Reservoir Reservoir Engineering Engineering

Enhanced Enhanced Oil Oil Recovery Recovery
Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP December 2013
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Outline
Oil Recovery Mechanisms
Miscible Displacement
Chemical Flooding
Thermal Flooding
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
2
Screening Criteria for EOR Processes
Introduction
The initial production of hydrocarbons from an
underground reservoir is accomplished by the use
of natural reservoir energy. This type of
production is termed “Primary Production”.
When the natural reservoir energy has been
depleted, it becomes necessary to augment the
natural energy with an external source. This is
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
natural energy with an external source. This is
usually accomplished by the injection of fluids,
either a natural gas or water.
The use of this injection scheme is called a
“Secondary Recovery” operation. Two techniques
are commonly used:
Waterflooding
Gasflooding
3
Introduction
EOR, usually implies oil recovery beyond the
primary (oil produced by reservoir forces) and the
secondary (usually, waterflooding) stages.
In the case of « conventional » or light oils (API (API
gravity gravity over over 30 30° °) ), EOR refers to oil recovery
following primary and secondary stages.
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
following primary and secondary stages.
For heavy (API (API gravity gravity 10 10 to to 20 20° ° API) API), viscous
oils, EOR signifies oil recovery beyond primary
methods.
In the case of extremely heavy and viscous oils
(< (< 10 10° ° API) API), where primary recovery is nil, EOR
designates any applicable recovery method.
4
Primary Recovery Drive
Mechanisms
During primary recovery the natural energy of the
reservoir is used to transport hydrocarbons
towards and out of the production wells.
There are several different energy sources, and
each gives rise to a drive mechanism.
There are five important drive mechanisms (or
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
There are five important drive mechanisms (or
combinations). These are:
Solution gas drive
Gas cap drive
Water drive
Gravity drainage
Combination or mixed drive
5
Solution-Gas Drive
Reservoir Type
Completely surrounded
by impermeable barriers
Main source(s) of
reservoir energy
Liberation and
Oil
Oil producing wells
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
Liberation and
expansion of dissolved
(solution) gas
Expansion of reservoir
rock, interstitial
(original) water, and oil
are always present but
usually minor sources of
reservoir energy for oil
reservoirs.
6
A. Original Conditions
B. 50% Depleted
Oil producing wells
Solution-Gas Drive
Reservoir behavior characteristics
Reservoir rock expansion and liquid expansion (oil
and original water) are main sources of reservoir
energy in oil reservoirs above the bubble point
pressure of oil (p
b
).
There is no free gas (original gas cap) present
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
There is no free gas (original gas cap) present
above the bubble point pressure.
Pressure reduction below bubble point pressure of
oil causes evolution and expansion of dissolved
(solution) gas.
Solution-gas drive occurs in oil reservoirs at
pressures below the bubble point pressure of oil
(p<p
b
).
7
Solution Gas Drive
Liberated dissolved gas may segregate from oil phase
under gravity forces and form a secondary gas cap.
Formation of secondary gas cap is controlled by
gravitational segregation of gas and oil.
Wellbore
Liberated solution gas
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8
Liberated solution gas
Secondary gas cap
Solution-Gas Drive
Typical Production Characteristics
G
a
s
/
o
i
l

r
a
t
i
o
,

S
C
F
/
S
T
B
Gas/oil
ratio
O
i
l

p
r
o
d
u
c
t
i
o
n

r
a
t
e
,

S
T
B
/
D
800
600
400
300
400
300
P
r
e
s
s
u
r
e
,

p
s
i
a
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
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G
a
s
/
o
i
l

r
a
t
i
o
,

S
C
F
/
S
T
B
Reservoir
pressure
Oil production rate
Time, years
O
i
l

p
r
o
d
u
c
t
i
o
n

r
a
t
e
,

S
T
B
/
D
400
200
0
200
100
0
200
100
0
P
r
e
s
s
u
r
e
,

p
s
i
a
Gas-Cap Drive
Reservoir Type
Free gas phase exists as
an original gas cap above
oil zone
Pure gas-cap drive
reservoir has no aquifer
Oil producing well
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
reservoir has no aquifer
Main source(s) of
reservoir energy
Expansion of gas cap
Liberation and expansion
of solution gas in the oil
zone
10
Cross Section
Oil
zone
Oil
zone
Gas cap
Gas Cap Drive
Reservoir behavior characteristics
As pressure declines, the gas cap expands
downward and lowers gas/oil contact.
Expanding gas cap maintains original pressure at a
higher level than in a reservoir without an original
gas cap (solution-gas drive oil reservoirs).
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
gas cap (solution-gas drive oil reservoirs).
Higher reservoir pressure keeps dissolved gas in
solution longer; oil with more dissolved gas is less
viscous and moves more easily toward production
wells.
Expanding gas cap displaces oil downstructure and
effectively sweeps the portion of the reservoir
occupied previously by oil.
GOR rise dramatically in wells overtaken by
expanding gas cap.
11
Gas-Cap Drive
Typical Production Characteristics
1300
1200
1100
900
P
r
e
s
s
u
r
e
,

p
s
i
a
G
a
s
/
o
i
l

r
a
t
i
o
,

s
c
f
/
S
T
B
800
Reservoir pressure
1000
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12
900
0
O
i
l

p
r
o
d
u
c
t
i
o
n

r
a
t
e
,
Time, years
G
a
s
/
o
i
l

r
a
t
i
o
,

s
c
f
/
S
T
B
2
1
800
600
400
200
0
Gas/oil ratio
Oil
M
S
T
B
/
D
Water Drive
Reservoir type
Oil zone in
communication with
aquifer
Pure water drive
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
Pure water drive
reservoir has no
original gas cap
Main source(s) of
reservoir energy
Influx of aquifer
water
13
Water Drive Reservoirs
Two types
Edge water drive
Bottom water
drive
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
14
Water Drive
Reservoir behavior characteristics
As reservoir pressure declines, aquifer water
moves into pore space vacated by oil.
Pressure decline is relatively slow (stronger
water drive results in more significant pressure
maintenance).
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
maintenance).
Gas/oil ratio is relatively low and stable.
Majority of producing wells eventually
experience water breakthrough; water
production increases.
As wells produce water, oil production rate
declines. Many production wells eventually load
up with water and cannot be produced further.
15
Water Drive Reservoirs
Typical Production Characteristics
2
1
1900
2000
2100
2200
2300
40
G
a
s
/
o
i
l

r
a
t
i
o
,

M
S
C
F
/
S
T
B
W
a
t
e
r

c
u
t
,

%
P
r
e
s
s
u
r
e
,

p
s
i
a
Gas/oil ratio
Reservoir pressure
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Time, years
0
1
0
20
40
60
80
100
1900
40
30
20
10
0
G
a
s
/
o
i
l

r
a
t
i
o
,

M
S
C
F
/
S
T
B
W
a
t
e
r

c
u
t
,

%
O
i
l

p
r
o
d
u
c
t
i
o
n

r
a
t
e
,
P
r
e
s
s
u
r
e
,

p
s
i
a
Oil
Water
M
S
T
B
/
D
Gravity Drainage
The density differences between oil and gas and water
result in their natural segregation in the reservoir. This
process can be used as a drive mechanism, but is
relatively weak, and in practice is only used in
combination with other drive mechanisms.
The best conditions for gravity drainage are:
Thick oil zones.
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
High vertical permeabilities.
The rate of production engendered by gravity drainage
is very low compared with the other drive mechanisms
examined so far.
However, it is extremely efficient over long periods and
can give rise to extremely high recoveries (50-70% OOIP).
Consequently, it is often used in addition to the other
drive mechanisms.
17
Gravity Drainage
Reservoir type
Gravity drainage may occur in any type of
reservoir.
Gravity drainage is particularly important in
solution-gas and gas-cap drive oil reservoirs
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Gravity Drainage
Main Sources of reservoir
energy
Gravitational forces
Gravitational segregation
is tendency of fluids in
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
is tendency of fluids in
reservoir to segregate,
under inference of
gravity, to position in
reservoir based on fluids'
density (gas to move
above oil, water below
oil).
19
Gravity Drainage
Reservoir behavior characteristics
Gravitational segregation can improve recovery
efficiency substantially when it has time to act.
In solution-gas drive reservoirs, liberated solution
gas may segregate from oil to form a secondary gas
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
gas may segregate from oil to form a secondary gas
cap.
In gas-cap drive reservoirs, oil in gas-invaded
region drains down to rejoin oil column, reducing
residual oil saturation (and thus improving recovery
efficiency).
Recovery efficiency for a gravity-drainage reservoir
may approach that of better water-drive reservoirs.
20
Combination Drive
Rare for reservoirs to fit into the
simple pure drive classification
Many have a combination of
drives during production period.
A large aquifer and a large gas
cap can occur in a reservoir
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
cap can occur in a reservoir
simultaneously.
Dominant drive mechanism
depends on the “strength" of
each of the source(s) of
reservoir energy: size of original
gas cap, "strength" of aquifer
(size and permeability), and
degree of pressure decline
21
Recommendations for
perforations
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
22
Average Recovery Factors

