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SPE/Petroleum Society of CIM/CHOA 78988

Laboratory Investigation Of Gravity-Stable Waterflooding Using Toe-To-Heel
Displacement: Part L: Hele Shaw Model Results
A.T. Turta, C. Ayasse* J. Najman**, D. Fisher and A. Singhal, Petroleum Recovery Institute, Alberta Research Council
Copyright 2002, SPE/PS-CIM/CHOA International Thermal Operations and Heavy Oil
Symposium and International Horizontal Well Technology Conference.
This paper was prepared for presentation at the 2002 SPE International Thermal Operations
and Heavy Oil Symposium and International Horizontal Well Technology Conference held in
Calgary, Alberta, Canada, 4–7 November 2002.
This paper was selected for presentation by the ITOHOS/ICHWT Program Committee
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This paper presents results of the laboratory investigations
leading to development of a novel, radically different
waterflooding process, which is gravity stable. The new
process is called Toe-To-Heel Waterflooding (TTHW) and
uses vertical wells for injection, while horizontal wells are
utilized for production. Normally, the system uses a staggered
line drive configuration in which the toe of the horizontal
producer is close to the line of vertical injectors. The
horizontal section of producer is located at the top of oil
formation while the vertical injectors are perforated on the
lower section of the layer. By using the proposed
configuration, a short-distance oil displacement process is
achieved. The water/oil segregation causes the injected water
to slump, while the horizontal well as a sink causes water to
flow upwards; the composite of these two tendencies leads to
an advancement of water through almost all the entire pay
section, with the water break-through at the toe, followed by
an advancement of the displacement front along and under the
horizontal leg.
A 2-D Hele-Shaw model was used for investigations. The
Hele-Shaw model was composed of two parallel plexiglass
plates, which were held together at 0.1 mm; these vertical
plates form between them a simulated porous medium with a
permeability of about 833 D. The rectangular chamber
forming the simulated porous medium has the dimensions of
52cm* 21.4cm*0.01cm.
The Hele-Shaw model was intended to mimic the vertical
section of an oil reservoir and the investigations were designed

specifically for a comparative study of vertical sweep
efficiency for conventional waterflooding and toe-to-heel
waterflooding. These experiments do not permit an evaluation
of areal sweep efficiency.
In fact, two toe-to-heel processes were explored: one-phase
TTHW and two-phase TTHW; in the last case a blanket of
water is intentionally generated at the lower part of layer (by
keeping opened the vertical pilot hole of the horizontal
producer, while the horizontal leg is closed) and then only the
horizontal leg is kept opened (while the vertical pilot hole
is closed).
More than 20 low pressure (40-80psi) tests were carried out at
room temperature. First, some preliminary experiments were
conducted in order to establish a base line performance, to
provide calibration, or to study the main mechanisms of this
process. In these tests, colored water miscibly displaced plain
water in a toe-to-heel configuration; no gravity segregation
effect between displacing and displaced liquid existed. Also,
no mobility effects and two-phase flow along the horizontal
leg existed. Then, detailed experiments with five different oils
(with viscosity in the range 10 mPa.s to 12,000 mPa.s), and
water injection rates of 2.5 ml/hr to 320 ml/hr were
carried out.
A comparison between conventional waterflooding and
TTHW showed that in general for the heavy oils with
moderate viscosities, oil recoveries at water-break-through are
similar, but at the water-out, at the end of the test, the ultimate
oil recoveries were much higher for TTHW; this was a direct
consequence of higher vertical sweep efficiencies obtained.
Later on, 3-D tests conducted in a real porous medium reinforced that the concept was sound; the 3-D tests results will
be reported in part ll of this series.
Conventional waterfloods in light-heavy oil reservoirs are
limited by three main factors, namely:
Rock heterogeneity, leading to the water channelling
Gravity segregation (due to oil/water density contrast),
leading to under-riding of the injected water

