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ULTRASONIC IN-SITU WATER-CUT MEASUREMENT USING ULTRASONIC OIL-WATER SEPARATION FOR AFFECTING SOUND SPEED CALIBRATION

An apparatus and method for the separation of an oil-water mixture into its components are described. An acoustic radiation force moves oil droplets to the nodes of an acoustic standing wave generated in a vertical column containing the oil-water mixture. Once the droplets are sufficiently close together, attractive forces become dominant and the droplets may coalesce to form larger droplets, which have greater buoyancy, and separation of the mixture into a layer of oil and a layer of water occurs, not possible by simple gravitational separation. Acoustically-driven oil-water separation may be used for water-cut measurements in oil production wells, since separation of the oil from the water permits accurate sound speed measurements to be made for both the oil and the water, thereby allowing frequent in situ calibrations of the apparatus to determine whether sound speed measurements on the mixture are accurate in the event that one or both of the mixture constituents is changing.
Inventors: 

Dipen N . Sinha

Cristian Pantea

Patent Number: 
US2018088083
Patent Issue Date: 
April 29, 2018
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