Drive Mechanism
Average Oil Recovery
Factors,
% of OOIP
Range Average
Solution-gas drive 5 - 30 15
Gas-cap drive 15 - 50 30
Water drive 30 - 60 40
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
Ultimate oil and gas recoveries vary depending on the
drive mechanism.
For oil; water drive is most effective. Typical primary
recoveries are in the 25-40% range (maximum 75%).
23
Water drive 30 - 60 40
Gravity-drainage
drive
16 - 85 50

Summary
Oil reservoir drive mechanisms
Solution-gas drive
Gas-cap drive
Water drive
Combination drive
Gravity-drainage drive
Major sources of reservoir energy
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
Major sources of reservoir energy
Liberation, expansion of solution gas
Influx of aquifer water
Expansion of reservoir rock
Expansion of original reservoir fluids
Free gas
Interstitial water
Oil,
Gravitational forces
24
Exercise
Given oil reservoir producing characteristics as shown in the figures,
indicate which oil reservoir drive mechanism is likely.
Pressure trend
P
r
e
s
s
u
r
e
Time
Gas/oil ratio trend
Time
Reservoir 1
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P
r
e
s
s
u
r
e
Time
P
r
e
s
s
u
r
e
Time
Time
Time
Reservoir 3
Reservoir 2
Secondary Recovery
Secondary recovery is the
result of human
intervention in the
reservoir to improve
recovery when the natural
drives have diminished to
unreasonably low
efficiencies.
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
efficiencies.
Two techniques are
commonly used:
Waterflooding
Gasflooding
26
Waterflooding
Waterflooding is the use of water
injection to increase the production
from oil reservoirs.
Goal of Waterflooding
Increase the amount of oil recovered
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
Increase the amount of oil recovered
from the reservoir by
Maintaining reservoir pressure
Displacing (sweeping) oil with
water
27
Pressure Maintenance
Water injected into the reservoir or into the aquifer
downdip of the reservoir increases reservoir energy
by replacing fluids withdrawn in primary recovery
and repressurizing the system.
Gas
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28
Water treatment
plant
Water
injection
OWC
Sealing
fault
Oil
Production
well
Gas Phase Effects
Reduction in reservoir pressure can cause
Gas-cap expansion
Secondary gas cap creation
Gas saturation creation in pore spaces
Water injection can prevent or reverse these
effects.
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
effects.
These effects can be prevented if water injection is
started before reservoir pressure drops below the
bubble point.
Below the bubble point, repressurization of the
reservoir by water injection can partially– and
sometimes totally–drive the gas back into solution
with the oil.
29
Solution-gas drive reservoirs are some of the best
candidates for waterflooding.
Gas-cap drives benefit from waterflooding but require
careful attention to prevent
water injection losses into the gas cap
oil being pushed up into the gas cap.
Note: Some projects intentionally inject water into
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
Note: Some projects intentionally inject water into
the gas cap to prevent oil migration into the gas cap.
A weak water drive that cannot maintain reservoir
pressure can be supplemented by water injection.
Gravity drainage reservoirs are usually steeply
dipping, causing areally small reservoirs which make
injector placement difficult.
Strong water drive reservoirs generally do not need
any water injection.
30
G
a
s
/
o
i
l

r
a
t
i
o
GOR
Too depleted for
WF success
p
i
G
a
s

s
a
t
u
r
a
t
i
o
n
Reservoir Performance
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
G
a
s
/
o
i
l

r
a
t
i
o
P
r
e
s
s
u
r
e
Cumulative oil production
GOR
p
b
R
si
G
a
s

s
a
t
u
r
a
t
i
o
n
Pressure
Gas
saturation
31
Gasflooding
This method is similar to waterflooding in principal,
and is used to maintain gas cap pressure even if oil
displacement is not required.
When gas is used as the pressure maintenance
agent, it is usually injected into a zone of free gas
(i.e., a gas cap) to maximize recovery by gravity
drainage.
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
drainage.
The injected gas is usually natural gas produced
from the reservoir in question. This, of course,
defers the sale of that gas until the secondary
operation is completed and the gas can be
recovered by depletion. Other gases, such as N
2
,
can be injected to maintain reservoir pressure. This
allows the natural gas to be sold as it is produced.
32
Gasflooding
The first problem encountered with the gas injection
recovery method is that although the gas was injected as
a wall, it is very light.
Consequently, as it travels through the formation, it
migrates to the upper areas of the reservoir, travels over
the heavier liquids (including the crude oil), and leaves
very large pockets of oil behind.
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
The second problem encountered is that being lighter
than oil, the gas will have a tendency to finger—that is,
break into smaller streams—and channel to the recovery
well, bypassing much of the oil and reducing the sweep
efficiency.
The third problem is that it is difficult for the injected
gas to recombine with the oil remaining in the formation.
It can even make the remaining oil heavier and harder to
move.
33
Enhanced Oil Recovery
Enhanced oil recovery processes can be
classified into Three categories:
Miscible flooding processes
Chemical flooding processes
Thermal flooding processes
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
Thermal flooding processes
34
Currently Used EOR Processes
Miscible methods- including: hydrocarbon
gas, CO
2
, nitrogen, flue gas
Chemical methods- polymer, surfactant,
caustic, and micellar/polymer flooding.
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Thermal methods- steam stimulation,
steamflooding, and in-situ combustion
35
EOR Target
The target of EOR varies considerably for the
different types of hydrocarbons.
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36
Incremental Oil
A universal technical measure of the success
of an EOR project is the amount of
incremental oil recovered.
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Volumetric Displacement Efficiency
Oil Recovery
o p
p D A i
S V
N E E E
B
=
Oil Recovery Equation
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Microscopic Displacement Efficiency
p D A i
o
N E E E
B
=
38
Overall Recovery Efficiency
The overall recovery efficiency of any oil recovery
including EOR process can be expressed as follows:
The overall recovery efficiency E of any fluid
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
The overall recovery efficiency E of any fluid
displacement process is given by the product of the
macroscopic, or volumetric, displacement efficiency
E
v
and the microscopic displacement efficiency E
D
:
39
=
D V
E E E
The macroscopic displacement
efficiency
The macroscopic displacement efficiency is a
measure of how well the displacing fluid has come in
contact with the oil-bearing parts of the reservoir.
The macroscopic displacement efficiency is made up
of two other terms, the areal, E
A
, and vertical, E
i
,
sweep efficiencies:
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
sweep efficiencies:
40
i A V
E E E =
The areal sweep efficiency E
A
The The areal areal sweep sweep efficiency efficiency E E
A A
is the fractional area of
the pattern that is swept by the displacing fluid.
The major factors determining areal sweep are:
Fluid mobilities
Pattern type
Areal heterogeneity
Producer
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
Areal heterogeneity
Total volume of fluid injected
41
E
A
Invaded
area
Producer
Injector
The vertical Sweep Efficiency E
i
The The vertical vertical sweep sweep efficiency efficiency E E
ii
is the fraction of
the vertical section of the pay zone that is
contacted by injected fluids.
The vertical sweep efficiency is primarily a
function of:
Vertical heterogeneity
Degree of gravity segregation
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Degree of gravity segregation
Fluid mobilities
Total volume injection
42
INJECTION PRODUCTION
E
i
=
The microscopic displacement
efficiency
The microscopic displacement efficiency E
D
is a
measure of how well the displacing fluid mobilizes
the residual oil once the fluid has come in contact
with the oil.
Or the fraction of movable oil that has been displaced
from the swept zone
Because there is always some residual oil left behind
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
Because there is always some residual oil left behind
an EOR process, E
D
will always be less than 1.0.
43
The displacement efficiency E
D
The displacement efficiency is expressed as:
oi or
D
oi
S S
E
S

