• Why multi-element analytical capabilities are essential for the crude oil market

Analytical Instrumentation

Why multi-element analytical capabilities are essential for the crude oil market

Aug 15 2022

In today’s crude oil market, multi-element analytical capabilities are essential. 

At one time, sulphur was the top concern. However, contamination or adulteration through salts and other chlorine-bearing compounds or metals such as nickel and vanadium are common. If unmeasured and not corrected, chlorine leads to corrosion damage in blending operations, pipelines, or during the refining process. When iron, nickel, and vanadium are present in crudes, they negatively impact the fluid catalytic cracking (FCC) process when deposited on the catalyst, resulting in the poisoning of the catalyst.

Rigaku EDXRF (energy dispersive X-ray fluorescence) benchtop instruments offer the industry the flexibility and reliability needed to monitor sulphur, chlorine, metals, and other elements using a single system. They can detect and correct for chlorine and other elements, so the sulphur reading is not affected. With multi-element capabilities and low limits of detection, Rigaku EDXRF analysers give users the ability to quickly adapt to future petroleum applications and meet compliance with multiple testing methods and standards.

Rigaku EDXRF benchtops are well-suited for measuring sulphur in crude oil per ASTM D4294, metals in crude and residual fuel oils per ASTM D8252, and chlorine in crude per ASTM D4929 — all test methods with one instrument. Systems include the compact NEX QC Series for routine quality control needs, the advanced NEX DE for more demanding workflows, and the powerful NEX CG II indirect excitation analyser for complex applications and research. 

Multi-element analysers for fast, reliable crude oil analysis
NEX QC Series analysers, from Rigaku, combine superior performance capabilities with affordability. Users can measure sulphur, metals, and more. These instruments are lightweight, compact, and do not require an external PC. The intuitive touchscreen interface, built-in printer, and optional portable roller case make these instruments easy to use and convenient. Whether on the plant floor or in remote field environments, these analysers are ideal for measuring sulphur in crude per ASTM D4294 and performing other petroleum-related applications. 

Specially designed for rapid elemental analysis, NEX DE is a high-performance benchtop that helps users ensure compliance quicker and easier. It offers quick analysis of nickel and vanadium per ASTM D8252-19 and for measuring chlorine per ASTM D4929 Part C — and much more. Users can quickly analyse sulphur, vanadium, iron, and nickel in crude, residual fuel oils, and other heavy hydrocarbon oils.

NEX CG II is Rigaku’s highly versatile all-in-one petroleum analyser offering fast, reliable measuring and monitoring for ultra-low and trace element concentrations up to percent levels. Unlike conventional EDXRF instruments, NEX CG II is an indirect excitation system using secondary targets rather than tube filters. Monochromatic and polarized excitation from secondary targets in full 90° Cartesian Geometry eliminates background noise and results in exceptionally low detection limits.

NEX CG II provides exceptional performance for ASTM and international compliance for ultra-low sulphur applications and delivers the lowest chlorine detection limits for ASTM D4929. These advantages and features make NEX CG II an ideal multi-purpose tool for technicians. After desalting and desulphurization, refineries can analyse for any remaining low levels and trace chlorine to help avoid potential damage during the refining process. These superior analytical capabilities rival larger, more expensive systems and replaces the need for multiple single-element benchtops.

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