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Corrosion Reviews

Editor-in-Chief: Latanision, Ronald M. / Rebak, Raúl B.

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Volume 34, Issue 1-2


Corrosion of multiphase flow pipelines: the impact of crude oil

Zi Ming Wang / Jian Zhang
Published Online: 2015-12-12 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/corrrev-2015-0053


The control of multiphase flow corrosion during oil production is a challenging task. In this review, the impact of crude oil on pipeline corrosion is broadly discussed, with the notion to reduce corrosion risks of pipelines in aggressive field conditions. First, the properties, emulsion stability, and multiphase flow patterns of crude oil fluids are concisely summarized and correlated to the corrosion behavior. Second, for proper evaluation of the corrosiveness of the oil-brine mixtures, related corrosion test methods and experimental techniques are critically evaluated. Third, the effects of crude oil on corrosion inhibition are conceivably attributed to four aspects, i.e. the entrainment of water, the wetting by crude oil, the partitioning effect, and the modification of the corrosion product layers. Fourth, the presence of crude oil may consume more corrosion inhibitors; however, the inhibitors can produce additional benefits on corrosion mitigation in oil-brine mixed conditions, such as altering the surface wettability to hydrophobic and enhancing the entrainment of water. Finally, some ideas to reduce pipeline corrosion are proposed and future research viewpoints are discussed.

Keywords: corrosion inhibition; crude oil; emulsion; flow pattern; pipeline corrosion


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About the article

Zi Ming Wang

Zi Ming Wang is a senior engineer at Sinopec Petroleum Engineering Corporation. He obtained his PhD in materials science from the Institute of Metal Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, in Shenyang in 2010. He graduated from Wuhan University of Technology in 2004 with a bachelor’s degree in materials engineering. His research area focuses on corrosion of metallic materials and corrosion protection in extreme environments. Before joining the present company, as a postdoctoral research fellow, he worked for Sinopec Shengli Oilfield, dealing with corrosion problems in CO2-EOR production systems. Currently, he is in charge of several projects regarding corrosion management and corrosion monitoring funded by the Sinopec group and the Shengli oilfield.

Jian Zhang

Jian Zhang is the vice general manager and the chief engineer of Sinopec Petroleum Engineering Corporation. He obtained his PhD in mechanical engineering from China University of Petroleum, in Beijing in 2006. His expertise covers a wide spectrum in oilfield surface engineering, carbon capture, multiphase flow, water/oil separation, water quality control, and so on. He is a part-time professor at China University of Petroleum (East China) and Qingdao University of Science and Technology. He also serves as the senior expert of Sinopec Shengli Oilfield. He holds 40 patents and authors/co-authors more than 40 research papers.

Corresponding author: Zi Ming Wang, Sinopec Petroleum Engineering Corporation, No. 49 Jinan Road, Dongying 257026, P.R. China, e-mail:

Received: 2015-06-08

Accepted: 2015-10-14

Published Online: 2015-12-12

Published in Print: 2016-03-01

Citation Information: Corrosion Reviews, Volume 34, Issue 1-2, Pages 17–40, ISSN (Online) 2191-0316, ISSN (Print) 0334-6005, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/corrrev-2015-0053.

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