=
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
44
Where
S
oi
= initial oil saturation at start of flood
S
or
= residual oil saturation.
Factors Controlling Flood
Efficiency
IFT
Wettability
Microscopic
efficiency
Macroscopic
efficiency
Heterogeneities
Mobility ratio
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
Relative permeability
Capillary pressure
45
Well pattern
Interfacial Tension (IFT)
Definition
Force needed to separate 2 fluids over a given length :
force/length.
Or resulting attraction forces in between molecules at
the interface in between 2 fluids.
Nomenclature
Interfacial tension in between 2 liquids.
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
surface tension in between 1 fluid & air.
Units
S.I ==> N/m
CGS ==> Dynes/cm (1 Dyne/cm = 1 mN/m= 10
-3
N/m)
Examples
Oil / water : 15 to 40 dyn/cm
Oil / gas : 0 à 15 dyn/cm
Water / gas : 35 à 60 dyn/cm
46
Wettability
Wettability is defined in terms of the interaction
of two immiscible phases, such as oil and water,
and a solid surface, such as that of the pores of
a reservoir rock.
Tendency of one fluid to spread on or adhere to a
solid surface in the presence of other immiscible
fluids.
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fluids.
Reservoir rocks (sandstone, limestone, dolomite,
etc.) are the solid surfaces.
Oil, water, and/or gas are the fluids.
In petroleum reservoir, either water or oil is wetting
phase; gas is always non-wetting phase.
47
Wettability
Contact angle (θ) is one way to measure the
wettability of solid.
θ <90º is preferentially water-wet.
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where σ
os
= the IFT between the oil and solid
phases, σ
ws
= the IFT between the water and solid
phases, and σ
ow
= the IFT between the oil and
water phases.
48
Wettability Classification
Wettability
Strongly oil- or water-wetting
Neutral wettability – no preferential
wettability to either water or oil in the pores
Fractional wettability
reservoir that has local areas that are
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
reservoir that has local areas that are
strongly oil-wet, whereas most of the
reservoir is strongly water-wet
Mixed wettability
smaller pores area water-wet are filled with
water, whereas larger pores are oil-wet and
filled with oil
49
Wettability
Until the late seventies all reservoirs were
considered to be water-wet.
In the 80’s wettability determination
measurements demonstrate that oil-wet
reservoirs do exist and are not just
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
reservoirs do exist and are not just
exceptions.
Currently about 2/3 of reservoirs are
considered to be mixed-wet or even strongly
oil-wet.
50
Capillary Pressure - Definition -
The pressure difference existing across the
interface separating two immiscible fluids in
capillaries (e.g. porous media).
Calculated as:
P
c
= p
nwt
- p
wt
Where:
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51
P
c
= capillary pressure
P
nwt
= pressure in nonwetting phase
p
wt
= pressure in wetting phase
Gas/liquid: liquid is the wetting
phase:
P
cog
=P
g
-P
o
(oil/gas)
P
cwg
=P
g
-P
w
(water/gas)
Capillary Pressure
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52
Relative Permeabilities
When two or more fluid phases are present, the
saturation of one phase affects the permeability of
the other(s), and relative permeabilities have to be
considered.
Relative permeability is the ratio of the effective
permeability, when more than one fluid is present,
to the absolute permeability.
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
to the absolute permeability.
Effective permeability is the measured permeability
of a porous medium to one fluid when another is
present.
The effective permeability depends on the relative
proportion of the two fluids present, or fluid
saturation. Therefore, relative permeability is also a
function of fluid saturation.
53
Example of Absolute Permeability
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54
Example of Effective Permeability
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55
K
r
-Example Oil/Water
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56
Relative Permeabilities
Relative permeabilities are increasing functions
of the fluid saturation
For a given porous medium and fluid, relative
permeabilities vary depending on the way
saturations change:
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
saturations change:
Drainage
Imbibition
57
Drainage–Imbibition: Definitions
Drainage Mode : the non-
wetting fluid displaces the
wetting fluid
Imbibition Mode: the wetting
fluid displaces the non-
wetting fluid
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58
wetting fluid
By convention in the case
oil/water:
Drainage: decrease of water
saturation
Imbibition: increase of water
saturation
Drainage–Imbibition
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59
Implications of Wettability on K
r
Wettability affects the shape of the relative permeability
curves.
Oil moves easier in water-wet rocks than oil-wet rocks.
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60
Trapping of oil at the pore scale
Trapping of oil in a porous medium depends on
the pore structure of the porous medium,
fluid/rock interactions related to wettability and
fluid/fluid interactions reflected in IFT.
There are basically two mechanisms at pore
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
There are basically two mechanisms at pore
scale by which residual oil is trapped in oil
reservoirs, bypassing and snap-off of oil.
61
Bypassing
Oil Trapping in
thick pores
Oil Trapping in
thin pores
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62
Snap-off
The second mechanism, snap-off, which is more
dominant in water-wet systems, is associated with
the flow of wetting phase, which is water in water-
wet case, through films.
Water thus (at an appropriate capillary pressure)
occupy the space by swelling around the oil and
trapped the oil in the pore by detaching the oil
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trapped the oil in the pore by detaching the oil
droplet from the bulk oil.
63
Snap-off
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64
Snap-off Aspect Ratio
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65
Capillary Number N
ca
The presence of capillary forces in porous
media results in poor displacement
efficiency of oil by water.
The displacement of residual oil is related to
the competetion between viscous and
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
the competetion between viscous and
capillary forces, usually expressed by
Capillary Number.
66
σ
µν
=
ca
N
Where
µ = Viscosity
ν νν ν = Darcy Velocity
σ = Interfacial Tension
Capillary Number N
ca
The N
c
is only around 10
-5
for a typical waterflood.
The N
c
must be increased by a few orders-of-
magnitude to mobilize significant trapped oil.
It is difficult to mobilize the oil if the reservoir rock is
low permeability and thus the pores are smaller size
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
low permeability and thus the pores are smaller size
(increases capillary trapping of the residual oil).
The most practical means to reach the required large
Capillary Numbers in the oil field is to reduce the
interfacial tension, IFT, between the injected
aqueous and residual oil droplets to ultra-low values
(typical target of 0.001 dyne/cm), as compared to
the water/oil IFT values of 20 – 50 dyne/cm.
67
Capillary Number Correlation
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68
Relationship Between Capillary
Number & Oil Recovery
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69
Macroscopic Displacement
Efficiency
Factors that affect the macroscopic displacement
efficiency are the following:
Heterogeneities and anisotropy,
The mobility of the displacing fluids compared
with the mobility of the displaced fluids,
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
with the mobility of the displaced fluids,
The physical arrangement of injection and
production wells,
And the type of rock matrix in which the oil
exists.
70
Heterogeneities and anisotropy
The movement of fluids through the reservoir will
not be uniform if there are large variations in such
properties as porosity, permeability, and clay
content.
Limestone formations generally have wide
fluctuations in porosity and permeability. Also,
many formations have a system of micro-fractures
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many formations have a system of micro-fractures
or large macro-fractures.
Any time a fracture occurs in a reservoir, fluids will
be inclined to travel through the fracture because of
the high permeability of the fracture. This may lead
to substantial bypassing of residual oil.
The bypassing of residual oil by injected fluids is a
major reason for the failure of many pilot EOR
projects.
71
Mobility
Water Mobility
It is the ratio of effective permeability of
rock to water, in the oil bank zone of the
reservoir and the water viscosity
w
w
k
µ
= λ
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Oil Mobility
It is the ratio of effective permeability of
rock to oil, in oil bank zone of the reservoir
and the oil viscosity
72
w
w
µ
= λ
o
o
o
k
µ
= λ
Mobility Ratio Definition
Displacin Mobilityof Phase
Mobility Ratio, M
M Disp ob la ilit ced yof P
g
hase
=
w w
w/o
o o
Water Mobility k /
Mobility Ratio, M
Oil Mobility k /
µ
= =
µ
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Dividing by the absolute permeability, the water-
oil mobility ratio
73
o o
Oil Mobility k / µ
rw w
ro o
k /
Mobility Ratio, M
k /
µ
=
µ
Mobility Ratio
when the M>1, since µ
w
< µ
o
, water flows at a
higher velocity and
breaks through into
producing wells
prematurely.
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prematurely.
The mobility ratio in
this case is deemed to
be unfavorable.
74
Impact of Mobility Ratio on
Sweep Efficiency
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75
E.G. : Five Spot Pattern
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76
The arrangement of injection and
production wells
The arrangement of injection and production wells
depends primarily on the geology of the formation
and the size (areal extent) of the reservoir.
When an operator is considering an EOR project for
a given reservoir, he or she will have the option of
using the existing well arrangement or drilling new
wells in different locations.
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
wells in different locations.
If the operator opts to use the existing well
arrangement, there may be a need to consider
converting production wells to injection wells or
vice versa.
This will require analysis of tubing and other factors
to determine whether the existing equipment can
withstand the properties of the chemicals or
thermal energy to be injected.
77
An operator should also recognize that when a
production well is converted to an injection well, the
production capacity of the reservoir has been reduced.
Often this decision can lead to major cost items in the
overall project and should involve a great deal of
consideration.
Knowledge of any directional permeability effects and
other heterogeneities can aid in the consideration of
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
other heterogeneities can aid in the consideration of
well arrangements.
The presence of faults, fractures, and high-
permeability streaks could dictate the shutting in of a
well near one of these heterogeneities. Directional
permeability trends could lead to poor sweep
efficiency in a developed pattern and might suggest
that the pattern be altered in one direction or that a
different pattern be used.
78
Flood Pattern
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79
Pattern Orientation
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80
Unfavorable
orientation
Favorable
orientation
Permeability
or
fracture
orientation
Type of rock matrix
Sandstone formations are characterized by more
uniform pore geometry than that of limestones.
Limestones have large holes (vugs) and can have
significant fractures, which are often connected.
Limestone formations are associated with connate
water that can have high levels of divalent ions such
as Ca
2+
and Mg
2+
.
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
as Ca
2+
and Mg
2+
.
Vugular porosity and high divalent ion content in
their connate waters hinder the application of EOR
processes in limestone reservoirs.
Conversely, a sandstone formation can be composed
of such small sand grain sizes and be so tightly
packed that fluids will not readily flow through the
formation.
81
Other Classification of EOR
methods
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82
Three Main Methods
Miscible
Chemical
Thermal
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Thermal
83
MMISCIBLE D DISPLACEMENT
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MMISCIBLE D DISPLACEMENT
84
Introduction
If two fluids do not mix in all proportions to form a
single phase, the process is called immiscible immiscible.
In an immiscible displacement process, such as a
waterflood, the microscopic displacement efficiency, E
D
,
is generally much much less less than than unity unity. Part of the crude oil in
the places contacted by the displacing fluid is trapped.
When this condition is reached, relative permeability to
oil is reduced essentially to zero and continued injection
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
oil is reduced essentially to zero and continued injection
of the displacing fluid is ineffective because the fluid
simply flows around the trapped oil.
The oil does not move in the flowing stream because of
capillary forces, which prevent oil deformation and
passage through constrictions in the pore passages.
This limitation to oil recovery may be overcome by the
application of miscible displacement processes in which
there is an absence of a phase boundary or interface
between the displaced and displacing fluids. Interfacial
tension (IFT) is eliminated.
85
Introduction
The objective of miscible displacement is to increase
the oil recovery by reducing the residual oil
saturation to the lowest possible value.
Since residual oil saturation depends on the capillary
number NN
c c
, and since the residual oil saturation
decreases when the capillary number increases, the
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
decreases when the capillary number increases, the
interfacial tension should be reduced to its lowest
value by injecting a slug of miscible solvent driven by
natural gas until miscibility is achieved.
Then, only one phase will result from the mixture of
miscible fluids, with no interfaces and consequently
no IFT between the fluids.
86
Examples of miscibility and
immiscibility
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87
Miscible Displacement
It is the displacement of oil by fluid with
which it mixes in in all all proportions proportions without the
presence of an interface, all mixtures remain
as a single phase.
To improve the oil recovery, it is important to
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To improve the oil recovery, it is important to
use an injected fluid that is miscible with the
oil. Since the interfacial forces are eliminated,
there is no residual oil saturation S
or
and the
displacement efficiency is:
88
wi or
D
wi
1 S S
E 100%
1 S
− −
= =

