Oil weathering and dispersant testing

Oil weathering and dispersant testing of crude oil

Ricardo Energy & Environment has worked with the oil industry for many years and our oil testing services are called upon by organisations around the globe to support and advise on emergency response processes.

Our support provides our clients with the confidence that they have minimised their risks and that any incident involving a spill of crude oil at sea will be resolved as quickly and efficiently as possible. Our services include:

  • Crude oil weathering: Ricardo Energy & Environment has undertaken hundreds of studies on the weathering and emulsification behaviour of numerous types of crude oil. The work involves measuring changes in the properties of crude oil in simulated weathering experiments. This enables us to provide our clients with the critical input parameters necessary for use in popular oil-spill behaviour models such as the Oil Spill Information System (OSIS). Requests for input parameters for other models such as the Oil Spill Contingency and Response (OSCAR) model can also be investigated.
  • Dispersant testing and approval. Ricardo Energy & Environment has extensive dispersant testing experience in field and laboratory environments. We carry out dispersant testing on crude oil and emulsions using the rotating flask method (outlined in appendix A of the WSL LR448 report). We test the effectiveness of dispersants that are approved for use in British waters and those that can be used in international waters.
  • Dispersant stockpile testing. Ricardo Energy & Environment can support you through the testing of the efficacy of stockpiled dispersants on a regular basis. Our clients send samples of the stockpiled dispersant to us and we test them using the LR 448 method.

Stuart Ritchie

Oil Testing Knowledge Leader

+44 (0) 1235 861343

oils@ricardo.com Find out more

Contact us

Relevant resources

Oil weathering and dispersant testing capability statement


Chemical Risk overview brochure

Sustainable business