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Aqua Technologies of Wyoming


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ET-1 Activated Clay
ET-1 Operating Information


ET-1 Operating Information


Water Pollution Content and ET-1

Oil water pollution phase separation should be as efficient as possible. It is self-evident that operating economics are improved when crude oil, condensate, and other valuable hydrocarbons are captured for sale. Minimized hydrocarbon content also reduces the cost of pollution adsorbent media such as organoclay. The origin of the hydrocarbon contamination must also be determined. This is usually not an issue in produced water treatment, but organoclay apparently does not adsorb synthetic lubricants found in some motor oils and low toxicity drilling muds. The presence of this pollution may contraindicate the use of organoclay for other applications.

Container Design

A typical treatment package will consist of 3 adsorbent containers: a primary adsorption vessel containing ET-1 organoclay, a redundant vessel containing a 100% quantity of organoclay, and a polishing container of activated carbon. The final polishing step might be eliminated if BTEX or other soluble organics are not an area of concern. The container volume and shape are determined by two criteria:

1.Fluid residence time of three minutes per vessel.
2.Superficial flow rate of approximately 1.6-2.0 gallons per minute per square ft. (gpm/sq. ft).

The recommended superficial flow rate is conservative and specific installations may permit a substantially higher flow rate. Residence time is based on an intragranular porosity of 34-39%. New installations should be designed to take advantage of upflow adsorption, but existing containers designed for GAC will probably work for ET-1 without modification.

Solids Control

Prior to treatment, suspended solids should be removed as organoclay is not intended to be used as filtration medium. Iron sulfide poses an additional concern because it tends to be oil-wet and can contribute to elevated oil measurements in discharges. It can also mimic an oil sheen or stain on the shoreline and lead to an erroneous conclusion that quality requirements are not being met. In our experience, organoclay is unable to strip oil from iron sulfide.

Chemical Treatment Program

Operators who select organoclays for treatment should maintain a dialogue with the supplier of oil treating chemicals. It is very difficult for organoclays to attack an emulsion that has been stabilized in surfactant micelles. Simple dispersions caused by the addition of energy (at perforations, valves or chokes) are readily broken even when the dispersion has been stabilized by fines such as clays, paraffin, or asphaltines. Compatibility with treatment chemicals should be thoroughly investigated. For example, sodium hypochlorite (bleach) will degrade the ET-1 polymer if used as a biocide in high concentrations.

Media Preparation

Media must be flushed of fines and wetted for approximately 24 hours prior to use. This will ensure that the interlamellar spaces within the organoclay are hydrated and ready to adsorb contamination.


Temperature should be kept below 100F because the polymer modifier begins to melt at a slightly higher temperature. Inspection of the media removed from case studies showed that the granular media had begun to adhere together as a result of temperatures in excess of 130F.



Casper, Wyoming

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