Comparison to waterflood
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89
Miscible Slug Flooding
A certain volume of solvent is placed in contact with the oil with
which it is miscible, and is then followed up with a fluid C which is
immiscible with the oil O but miscible with the solvent S.
Two mixing zones are formed, one between 0 and S, the other
between C and S.
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90
C S O
The size of the bank of pure solvent continually decreases as the
sweep progresses.
The volume of the solvent slug injected should be such that the
bank of pure solvent is not exhausted before the 0-S mixture
breaks through at the production well, otherwise C and 0 , which
are not miscible, would come into contact. When this happens it is
known as a "miscibility miscibility rupture rupture".
The major difficulty in planning a miscible
displacement by solvent slug lies in the
selection of an adequate slug volume: neither
too small, to avoid the risk of a miscibility
rupture, nor too large, to protect the
economics of the project.
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91
Two Types of Miscibility
First contact miscibility Fluid injected is mixed
with reservoir oil directly at first contact.
The first-contact miscible injection fluids used
are liquid petroleum gas mixtures (LPG).
Multiple contact miscibility (Dynamic
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Multiple contact miscibility (Dynamic
miscibility). The injection fluid achieve
miscibility with the crude oil not on first
contact, but through components transfer from
one to another fluid)
Multiple-contact miscible injection fluids
are natural gas at high pressure, enriched
natural gas, flue gas, nitrogen, and carbon
dioxide.
92
Phase Behavior
The determination of the reservoir pressure
required to develop miscibility is essential.
Phase behavior and alteration of composition
leading to miscibility conditions can be determined
directly on a ternary or pseudoternary diagram.
Ternary diagrams allow description of the phase
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Ternary diagrams allow description of the phase
behavior of systems consisting of three components
at:
T = constant
p = constant
A pseudoternary diagram is the extension of
ternary diagrams to systems containing more than
three components, where certain components can
be grouped to form pseudo-components.
93
Ternary Diagram
The ternary diagram represents, on an
equilateral triangle, the phase behavior of a
three-component mixture.
Each corner of the equilateral triangle represents
one of the components (100 %), and each side
corresponds to zero percent of the component
represented by the opposite corner.
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
represented by the opposite corner.
94
Example
1.
60% A
20% B
20% C
2.
25% A
3.
10% A
70% B
20% C
4.
0.0% A
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25% A
40% B
35% C
95
0.0% A
25% B
75% C
Pseudoternary Phase Diagram
The pseudoternary diagram
represents the phase
behavior of a
multicomponent system,
such as a hydrocarbon
reservoir, by grouping the
components of the reservoir
fluids into three pseudo-
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fluids into three pseudo-
components :
the light component (such as
methane) =C
1
the intermediate hydrocarbons
(rich gas, light oil, or
condensate) = C
2
-C
6
the heavy hydrocarbons
(heavy oil) = C
7+
96
L
1
The tie line is connecting
the equilibrium gas and
liquid compositions. The tie
lines must vanish as the
Plait point is reached since
all phase compositions are
equal at this point.
The dew point curve
L
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The Plait point is the critical point where these curves meet
and form the binodal curve which separates regions of one-
phase behavior with compositions lying outside the curve
and of two-phase behavior with compositions lying inside
the curve.
The dew point curve
connects all the dew point
compositions.
The bubble point curve
connects all the bubble
point compositions.
L
1
97
The two-phase region's size is reduced when
pressure is increased and is increased when
temperature increases.
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98
First-Contact Miscibility (FCM)
The first-contact miscible injection fluids used are
liquid petroleum gas mixtures (LPG).
These solvents mix directly with reservoir oils in all
proportions and the mixture remains single phase.
LPG solvent is represented by C
2-6
, the driving gas
of the solvent slug by C
1
, and the heavy
hydrocarbons pseudo-component by C
7+
.
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99
As we observe, not only is LPG first-contact miscible
with reservoir oil, but LPG diluted with C
1
up to
composition A is also directly miscible with reservoir
oil. In fact, the miscibility between reservoir oil, LPG,
and C
1
is represented by the area of the triangle OC
2-6
A, where OA is the line tangent to the binodal curve.
Any higher proportion of C
1
existing in composition A
will move the line segment OA to intercept the binodal
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
will move the line segment OA to intercept the binodal
curve and pass through the two-phase region where
the miscibility is lost. In reality, the phase behavior
during miscible displacement of the oil by the solvent
slug is more complex.
As the solvent slug continues to pass through the
reservoir it also mixes with the driving gas behind it.
A dilution process starts which moves the composition
profile to intersect the two-phase region where the
direct miscibility is lost.
100
Multiple-Contact Miscibility (MCM)
Multiple-contact miscible injection fluids are
natural gas at high pressure, enriched natural
gas, flue gas, nitrogen, and carbon dioxide.
There are two processes through which dynamic
miscible displacement can be achieved in the
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miscible displacement can be achieved in the
reservoir, namely, condensing gas drive and
vaporizing gas drive.
Both processes are related to the location of the
reservoir oil's composition on a pseudo-ternary
diagram with respect to the limiting tie line (the
tangent line to the binodal curve through the
Plait point).
101
Condensing gas drive process
The reservoir oil
composition "0" lies to
the left left of the limiting tie
line PB on the pseudo-
ternary diagram and
when the injected
solvent, which is a
mixture of natural gas
(C ) and intermediates
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
(C
1
) and intermediates
(C
2-6
), has a composition
lying between A and B.
The miscibility results
from the in situ transfer
(condensation) of
intermediate
hydrocarbon from the
solvent injected into the
reservoir oil.
102
Condensing Gas Drive Process
Assuming that natural gas with the minimum
concentration of C
2-6
(point B) is injected into the
reservoir with oil composition "0," the mechanism of
dynamic miscibility takes place as follows:
The compositions of all mixtures of two fluids, after
their first contact, are represented by the straight
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
their first contact, are represented by the straight
line OB, and most fall within the two-phase region.
The resultant two-phase mixture is M
1
, and its tie line
connects the equilibrium liquid phase composition L
1
with the equilibrium gas phase composition G
1
.
Further injection of solvent B contacts equilibrium
liquid phase composition L
1
and forms a new overall
mixture M
2
with an equilibrium liquid phase
composition L
2
and an equilibrium gas phase
composition G
2
.
103
Condensing Gas Drive Process
Continued injection of solvent B enriches the reservoir's
overall mixtures M
1
, M
2
, M
3 …
with more intermediate
components C
2-6
. A transition zone is created along the
bubble point curve with equilibrium liquid phase
compositions L
1
, L
2
, L
3
… until the Plait point P
composition is reached and the reservoir oil becomes
directly miscible with the injected solvent B.
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For a given solvent composition there is a minimum
pressure called the minimum miscibility pressure (MMP)
above which the dynamic miscibility can be obtained in a
condensing gas drive process.
Since the two-phase region size of a pseudo-ternary
diagram is reduced when reservoir pressure is
increased, lower lower concentrations concentrations of intermediates C
2-6
in
the injected solvent are needed to accomplish miscibility
at higher higher reservoir reservoir pressures pressures.
104
Vaporizing gas drive process
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The vaporizing gas drive process takes place when the
reservoir reservoir oil oil composition "0" lies on on or to to the the right right of the
limiting tie line PB (crude oil reach in intermediates), and when
the injected solvent solvent has a composition lying to the left left of the
limiting tie line and also to the left of the tangent line OA.
The injected solvents used are natural natural gas gas at at high high pressure pressure
(the high pressure gas process), flue flue gas gas, nitrogen nitrogen, and Co Co
22
.
105
Vaporizing gas drive process
The miscibility is attained above a minimum
miscibility pressure which has different values
corresponding to the different gases injected and
to different reservoir oil compositions.
The mechanism of multiple-contact miscibility
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The mechanism of multiple-contact miscibility
results from the in situ mass transfer through
vaporization of intermediate hydrocarbon
components from the reservoir oil into the
injected gas.
106
Natural Gas C
1
at high pressure
The injected high-pressure gas
C
1
in contact with the reservoir
oil "O" vaporizes, or extracts
some C
2-6
hydrocarbons from oil.
A gas phase G
1
results, with
intermediate hydrocarbons in
equilibrium with the liquid phase
L
1
. The two-phase mixture has
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
L
1
. The two-phase mixture has
the overall composition M
1
.
Further injection of gas C
1
pushes the equilibrium gas G
1
so
that it contacts more fresh
reservoir oil "O", extracts more
intermediates, and reaches a
new overall composition M
2
.
107
At the ends of the tie line are the equilibrium gas phase
composition G
2
which has more intermediate hydrocarbons
and the equilibrium liquid phase composition L
2
.
Natural Gas C
1
at high pressure
Continued injection of gas C
1
causes G
2
to contact more
fresh reservoir oil "O",
enriching the gas phase
composition at the
displacing front along the
dew point curve from G
2
to
G and so on, until the Plait
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
G
3
and so on, until the Plait
point P composition and
direct miscibility is reached.
108
Minimum Miscibility Pressure
(MMP)
MMP is an important concept associated with the
description of miscible gas injection processes.
It is defined as the lowest pressure at which a
crude oil and a solvent develop miscibility
dynamically. At this pressure, the injected gas and
the initial oil in place become multi contact
miscible, and the displacement process becomes
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
miscible, and the displacement process becomes
very efficient.
The primary experimental methods to evaluate
miscibility under reservoir conditions are:
the slim-tube displacement,
the rising bubble apparatus
and the technique of constructing pressure
composition (P-X) diagrams.
109
Slim-Tube Displacement Test
Slim-tube is a narrow tube packed with sand or
glass beads.
The tube is saturated with oil at reservoir
temperature above the saturation pressure.
The oil is then displaced from the tube by injecting
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The oil is then displaced from the tube by injecting
the gas at constant pressure. Several displacements
are conducted at different pressures, some above
MMP and the others below MMP and the oil recovery
is monitored during the displacements.
The miscibility conditions are then determined by
plotting the oil recovery versus pressure. The point
on the plot at which the recovery changes slope is
considered to be the MMP.
110
Slimtube MMP Determination
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111
Carbon Dioxide Miscible
Flooding
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112
CO
2
EOR is a technology that targets the residual oil
in depleted oil reservoirs by the injection of carbon
dioxide (CO
2
).
Where is it applied?
In depleted light-oil reservoirs that have gone
through primary recovery (natural flow) and, in most
What is CO
2
EOR?
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
through primary recovery (natural flow) and, in most
cases, secondary recovery (mainly waterflooding).
