New Technology Helps Iran Produce Special Oils

New Technology Helps Iran Produce Special Oils
New Technology Helps Iran Produce Special Oils

Iran now has access to new technology to produce specific crude oils in line with customers' orders.

The technology allows for production of a special crude that combines light and heavy oil in proportions defined by refineries and customers, Mehr news agency reported.

Having acquired the technology to extract and process oil and gas from unconventional resources, the US has started dispatching its gas condensate consignments to Japan and South Korea, and by imposing sanctions on countries like Iran and Russia, it is seeking to control the market for its own oil and gas products.

Despite this, Iran has an advantage in global markets due to its range of petroleum products. Oil from the Hengam oil and gas field is the lightest in the world, while the oil from other fields in the Persian Gulf, such as Soroush, Nowruz, and Forouzan, are among the heavy brands. The development of new phases in the South Pars field gives Iran substantial capacity to produce gas condensate, a product which can be combined with heavy -and even extra heavy- crude oil.

Explaining the new technology, Seyed Pirouz Mousavi, managing director of Iranian Oil Terminals Company (IOTC), said for the first time the technology to combine heavy and light crude oil was used at Iranian oil terminals, and specifically at Kharg terminal. "By employing this technology Iran's basket of oil products will be diversified further," Mousavi said.

With this project, which allows the refineries to acquire the combined oil in accordance with customer needs, Iran can have a bigger share of the market.

  Bigger Share

Noting that there are currently plenty of customers for Iran's combined oil, Mousavi said the new technology will not only increase exports, but also give Iran an upper hand in negotiations and marketing.  

According to the Oil & Gas Journal, as of January 2014, Iran has an estimated 157 billion barrels of proved crude oil reserves, representing nearly 10% of the world's crude oil reserves and 13% of reserves held by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC).  Iran's crude oil generally has a medium sulfur content, and is in the 28° to 36° API gravity range. Two crude streams, Iran Heavy and Iran Light, account for more than 80% of the country's crude oil production capacity. Other crude streams include Froozan, Soroush/Norouz, Doroud, Sirri, and the Lavan Blend.

The Iran Heavy crude stream accounts for approximately 45% of the country's total crude oil production. The Iran Light crude stream is the other key grade and is sourced from several onshore fields in the Khuzestan region. However, two-thirds of this grade comes from three fields: Ahwaz-Asmari, Karani, and Agha Jari.