Photo: Guri Aspenes

UFO at sunset?

No, this is just a little drop of water from a project being carried out by SINTEF’s Bergen office, a project that could be of great financial significance for oil companies. The project addresses hydrates – ice-like crystals that sometimes form in pipelines carrying oil or gas from subsea fields.

Unless we take countermeasures, which are expensive, hydrates may block the pipeline. Now there is hope for a less expensive form of protection.

At the core of the project are experiments that demonstrate how water droplets behave on different surfaces when they are suspended in various types of oil.