How does it work?
CO
2
is a solvent: it mixes with the oil
Oil expands (swells)
Oil viscosity is reduced
Interfacial tension (IFT) disappears
113
Co
2
Phase Behavior
CO
2
is a colorless, odorless, inert and non-
combustible gas.
It has a molecular weight of 44 44. .01 01, which are one
and half times higher than that of air.
CO
2
is solid at low temperatures and pressures. The
solid carbon dioxide (dry ice) evaporates directly to
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
solid carbon dioxide (dry ice) evaporates directly to
gas at ––78 78. .55 ° °CC (- 110.7 °F) and is used primarily as
a refrigerant.
CO
2
is usually transported as a liquid in refrigerated
trucks or tank cars when it can be utilized in small
amounts.
The liquid and vapor phases of CO
2
co-exist at the
critical point: T
c
= 30 30. .77 ° °CC (87.8 °F) and PP
c c
= = 73 73 atm atm
(1073 psia).
114
Co
2
Phase Diagram
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115
Multiple-contact Miscibility
Multiple-contact miscibility of
C0
2
with light- and medium-
gravity crude oils is generated
as a vaporizing vaporizing gas gas drive drive
mechanism mechanism.
C0
2
at appropriate pressures
vaporizes or extracts heavier
hydrocarbons (C
5
through C
30
)
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
hydrocarbons (C
5
through C
30
)
from the oil and concentrates
them at the displacement front
where miscibility is achieved.
Dynamic miscibility with C0
2
is
possible through a vaporizing
gas drive mechanism for
reservoir reservoir fluid fluid compositions compositions
lying to the the right right of the
limiting tie line on a
pseudoternary diagram.
116
Multiple-contact Miscibility
The difference between the vaporizing gas drive
mechanism with C0
2
and with natural gas (methane)
is that dynamic miscibility with C0
2
does not require
the presence of intermediate-molecular-weight
hydrocarbons in the reservoir fluid.
The extraction of a broad range of hydrocarbons from
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The extraction of a broad range of hydrocarbons from
the reservoir oil often causes dynamic miscibility to
occur at attainable pressures which are lower than
the miscibility pressure for dry hydrocarbon gas.
117
MMP can be increased by the increase of nitrogen and
methane content and decreased by the increase of
hydrogen sulfide content.
CO
2
Minimum Miscibility Pressure
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118
Why CO
2
?
Miscible at lower pressures than nitrogen or
methane
Cheaper and more plentiful than LPG/enriched
hydrocarbon gas
Density (in dense phase) closer to reservoir
fluids – oil/water
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fluids – oil/water
119
WAG and Continuous CO
2
Injection
The mobility ratio is a fraction that compares the
ability of a solvent to flow through porous media
relative to the fluid that it is intended to displace.
Darcy’s law enables the mobility ratio for CO
2
and
oil to be expressed as follows:
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Because the viscosity of dense CO
2
is typically
significantly less than that of the oil, the mobility
ratio for a CO
2
flood is greater than unity. This
unfavorable ratio results in viscous fingering of the
CO
2
and the associated problems.
Mobility control refers to a technique that reduces
the mobility ratio in an attempt to reduce or
suppress fingering by changing the relative
permeability or viscosity values such that M ≤ 1.
120
Mobility control has been most readily accomplished
with the injection of both CO
2
and water into the
formation, usually in an alternating sequence that
promotes near-wellbore injectivity and diminishes
mobility away from the wellbore.
The alternating injection of brine and CO
2
does not
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
The alternating injection of brine and CO
2
does not
make the CO
2
more viscous; rather it increases the
water saturation and thereby decreases the CO
2
saturation within the pores. The reduction of CO
2
saturation causes a reduction in the relative
permeability of CO
2
. This in turn lowers the mobility
ratio and inhibits the formation of viscous fingers.
121
Example
Consider the Basal
Cambrian Sandstone.
At a CO
2
saturation of 00. .77
and an irreducible brine
saturation of 00. .33, the
relative permeability of
CO is 00. .52 52.
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
CO
2
is 00. .52 52.
If the CO
2
saturation is
only 00. .44, however, the
relative permeability of
CO
2
is only ~00. .04 04 and the
relative permeability of
the brine is ~00. .22 22.
122
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123
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124
Slug Size: More CO
2
= More Oil
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125
CO
2
Sources
A reliable source of supply for CO
2
is very
important because the gas must be available on a
continuous basis in large volumes for long periods
of time between 5 to 10 years or more. The CO
2
gas used must have a purity of 90 % or more.
The best CO
2
sources are naturally occurring high high--
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The best CO
2
sources are naturally occurring high high--
pressure pressure gas gas reservoirs reservoirs with high-purity CO
2
, and
industrial sources.
The economics of a CO
2
miscible project are
improved if CO
2
wells are located in the same
geologic basins as those that produce oil.
126
Transportation of CO
2
The method of transportation of CO
2
from its
source to the oil field depends on whether the CO
2
is liquid or gas. For small injection rates of 1 to 5
MM scf/day and short injection periods, CO
2
is
liquefied at its source and transported to the
project sites by refrigerated trucks, tank trucks,
tank cars, or in storage tanks located on barges.
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Transporting the CO
2
liquid at 0° F and 300 psi
using existing insulated steel containers is the
least costly method of transportation.
The CO
2
necessary for large long-term projects is
transported most economically through a pipeline
as vapor at pressures between 1400 to 2000 psi
so that two-phase flow does not occur.
127
Cyclic CO
2
Stimulation
Cyclic carbon dioxide stimulation, also known as the
“huff-and-puff” method, is a single-well operation,
which is developing as a method of rapidly producing
oil.
Similar to the cyclic steam process, CO
2
is injected into
an oil reservoir, the well is shut in for a time, providing
for a "soak period," then is opened, allowing the oil and
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for a "soak period," then is opened, allowing the oil and
fluids to be produced.
The dissolving of the CO
2
in the oil reduces the oil’s
viscosity and causes it to swell, allowing the oil to flow
more easily toward the well.
The process can also be used in heavy oil reservoirs by
high-pressure injection of CO
2
to facilitate miscibility
between the oil and CO
2
, and in cases where thermal
methods are not feasible.
128
Chemical Flooding Processes
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129
Chemical Flooding
Chemical flooding processes are displacement
processes that improve oil recovery from reservoirs
with the aid of chemicals that are generally called
surfactants, polymers, and alkalis.
These chemicals are combined in various
proportions to create injection systems which are
termed polymer/surfactant process, and
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termed polymer/surfactant process, and
alkali/surfactant/polymer (ASP) process.
Chemical flooding processes improve oil recovery by
lowering the interfacial tension (IFT) between oil
and water, solubilization of the oil in the micelles,
emulsification of the oil and water, alteration of the
wettability of the rock, and enhancement of the
mobility of the displacing fluids.
130
For each application of chemical flooding, the
chemicals must be formulated and tailored to the
properties of the reservoir rock and its fluid system.
This usually requires extensive testing of various
combinations of the chemicals in laboratory
coreflood tests followed with a pilot test in the field.
There are few field-wide chemical flooding projects
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There are few field-wide chemical flooding projects
in the world in comparison with either CO
2
or HC gas
injections projects. The decline of chemical flooding
can be attributed to the high cost of the chemicals
and higher risk associated with achieving predicted
oil recoveries with field-wide projects.
The chemical flooding processes that have been
applied in the field are surfactant/polymer floods,
ASP floods, and polymer floods.
131
Polymer Flooding
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Polymer Flooding
132
Polymers Reduce Water-Oil
Mobility Ratio
The role of water-soluble polymers is to increase the water
viscosity and also to reduce the permeability of the rock to
water, in other words, to reduce the water-oil mobility ratio
close to unity or less. Then, the volumetric sweep efficiency E
v
will be improved and a higher oil recovery will be achieved at
breakthrough with polymer flooding than with waterflooding.
After water breakthrough into the producers, the flow of the
two phases (water and oil) in the swept area of the reservoir
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two phases (water and oil) in the swept area of the reservoir
is controlled by the fractional flow equation of Buckley and
Leverett (1942),
Where
f
w
= fraction of water in the flowing stream passing any point in
the swept area (i.e., the water cut)
k
o
, k
w
= effective rock permeabilities to oil and to water,
respectively, at one given water saturation at one point in the
reservoir
µ
o
, µ
w
= oil and water viscosities
133
( )( )
w w o o
w
k k 1
1
f
µ µ +
=
when water viscosity µ
w
increases and the
permeability of the rock to water k
w
decreases, the
fractional flow of oil will increase, improving the rate
of oil recovery.
Permeability reduction and a higher water viscosity
will increase the resistance to flow of the polymer
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will increase the resistance to flow of the polymer
solution diverting it toward areas unswept by water.
134
( ) ( )
o w
ro o w rw
1
f 1 f 1
1 k k
= − = −
+ µ µ
The addition of large-molecular-weight molecules
called polymers to an injected water can often
increase the effectiveness of a conventional
waterflood.
Polymers are usually added to the water in
concentrations ranging from 250 to 2000 parts
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concentrations ranging from 250 to 2000 parts
per million (ppm).
A polymer solution is more viscous than brine
without polymer. In a flooding application, the
increased viscosity will alter the mobility ratio
between the injected fluid and the reservoir oil.
The improved mobility ratio will lead to better
vertical and areal sweep efficiencies and thus
higher oil recoveries.
135
Method Description
A slug of 00. .33 PV PV or higher of polymer solution is
injected into the reservoir with a prior injection of a
low salinity brine (freshwater) slug. The polymer
slug is followed by another freshwater slug and by
continuous drive water injection.
The polymer solution slug is injected between 2
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The polymer solution slug is injected between 2
freshwater buffers in order to attenuate the direct
contact with the saline reservoir water. The saline
water reduces the polymer solution's viscosity.
The polymer flooding does not reduce the residual
oil saturation. In comparison with waterflooding, it
improves oil recovery and accelerates oil production
over by increasing the reservoir volume contacted.
136
Effect of polymer flooding
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137
Polymer Types
Polyacrylamides
Polysaccharides
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138
Polyacrylamides
Advantages Advantages
less expensive and providing higher
resistance to drive water injection
Disadvantages Disadvantages
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Disadvantages Disadvantages
Sensitive to salts ,Highly affected by
temperature conditions, the presence
of oxygen and high velocity
139
Polysaccharides
Advantages Advantages
Not affected by salinity, and shearing
effects
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Disadvantages Disadvantages
Expensive and its stability degrades
at temperatures above 200 °F,
Subjected to biodegradation by
enzymes.
140
Resistance Factor
The measure of the mobility reduction is known as the
resistance factor, R
Where
λ
p
= water-soluble polymer mobility
k
rw
, k
rp
= relative permeabilities to water and to
o p
o w
rp w
p rw
p rp
w rw
p
w
M
M
k
k
k
k
R


