The effect of formate brines on the emulsification of ionic, non-ionic, and enzymatic surfactants

Linda Tatiana Lezama Viveros, Roozbeh Rafati* (Corresponding Author), Amin Sharifi Haddad

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Environmental concerns on contamination of subsurface porous media by toxic chemicals have motivated the petroleum industry to replace them with environmentally sustainable (green) and biodegradable alternatives. Green surfactants have emerged such as sugar, enzymatic, and microbial based surfactants. However, their emulsification with different oils and salinity
conditions is unknown. In this study, different oil and brine systems are tested to measure interfacial properties, rheology and emulsification of Coco Glucoside (CG), a sugar-derived surfactant; and Greenzyme (GZ), an enzymatic-environmentally friendly surfactant. Emulsification with light and medium crude oil in the presence of sodium chloride and sodium formate brines gave similar results with 10-20 μm average droplet size. However, medium heavy crude oil with potassium formate produced 98 vol% emulsion with 3-6 μm average
droplet size. Most of the emulsions demonstrated a shear thinning behaviour apart from emulsions resulting from Coco Glucoside and medium-heavy crude oil in which a clear Newtonian behaviour was observed.
Original languageEnglish
Article number118016
Number of pages24
JournalChemical Engineering Science
Early online date16 Sep 2022
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2022


  • Emulsification
  • Alpha Olefin Sulfonate
  • Coco Glucoside
  • Critical Micelle Concentration
  • Gibbs Energy
  • Formate Brine


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