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V-TIC Services provides testing for many types of customers – refiners, blenders, traders, tanker companies and more, for their crude oil and petroleum feedstock. The testing provided is through a global hydrocarbons laboratory network staffed with experienced petroleum chemists and equipped with modern instrumentation. The crude oil and petroleum labs test to ASTM, ISO, IP, and other petroleum industry protocols.

In addition to providing the regular crude oil assay testing, hydrocarbon and finished product quality checks, we also offer troubleshooting and contamination identification services. Our experienced team provides the expertise and resources you need to ensure a quality end product.


Saturates, Aromatics, Resins, Asphaltenes

V-TIC Services is proud to present the next level of analysis with SARA.

Identifying and quantifying the main compounds or pseudo-components of crude oil mixture is important for predicting crude oil behavior in different conditions. Due to the complex composition of crude oils, performing the elemental analysis is not possible. Therefore, in place of this analysis, hydrocarbon group type analysis is preferred. One approach to hydrocarbon group type analysis is SARA separation. It separates the crude oil components into four parts based on their solubility and polarity: Saturates, Aromatics, Resins, and Asphaltene. SARA gives information about the main compounds or pseudo-components of the fuel mixture which is important for predicting and analyzing the fuel’s behavior in different conditions. In addition, knowing the chemical composition of the fuel is required to ensure the fuel blending components are compatible and won’t cause sedimentation of asphaltenes and sludging issues.

One of the common and basic techniques for SARA analysis is Thin layer chromatography-flame ionization detection or Iatroscan. Thin layer chromatography-flame ionization detection (TLC-FID) is a unique system that combines the advantages of FID as a universal detector and the separation capability of TLC to make it a powerful analytical separation technique that can be used for a wide range of component analyses. It has the advantage of analyzing compounds with low volatility as compared to conventional Gas Chromatography (GC). Compounds without chromophore can effectively be detected by this equipment without any need for chemical derivatization. It is a simple and flexible analytical setup that can easily be adapted to handle difficult matrices.


Flash studies are commonly conducted in the oil industry to determine the properties of crude oil, including its vapor pressure and composition and how those change when going from pressurized conditions to atmospheric conditions. In North Dakota, flash studies are particularly important because the state is a major producer of crude oil from the Bakken Formation.

The crude oil produced in North Dakota and Montana, like most crude oil, contains volatile compounds which can cause safety and environmental concerns during storage, transportation, and refining. To ensure safe handling of crude oil and to comply with regulatory requirements, it is necessary to measure of the oil’s tendency to evaporate and form vapors.

Flash studies involve heating a sample of crude oil to a specific temperature and then simulating the conditions that crude oil experiences during storage and transportation. Components like Hazardous Air Pollutants (HAPs) and Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) that will emerge when the sample is released from pressure can be determined. This information is important for Air Emissions calculations for purposes such as well registrations for the the North Dakota Department of Environmental Quality (NDDEQ).

In North Dakota, flash studies are essential for ensuring the safe handling and transportation of crude oil from the Bakken Formation. The results of these studies help oil companies and regulators to develop appropriate safety measures and regulations to protect workers, communities, and the environment.



Regulators use the data from flash studies to develop appropriate safety measures and regulations for the handling and transportation of crude oil. The results of flash studies provide critical information about the properties of crude oil, including its vapor pressure, boiling point, and composition, which can impact the safety and environmental risks associated with its production, transportation, and storage.

Here are some ways in which regulators use the data from flash studies:


Based on the results of flash studies, regulators can develop regulations that set limits on the vapor pressure and other properties of crude oil to ensure that it can be safely transported and stored without posing a risk to workers or the environment


Flash study data can be used to develop safety guidelines for the handling and transportation of crude oil, such as guidelines for the use of protective equipment, emergency response procedures, and best practices for storage and transportation


In the event of an accident or spill involving crude oil, regulators can use the data from flash studies to inform emergency response plans and procedures, including the selection of appropriate containment and cleanup methods


Regulators may use flash study data to monitor compliance with regulations and safety guidelines, such as by requiring oil companies to conduct regular flash studies and report the results. This information can be reported to regulatory agencies such as the NDDEQ and EPA

Overall, the data from flash studies plays a critical role in ensuring the safe and responsible production, transportation, and storage of crude oil, and helps regulators to minimize the risks associated with these activities


ASTM D5002Density @ 15°C/API Gravity
ASTM D445Kinematic Viscosity @ 50° C, 40° C , 100° C
ASTM D93Flash Point
UOP 163Hydrogen Sulfide
ASTM D4294Sulphur Content
UOP 163Mercaptan Sulphur
ASTM D5853Pour Point (lower)
ASTM D5853Pour Point (upper)
ASTM D1218Refractive Index @ 70° C
ASTM D323Reid Vapour Pressure @ 100° F
ASTM D3230Salt Content
IP 265Salt Content as NaCl
ASTM D664Total Acid Number
ASTM D5291Total Nitrogen
UOP 46Wax Content prec. at -30° C
ASTM D6560Asphaltene
ASTM D4006Water Content in Crude Oil by Distillation
ASTM D4007Basic Sediment & Water (BS&W)
ASTM D473Sediment by Extraction
ASTM D7900Light Ends methane to nonane
ASTM D7169Simulated Distillation – Boiling Point Distribution Curve
ASTM D86Distillation of petroleum products at atmospheric pressure
ASTM D4929Organic Chlorides in Crude Oil
ASTM D7691Multielement Analysis of Crude Oil
ASTM D5708Vanadium,Iron and Nickel in Crude Oil
ASTM D2892Distillation of Crude Oil – 15 Theoretical Plate Column
ASTM D5236Distillation of Heavy Hydrocarbon Mixtures – Vacuum Potstill Method


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