MCB 431: Petroleum Microbiology



Learning Outcomes
At the end of the course, students will be able to:
1. identify petroleum biogenesis and chemical composition;
2. discuss upstream, midstream and downstream activities in the petroleum industry in Nigeria;
3. explain management of wastes from activities in the petroleum industry;
4. describe petroleum prospecting and recovery of hydrocarbon fluids; microbial oil recovery
procedures; microbial influenced corrosion of surface and subsurface assets and control;
5. elucidate reservoir souring, Sulphate Reducing Bacteria and Seawater reinjection challenges;
6. explain oil spill countermeasures, chemical surfactants and biosurfactants.

Course Contents
Definition of petroleum, types of petroleum and origin of petroleum. Geological formations (types
of reservoirs). Exploration and production activities (upstream, mid-stream and downstream
activities). Surface assets, subsurface assets, offshore and onshore operations. Drilling wastes,
production wastes, management of these wastes. Sanitary water, hydrotest water, Produced
water, formation water, Injection water, drilling fluids chemical composition, drill cuttings (top
hole and bottom hole). Environmental considerations in the discharge of wastes onshore and
offshore, cutting reinjection technology and thermo desorption units (TDU). Biogenesis of fossil
fuels with emphasis on the role of micro-organisms. Petroleum prospecting; primary recovery.
Secondary recovery and tertiary recovery. Microbial corrosion of pipes and equipment.
Methanogenesis and methanotrophy. Effects of oil spill on microbial activities in aquatic and
terrestrial ecosystems. Biodeterioration and biotransformation of hydrocarbons. Biodegradation
of organics. Factors affecting persistence/recalcitrance of organics. Biodegradability testing,
bioremediation strategies (In-situ and ex-situ techniques, biostimulation and bioaugumentation)
reservoir souring, sulphate reducing bacteria, seawater reinjection challenges. Bacterial
desulfurisation and denitrogenisation of crude oil, oil spill countermeasures, surfactants and
biosurfactants. Emusification and demulsification.