 129, No. 12, pp. 1120-1128


​The fluid-mineral interaction defines the affinity of mineral surfaces for water in the presence of oil, determines wettability, affects interparticle forces, and controls the effectiveness of soil decontamination and oil recovery from reservoirs. This study involves the use of electrical impedance measurements and optical microscopy to determine the rupture time of thin oil films on mineral surfaces when water droplets are placed on the film. The results show that the time for film rupture depends on the mineral and the type of oil, it increases with the increase in oil viscosity, and it decreases in the presence of surfactants. The instability and rupture of the thin hydrocarbon films are analyzed taking into consideration surface forces and disjoining/conjoining pressure. These results are relevant to defining the ability of mineral surfaces to become wetted by water, leading to the displacement of organic films.


Biofilm Oil recovery Porous media Hydrocarbons Mineral deposits