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New HTHP fluid loss control agent for oil-based drilling fluid from pharmaceutical waste.

Khodja, Mohamed; Debih, Hadi; Lebtahi, Hamid; Amish, Mohamed Belkasem


Mohamed Khodja

Hadi Debih

Hamid Lebtahi


In oil-based drilling fluid systems (OBM, for Oil-Based Mud) the oil phase is the major source of contamination and hydrocarbon pollution is, by far, the main concern. However, the release and accumulation of mud additives in the environment may be deleterious on grounds of volume and/or concentration. This paper describes a waste valorisation study from an antibiotic large-scale manufacturing for the preparation of a new drilling fluid additive (Fluid-Loss-Control agent: FLC) for OBM. This additive is environment-friendly, biomaterial in nature, and totally biodegradable and thus expected to have no detrimental effects on the surrounding environment and ecosystems. After product washing, heating, grinding, and screening, a cationic surfactant was used to improve fluid stability and filtration properties. Our results show that: According to drilling fluid requirements, the treatment of this pharmaceutical reject yields a product with good properties, i.e. satisfactory as far as thermal stability, filtration characteristics, and rheology property are concerned. The pre-treatment of those products (according to their original state and particle size, as well as the type and concentration of added surfactant) enhances additive quality and shows good compatibility in drilling fluid systems. The substitution of this new product for conventional additives affords good drilling fluid stability and performance under high temperature and high pressure (HTHP) conditions, economic, and environmental solutions to improve the environmental standing of OBMs further.


KHODJA, M., DEBIH, H., LEBTAHI, H. and AMISH, M.B. 2022. New HTHP fluid loss control agent for oil-based drilling fluid from pharmaceutical waste. Cleaner engineering and technology [online], 8, article number 100476. Available from:

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Mar 30, 2022
Online Publication Date Apr 2, 2022
Publication Date Jun 30, 2022
Deposit Date Apr 4, 2022
Publicly Available Date Apr 4, 2022
Journal Cleaner engineering and technology
Electronic ISSN 2666-7908
Publisher Elsevier
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 8
Article Number 100476
Keywords Pharmaceutical waste; Drilling fluid; Oil-based mud; Filtration; Treatment
Public URL


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