= = = =
µ
µ
µ
µ
λ
λ
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
k
rw
, k
rp
= relative permeabilities to water and to
polymer solution, respectively
µ
p
= viscosity of the polymer solution (apparent)
M
w-o
, M
p-o
= water-oil and polymer solution-oil
mobility ratios, respectively
For example, if a resistance factor of 10 is observed, it
is 10 times more difficult for the polymer solution to
flow through the system, or the mobility of water is
reduced 10-fold.
141
Residual Resistance Factor
The measure of the reduction of rock's
permeability to water after polymer flow is
known as the residual resistance factor, R
R
.
( ) flow polymer before k µ
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142
( )
( ) flow polymer after k
flow polymer before k
R
w rw
w rw
R
µ
µ
=
Polymer Retention
Polymer retention is expressed by adsorption adsorption of
the polymer on rock surface and by entrapment entrapment of
polymer molecules in small spaces which cause
the permeability reduction.
Adsorption Adsorption
Adsorped polymers represent an additional
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Adsorped polymers represent an additional
resistance to flow and a loss of polymers.
During adsorption the polymers leave the porous
medium have a lower concentration than before.
The higher the polymer concentration before
flowing through the pore space the higher will be
the adsorption on the rock surface.
The reduction of polymer concentration is used as
a measure of adsorption.
143
Entrapment Entrapment
The pore spaces in the reservoir rock have
different pore sizes.
The long chain of polymer molecules can easily
flow into the large pore sizes but cannot leave it if
the other end has a smaller opening. Then the
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the other end has a smaller opening. Then the
polymer molecule is trapped.
Up to 30% of the total pore volume may not be
accessible to polymer molecules, This allow
polymers to displace oil, from the other part of
the reservoir, at rate faster than predicted.
In other word the effective porosity, that is
available to polymer solution is much less than
that is available for brine.
144
Tutorial
Reservoir Properties
S
wi
0.20
K
rw
0.18
K
ro
0.60
µ
w
0.473 cp
µ
o
6.4 cp
Resistance Factor R 6
Compare, at a water cut of 95
percent, the final oil recovery
Factors expected through
conventional water injection and
polymer waterflooding.
The reservoir properties are shown
on the table.
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M Oil
Recovery
WOR=1 WOR=5 WOR=25 WOR=100
4 E % 13.75 23.95 35.7 41.3
0.666 E % 25 35 42.4 46.6
145
Resistance Factor R 6
Surfactant Flooding
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146
Surfactant Flooding
What is Surfactant ?
Surfactant is the abbreviation of:
“surface active agent material ’’
Why use the Surfactant in the EOR?
To reduce oil-water interfacial tension and
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To reduce oil-water interfacial tension and
increases the oil displacement efficiency.
Surfactant flooding has been employed mostly
in light oil reservoirs, but could also be
considered in the case of moderately viscous
oils.
147
The surfactant migrates to the interface between the oil and
A surfactant is a
surface active agent
that contains a
hydrophobic
(“dislikes” water) part
to the molecule and a
hydrophilic (“likes”
water) part.
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The surfactant migrates to the interface between the oil and
water phases and helps make the two phases more
miscible.
Interfacial tensions can be reduced from ~30 dyn/cm,
found in typical waterflooding applications, to 10
−4
dyn/cm
with the addition of as little as 0.1–5.0 wt% surfactant to
water–oil systems.
The reduction of interfacial tension results in a shifting of
the relative permeability curves such that the oil will flow
more readily at lower oil saturations.
148
water) part.
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149
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150
If surfactant is mixed in water at a
low concentration it forms a
solution.
If the concentration is increased
over some critical amount, the
surfactant molecules cling
together in clusters called
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together in clusters called
micelles.
If oil is mixed into this surfactant-
water system, the micelles can
solubilize or dissolve it by forcing
microscopic sized droplets into the
center of the micelles. These are
sometimes referred to as swollen
micelles (micro-emulsions).
151
Critical Micelle Concentration
CMC
At low concentrations,
surfactant molecules exist
in solution as monomers
(individual molecules of
surfactant).
At higher concentrations,
the surfactant molecules
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the surfactant molecules
saturate the surface and
start forming aggregates in
solution called micelles.
Micelles are formed once
the surfactant exceeds a
given concentration called
the crtitical micelle
concentration, CMC.
152
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153
Formulation of Surfactant Slug
The injected slug is formulated with three or more
components. The basic components (hydrocarbon,
surfactant and water) are sufficient to form the
micellar solutions. A cosurfactant fourth
component (usually alcohol) can be added.
Electrolytes, normally inorganic salts, form a fifth
component that may be used in preparing the
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component that may be used in preparing the
micellar solutions or microemulsions.
Alcohol added to the solution is called a co-
surfactant. It aids in the adjustment of the
viscosity, it helps the micelles solubilize more oil
or water and to swell to greater proportions, and it
stabilizes the solution. The presence of a co-
surfactant helps reduce adsorption of the
surfactant to reservoir rock, a persistent problem
in the use of surfactants for oil recovery.
154
Formulation of Surfactant Slug
An electrolyte added to the micellar solution also
aids in the adjustment of viscosity. The electrolyte
is usually a salt such as sodium chloride or
ammonium sulfate.
The optimum composition of a micellar solution
should be determined in the laboratory for each
prospective reservoir, considering the reservoir
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prospective reservoir, considering the reservoir
fluids, temperature, and rock.
The range of composition can be:
155
Surfactant 4% to 10%
Hydrocarbon 4% to 80%
Co-surfactant About 4%
Electrolyte About 1%
Water 10 % to 92%
Surfactant Flooding
In the first concept, a solution containing a
low concentration of surfactant is injected.
The surfactant is dissolved in either water or
oil and is in equilibrium with aggregates of
the surfactant known as micelles.
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Large pore volumes (about 15 to 60 % or
more) of the solution are injected into the
reservoir to reduce interfacial tension
between oil and water and, thereby, increase
oil recovery.
156
Surfactant Flooding
In the second concept, a relatively small pore volume
(about 3 to 20%) of a higher concentration surfactant
solution is injected into the reservoir.
With the higher surfactant concentration, the micelles
become a surfactant-stabilized dispersion of either
water in hydrocarbon or hydrocarbon in water. The
high surfactant concentration allows the amount of
dispersed phase in the micro emulsion to be high as
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dispersed phase in the micro emulsion to be high as
compared with the low value in the dispersed phase
of the micelles in the low concentration surfactant
solutions.
The high concentration surfactant solutions displace
both oil and water and rapidly displace all the oil
contacted in the reservoir. As the high concentration
slug moves through the reservoir, it is diluted by
formation fluids and the process reverts to a low-
concentration flood.
157
Petroleum Sulfonates
The most common surfactants used in surfactant flooding
are petroleum sulfonates (sulfonated hydrocarbons).
In developing surfactant systems, petroleum sulfonates
were selected because of the wide range of properties
