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Produced Solids Particle Size Measurement Data Analysis: Part 2 (B-FSM018)

Four Fractions of White Silica Sand after Sieve Separation

Continuing from the previous article on data interpretation from Particle Size Distribution (PSD).

 

Key Data to Identify

Identify Top Size

  • Particle size at 98-100% passing (3-6 mm common for produced solids)
  • Used to determine solids plugging potential (i.e. pressure gauge ports)
  • Need to know top size for slurry transport calculations, to ensure all particles are carried by liquid flow

 

Identify Bottom Size and Amount

  • Size at 10% passing – commonly called “fines”
  • A high concentration of fines increases liquid/slurry viscosity, blinds filters, and increases oil-in-water concentration
  • Sometimes a bump in fines shown in PSD indicates agglomeration during analysis – ensure solids are chemically or mechanically de-agglomerated and run PSD again

 

Identify Average Size

  • Most common number quoted and used for analysis
  • However, does single number accurately represent all data?

 

Top/Bottom/Average Sizes – Illustration

The key data from a particle size distribution on produced sand is illustrated on the following graph.

What Does “Mean Size” Mean?

  • Mean or Average Size
  • Most common number quoted and used for analysis
  • Does single number accurately represent all data?
  • Do you pick the peak number or calculate weighted average?
  • Peak value is “Mode” – commonly (incorrectly) picked as mean
  • Surface Mean (Sauter Mean) = D(3,2)
  • Volume Mean (de Brouckere Mean) = D(4,3) – recommended value to use

 

These values are illustrated on the following graph.

We will start the discussion of chemical and mineralogical properties of produced sand in the next article.

 

References:

  1. ISO 9276-1:1998. Representation of results of particle size analysis – Part 1: Graphical Representation.
  2. ISO 9276-2:2014. Representation of results of particle size analysis – Part 2: Calculation of average particle sizes/diameters and moments from particle size distributions.
 
 
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