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Adango Miadonye

Adango Miadonye

Cape Breton University, Canada

Title: Application of cavitation process in bitumen recovery from oilsands

Biography

Biography: Adango Miadonye

Abstract

The interest in oilsands development has been unprecedented in recent times, mainly due to the progressive decline in
conventional oil reserves. Oilsands deposit (known as tarsands) in Alberta, Canada, is approximately 11% of the world’s
total current crude oil reserve. The oilsand is a composition of bitumen, water and sand grains with traces amount of metals. The current methods for bitumen extraction from oilsands which include Mining, Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage, Cyclic Steam Stimulation and Electromagnetic heating are each characterized by several environmental issues such as massive greenhouse gas emissions, large volumes of water consumption and low energy efficiency. The concept of cavitation has been used in various other applications such as mineral recovery from ores, hydrocarbon cracking and so on, but there is limited research data on its application in bitumen recovery processes from oilsands. Cavitation occurs in a moving liquid by sending highfrequency waves through the liquid, which induces vapor bubble nucleation and when imploded releases immense energy. This study showed that due to the enormous energy released during cavitation, bitumen is more readily separated from the solid particles in the oilsands slurry mix. Furthermore, the viscosity of the oilsands slurry, particle size distribution and temperature have the significant effect on oil recovery by cavitation. The average bitumen recovery after cavitation periods of 15, 30, 45 and 60 minutes were 0.4g, 1.8g, 1.9g, 2.1g and 0.6g, 3.9g, 4.3g, 4.4g with ±5% error margin for low and high-grade oilsands samples respectively, thus, oil recovery by cavitation is feasible.