available within a common surfactant type, their
relatively low cost and potential availability in large
supply.
Commercially available petroleum sulfonates are
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Commercially available petroleum sulfonates are
generally characterized as oil soluble "mahogany”
sulfunates or as water soluble "sludge" or "green acid"
sulfonates. The latter group generally has an average
molecular weight in the range of 350 and may contain
polysulfonates.
The "mahogany" sulfonates are generally
monosulfonates and are available as products of
commerce having average molecular weights varying
from approximately 400 to about 550.
158
Alkaline Flooding
It is also called (Caustic Flooding)
This method requires the injection of alkaline chemicals
(caustic solutions) into a reservoir. The reaction of these
chemicals with petroleum acids in the reservoir rock
results in the in situ formation of surfactants.
When the formation of surfactant molecules occurs in situ,
the interfacial tension between the brine and oil phases
could be reduced. The reduction of interfacial tension
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could be reduced. The reduction of interfacial tension
causes the microscopic displacement efficiency to
increase, which thereby increases oil recovery.
Alkalis used for in situ formation of surfactants include
sodium hydroxide, sodium carbonate, sodium orthosilicate,
sodium tripolyphosphate, sodium metaborate, ammonium
hydroxide, and ammonium carbonate.
Sodium hydroxide has been the most popular. Sodium
orthosilicate has some advantages in brines with high
divalent ion content.
159
Alkaline Flooding
There are optimum concentrations of
alkaline and salt and optimum pH
where the interfacial tension values
experience a minimum. Finding these
requires a screening procedure.
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When the interfacial tension is
lowered to a point where the capillary
number is greater than 10−5, oil can
be mobilized and displaced.
160
Difference Between Surfactant &
Caustic Flooding
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161
Displacement Mechanisms
Several mechanisms have been suggested
regarding oil displacement by alkaline flooding.
There are four different mechanisms based on oil
emulsification and wettability reversal.
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162
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163
Alkaline reacting with the organic acids to
form surfactants.
Soap (surfactant) reduce the interfacial
tension.
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Capillary number increase so Sor decrease
and an incremental increase in oil recovery can
result.
This mechanism is referred to as emulsification
and entrainment because the oil-in-water
emulsion formed is entrained by the fluid flow
and can then be produced.
164
In oil wet reservoir where oil is
continuous phase, the alkaline agent
changes the injection water pH.
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The rock Wettability
reversed from oil wet
to water wet.
The relative permeability to water
decrease.
165
In water wet reservoir where residual oil
is discontinuous, non wetting oil changed to
continuous wetting phase at certain
conditions (Temp, Salinity, PH).
The presence of water droplets in the
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The presence of water droplets in the
continuous oil-wet phase raises the
pressure gradient of the flow through
porous medium. The capillary forces are
overcome and residual oil saturation is
reduced.
166
Entrapment of oil emulsion droplets by
small pores.
Flow diverted into poorly swept or unswept
areas.
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areas.
Improve the volumetric sweep efficiency.
167
Method Description
The basic alkaline flooding process starts with a
softened water preflush injection followed by the
injection of an alkaline solution of about 10 to 30
percent PV and by contniuous injection of drive water.
Because of the complexity of the mineralogy and
lithology of petroleum reservoirs the possible
reactions between rock-alkaline solutions-saline
water and oil in the existing conditions of pressure
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water and oil in the existing conditions of pressure
and temperature are considerable.
This explains the effort put into laboratory alkaline
flooding tests and field trials to design properly the
best system for specific reservoir conditions.
The state-of-the-art techniques for alkaline flooding
utilize alkaline agents in combination with low
concentrations of synthetic surfactant and polymer
for mobility control.
168
Micellar–Polymer Processes
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169
Method Description
Preflush. When the reservoir water salinity is too
high, direct contact with the micellar solution is
avoided by first injecting a low-salinity brine slug
which adjusts salinity and hardness.
Micellar solution. This is prepared either as a low-
or high-surfactant concentration solution. In the
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or high-surfactant concentration solution. In the
first case, large pore volumes of 15 to 60 percent
or more of solution are injected into the reservoir,
and the residual oil is displaced gradually from the
porous space contacted. In the second case, a
small pore volume (about 3 to 10 percent) of high
concentration surfactant solution rapidly displaces
the oil contacted. The process later becomes low
concentration due to dilution with formation
fluids.
170
Method Description
Polymer slug. This is necessary to control the
mobilities, backing up the micellar slug and
preventing it from being penetrated by the
chase water.
Chase water. This represents the driving
energy necessary to propel the MP solution
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energy necessary to propel the MP solution
through the reservoir to the producers.
The MP flood process applied in the field may
differ in many details since the chemical
system for a specific reservoir needs to be
established by laboratory experiments.
171
Alkali/Surfactant/Polymer (ASP)
Flooding
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Flooding
172
ASP Flooding
Alkali/surfactant/polymer (ASP) flooding is more widely
used than micellar/polymer flooding in field
applications. ASP formulation utilizes the favorable
mechanisms of its key components (alkali, surfactant
and polymer) to improve oil recovery.
The main functions of the alkaline component are to
promote emulsification of the crude oil, reduce IFT and
reduce adsorption of the surfactants.
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reduce adsorption of the surfactants.
The main function of the surfactants is to reduce IFT
between the oil and the injected slugs.
The polymers are used for mobility control and
improvement of sweep efficiencies.
The favorable attributes of ASP formulations have been
tested and proven in many laboratory and field tests.
ASP flooding has been applied in most cases to
sandstone reservoirs but laboratory and pilot tests
suggest that it can also be applied to carbonate
reservoirs.
173
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174
Thermal Flooding
The most obvious effect of heating a
reservoir is reduction of oil
viscosity.
Two points are evident that, first,
the rate of viscosity improvement is
greatest at the initial temperature
increases. Little viscosity benefit is
gained after reaching a certain
temperature.
Second, greater viscosity reductions
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Second, greater viscosity reductions
are experienced in the more viscous
low API gravity crudes than in
higher API gravity crudes.
Heating from 100°F to 200°F
reduces viscosity 98% for 10° API
crudes, but only 73% for 30° API
oils.
These observations show that
greatest viscosity reduction occurs
with the more viscous oils at the
initial temperature increases.
175
Thermal EOR
The principle of thermal EOR is that heat increases the
mobility of oil by the viscosity.
Oil mobility is increased relative to that of water and the
mobility ratio is reduced allowing more favorable
displacement.
rw w
w
o ro o
k
M
k
µ
 
