Studies on the Evaporation Regulation Mechanisms of Crude Oil and Petroleum Products
Merv F. Fingas
Spill Science, Edmonton, Canada.
DOI: 10.4236/aces.2012.22029   PDF    HTML     8,250 Downloads   13,890 Views   Citations


Various concepts for oil evaporation prediction are summarized. Models can be divided into those models that use the basis of air-boundary-regulation or those that do not. Experiments were conducted to determine if oil and petroleum evaporation is regulated by the saturation of the air boundary layer. Experiments included the examination of the evaporation rate with and without wind, in which case it was found that evaporation rates were similar for all wind conditions and no-wind conditions. Experiments where the area and mass varied showed that boundary-layer regulation was not governing for petroleum products. Under all experimental and environmental conditions, oils or petroleum products were not found to be boundary-layer regulated. Experiments on the rate of evaporation of pure compounds showed that compounds larger than Decane were not boundary-layer regulated. Many oils and petroleum products contain few compounds smaller than decane, and this explains why their evaporation is not air boundary-layer limited. Comparison of the air saturation levels of various oils and petroleum products shows that the saturation concentration of water, which is strongly air boundary-regulated, is significantly less than that of several petroleum hydrocarbons. Lack of air boundary-layer regulation for oils is shown to be a result of both this higher saturation concentration as well as a low (below boundary-layer value) evaporation rate.

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F. Fingas, M. (2012) Studies on the Evaporation Regulation Mechanisms of Crude Oil and Petroleum Products. Advances in Chemical Engineering and Science, 2, 246-256. doi: 10.4236/aces.2012.22029.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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