λ
 
= =
λ µ
 
 
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
displacement.
Three thermal recovery methods have been
investigated:
Steam Stimulation
Steam Drive
In Situ Combustion
Thermal methods are generally used in heavy oils rich in
high molecular weight aromatics and asphaltenes. The
principal difficulty in extracting such oils is the very high
viscosity.
176
Cyclic Steam Stimulation
Also known as the “huff-and-puff” method.
Steam is injected into the reservoir, then the well is
shut in to allow the steam to heat the producing
formation around the well.
After a sufficient time, generally a week or two, the
injection wells are placed back in production until
the heat is dissipated with the produced fluids.
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the heat is dissipated with the produced fluids.
This cycle may be repeated until the response
becomes marginal because of declining natural
reservoir pressure and increased water production.
At this stage a continuous steam flood is usually
initiated to continue the heating and thinning of the
oil and to replace declining reservoir pressure so
that production may continue.
177
Cyclic Steam Stimulation
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178
Cyclic Steam Injection Process
Scheme
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179
Steam Drive
Recovery by steam flooding is commonly used in heavy-oil
reservoirs containing oil whose high viscosity is a limiting
factor for achieving commercial oil-producing rates.
It has also been considered, however, as a method for
recovering additional light oil.
In this process, steam is continuously introduced into an
injection well.
When steam is injected into the reservoir, heat is
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When steam is injected into the reservoir, heat is
transferred to the oil bearing formation, reservoir fluids
and some of the adjacent cap and base rock. The heat
reduces the oil viscosity. This increases the mobility of oil.
As the steam loses heat energy it condenses to yield a
mixture of steam and hot water. Because of pressure
gradient towards producing well, an oil bank is formed
ahead of steam zone. This enables the immobile oil to get
produced from the reservoir.
In general steam reduces the oil saturation in the steam
zone to very low value (about 10±%).
180
An added bonus from the use of
steam in both steam flooding and
cyclic steam stimulation is the
flushing of liners and casing
perforations, as well as the reduction
of deposits that may build up in the
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of deposits that may build up in the
wells.
Possible flow restrictions to oil
production through the wells are thus
reduced.
181
In situ Combustion
In situ combustion, or "Fire flooding," is commonly
used to recover heavy oil that is too viscous to be
produced by conventional means.
The fireflood is generally maintained by igniting air to
create a combustion zone that moves through the
formation toward production wells.
The intense heat forms zones of steam and vaporized
oil that move in advance of the combustion zone
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oil that move in advance of the combustion zone
toward production wells, where the oil, water, and
gases are brought to the surface and separated.
There are three forms of in-situ combustion
processes:
dry forward combustion,
reverse combustion,
and wet combustion.
182
In-situ Combustion Process
This process is sometimes started by lowering
a heater heater or or ignitor ignitor into an injection well. Air Air is
then injected down the well, and the heater heater is is
operated until ignition is accomplished.
After heating the surrounding rock, the heater heater
is is withdrawn withdrawn, but air air injection injection is is continued continued to
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is is withdrawn withdrawn, but air air injection injection is is continued continued to
maintain the advancing combustion front.
Water Water is sometimes injected simultaneously or
alternately with air, creating creating steam steam which
contributes to better heat utilization and
reduced air requirements.
183
Dry Forward Combustion
This was the most commonly used form of the
combustion processes.
It is dry dry because no water is injected along with air.
It is forward forward because combustion starts at the injector
and the combustion front moves in the direction of the
air flow.
Two things need to be pointed out.
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
Two things need to be pointed out.
First, the region near the producer is cold, at the
original temperature of the reservoir. If the unheated
oil is highly viscous, it cannot be pushed forward by
the heated oil at its back that has been made mobile
by the high temperature of the combustion zone. This
phenomenon is called “liquid liquid blocking blocking.”
Second, the temperature of the region in the back of
the combustion zone is high, indicating a great amount
of heat being stored in the region, not used efficiently.
184
Reverse Combustion
it should be called dry dry reverse reverse combustion combustion, because
normally only air is injected, no water.
A simple example will help to explain how reverse
combustion works. In ordinary cigarette smoking, one
ignites the tip of the cigarette and inhales. The burning
front will travel from the tip of the cigarette toward one’s
mouth, along with the air. This is forward forward combustion combustion.
The cigarette also can be burned if one exhales. This way,
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
The cigarette also can be burned if one exhales. This way,
the burning front still moves from the tip of the cigarette
toward one’s mouth, but the air flow is in the opposite
direction. This is, then, reverse reverse combustion combustion.
Injection is started in a well that will later be a producer.
After establishing ignition, the initial injector is put on
production, and another is used for injection. Oil heated at
the flame front moves through the heated zone to the
producing well. This method makes it possible to produce
oil which is too viscous to flow under reservoir conditions.
185
Wet Combustion
The term “wet combustion” actually refers to wet
forward combustion. This process was developed to
use the heat contained behind the combustion zone.
In this process, water is injected either alternately or
simultaneously with air. Because of its high heat
capacity and latent heat of vaporization, water is
capable of moving the heat behind the combustion
front forward, and helping to displace the oil in front
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
front forward, and helping to displace the oil in front
of the combustion zone.
The wet combustion process also is known as the
COFCAW process, which is an acronym for
“combination of forward combustion and waterflood.”
This process also can be construed as steamflood
with in-situ steam generation.
It should be noted that this method cannot prevent
liquid blocking and its application is limited by oil
viscosity, as is the dry forward combustion.
186
Heat Amount to the Formation
The heat losses in a steam injection system
begin at the steam generator and continue to the
surface injection lines, to the wellbore, and to
the adjacent strata.
The remaining heat is given up to the formation
itself, and some of it is transported with the
fluids produced.
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
fluids produced.
To evaluate the effect of steam injection on oil
displacement and recovery, the amount of heat
loss to adjacent strata must be known.
There is a graphical comparison by plotting on a
Cartesian scale the fraction of total heat injected
lost to adjacent strata, W
0
* versus the logarithm
of the dimensionless time function, t
D
.
187
Vertical heat loss W
0
* versus the
logarithm of the dimensionless
time function, t
D
The dimensionless time
is defined as
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Where
t = time, days
D= thermal
diffusivity of the cap
rock, ft
2
/day
h = formation
thickness, ft
188
The amount of heat lost to adjacent strata varies
directly with time of injection and inversely with
formation thickness.
So the heat lost can be a high percentage of the
cumulative heat injected in a steam drive process's
life time.
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To reduce the amount of heat lost to adjacent
strata, a process of heat scavenging is
accomplished by displacing the hot fluids "slug"
with cold water injection.
The process is also useful for saving energy when
the formation is heated and the steam breaks
through into the producers.
189
the cumulative heat loss resulting from injection of
hot fluid from time zero to time t
o
, followed by
injection of cold fluid from time t
o
to time t as:
Where
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
(W
0
)
t
= fraction of total heat injected in "slug" up to
time t that is lost
t = total time of injection (hot and cold fluid), days
t
o
= time heat was injected, days
W
0
* = is obtained from the graph at times t and t -
t
o
.
190
Example 1
Heat at an amount of 14 MM Btu/hr is injected as
wet steam into a formation 70 ft thick for a
period of 400 days followed by cold water
injection for another 500 days. Calculate the
vertical heat loss to adjacent strata if the
thermal diffusivity D = 0.96 ft
2
/day.
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
191
Heated Radius
The amount of heat lost to adjacent formations is
subtracted from the total amount of heat injected as wet
steam into the formation.
The remaining heat raises the temperature of the rock
and fluids content above the reservoir temperature.
The heated radius r
h
, assuming radial and uniform
propagation, can be calculated using Eq.
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
Where
Q
f
= net amount of heat available to formation, Btu
M
s
= heat capacity per cubic feet of steam saturated
rock, Btu/ft
3
x°F (32 to 38 Btu/ft
3
x °F )
T
s
= steam temperature, °F
T = reservoir temperature, °F
h = formation thickness, ft
192
Why Should In Situ Combustion
Be Considered?
Availability of air.
Reduced water requirement compared to steam.
Applicable to a wide range of reservoirs and fluid
characteristics.
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characteristics.
No theoretical pressure limitation.
Can be applied to deep reservoirs.
Lack of obvious alternatives.
193
Finally, it should be mentioned that steam generation
is costly in terms of:
Energy consumption and combustion of
hydrocarbons.
Environmental impact due to CO2 produced in the
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
Environmental impact due to CO2 produced in the
above combustion.
Use of fresh water, which can be scarce, treatment
and re-cycling of produced water.
The rewards are that the thermal processes can yield
high recovery factors.
194
Screening Criteria
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195
Summary
Steamflooding and polymer processes are currently
economically viable, with produced oil prices per barrel
within a range of $20 to $28.
In comparison, the CO
2
process is more costly, $26–$39.
The micellar–polymer process is even more expensive, at
$35–$46.
An aggressive research program is needed to assist in
making EOR processes more technologically and
December 2013 Nesrine MOUDIR– UFR GGR - IAP
making EOR processes more technologically and
economically sound.
Enhanced oil recovery technology should be considered
early in the producing life of a reservoir. Many of the
processes depend on the establishment of an oil bank in
order for the process to be successful.
When oil saturations are high, the oil bank in easier to
form. It is crucial for engineers to understand the
potential of EOR and the way EOR can be applied to a
particular reservoir.
196
Remember!!!
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197
Remember!!!
“EOR method is specific
for specific reservoir”