On the other hand. injection pressures required to sustain an economically acceptable oil rate would be impractical and may lead to fracturing. a new approach to re-engineering of the gravity effect during displacement. using horizontal wells. the narrower is this region.2 Highly unfavourable water/oil mobility ratio. one can conclude the following: . For a stratified two-layer system. in order to achieve a gravity stable waterflood. rock heterogeneity is reflected in a pronounced vertical stratification. Initially. generally with unfavourable mobility ratios between injectant and oil. the SDOD processes tend to reduce its importance. as SDOD are specifically designed for high mobility injection fluids. The recovery decreases with increasing water/oil mobility ratio. for flooding heavy oil pools SDOD has now become feasible. a second alternative was adopted. So. However. instead of looking for solutions for making mobility ratio more favourable like in LDOD. All his calculations were for a case of water/oil density difference of 200 kg/m3.5).Vertical sweep efficiency is less than 20% when a high permeability interval is located at the bottom. The most important disadvantage of LDOD processes is the dependence of the displacement front advance on the distribution of properties (mainly permeability and viscosity) along the flow path. where displacement front advance depends only on the distribution of the same properties (mainly viscosity and permeability) in a region immediately ahead of the displacement front. The SDOD processes are defined as a broad category of displacement types in which the mobility (viscosity) of injectant is important.Vertical sweep efficiency is less than 40% for homogeneous systems. in order to achieve a gravity stable waterflood. the essential difference between TTH displacement processes. are long-distance oil displacement (LDOD) processes. . Usually. for such horizontal waterfloods. However. Outmans showed that this theory is equally valid for thin oil formations2. and increases with increasing ratio between viscous and gravity forces. high water injection rates discourage under-ride. at water/oil mobility ratios higher than 2. Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage (SAGD) and Vapor Extraction (Vapex) are also SDOD processes. To combat under-riding phenomenon in the conventional waterflooding. therefore they lead to higher oil recoveries. The effect of gravity segregation on waterflood performance was fully recognized in 1953 when the first mathematical model of water tonguing (under-riding) was published by Dietz1. but it no longer dominates the process. Conventional oil reservoir flooding methods (pattern or line drive configurations). A more significant feature is the short distance travel for any oil particle. Ekrann’s theoretical results were close to the laboratory results reported by Craig4. since for most heavy oil pools even if a mobility ratio of one is attained. Recently. the oil is “pushed” by the injectant from its original location to the outlet and. and the need to switch to SDOD was not felt so acutely. for moderate ratios between vertical and horizontal permeability. Actually. . oil compressibility and porosity. The main disadvantages of the long-distance displacement processes are outlined elsewhere5. Dietz theory was believed to be applicable mostly to thick formations.s). Ekrann found that the most unfavourable stratification occurs when the high permeability interval is located at the bottom. The last condition means that from a practical point of view. was developed5. In spite of being relatively inefficient. which aggravates the negative effects of the first two factors. in this project. but with a density very close to the oil. the higher the oil viscosity. the effect of gravity segregation on waterflood performance in light oil reservoirs was analytically expressed by Ekrann3. depending upon transmissibility. before it is produced. and pay thickness and permeability of the pay zone are relatively large. who showed that it becomes important for the high permeability formations. However. this is valid for a large range of water/oil mobility ratios (higher than 0. which is always undesirable in displacement processes. subsequently. these are still economically acceptable in situations with low oil viscosity (<10 mPa. This approach focussed on the novel technology of Toe-To-Heel Waterflooding (TTHW) process. From Ekrann’s paper. which is important mainly for heavy oil reservoirs6. which is the ratio between permeability and the product of oil viscosity. The TTHW process is a Toe-To-Heel (TTH) displacement process. while the most favourable one is when the high permeability interval is located at the top. especially in view of the widespread use of horizontal well technology in recent years. This region can be narrower or larger. due to a relatively large contrast in horizontal permeability of different layers. mobilized oil typically needs to travel several hundred metres to the production wells. as applied during the past 60 years. This crucial negative effect is eliminated in the SDOD processes.6. However. from the injection to the production well. The injectant could still flow long distances. the first alternative is to inject something similar to the water. the negative effect of gravity segregation is mainly felt when the stratification is not very pronounced. It can be classified as a short-distance oil SPE/PS-CIM/CHOA 78988 displacement (SDOD) process. most of the time oil flows along the stratification.The under-ride phenomenon is not a concern in achieving good vertical sweep for the case of the high permeability interval located at the top. while TTH displacement processes are pressure gradient and gravity controlled. generally. This approach is by far more practical. . TTH displacement processes include an active drive component. in other words. and SAGD and Vapex is that the last two processes are integrally gravity controlled processes.

Two positive displacement pumps regulate injection rates for oil and water. The potential for the application of waterflooding in a TTH configuration was explored only very recently8. TTH W aterflooding Process V ertical injector H orizontal producer Brine: Sp. upper injection. catalytic THAI (CAPRI). which is equivalent to the oil recovery for this simplified system. 1: Schematics of Toe-To-Heel Air Injection Process (after CMG) A schematic of TTHW process is provided in Figure 2.9. The Hele-Shaw cell is made of transparent plexiglass. There are auxiliary outlets. These tests showed that the TTHW concept has merit.1 mm apart.G rav. Procedure and Materials The experimental set-up is shown in Figure 3a. due to a slightly lower pressure drop towards the heel. there is a pressure drop along this linesink. In this paper these initial semi-quantitative tests results are presented. As can be seen. or cleaning of the model. A viscosity gradient. During 1996/1998 period.10. More than 70 laboratory tests and some simulation work have confirmed the concept of thermal TTH displacement is a sound concept8. its negative effect is largely mitigated as a consequence of two opposing effects: downwards flow due to gravity segregation and upwards flow due to the horizontal producer being a pressure sink. In this way a rectangular chamber (52cm*21. while the results of detailed simulations will be included in part lll. oil has the tendency to flow within the reservoir along . with its variant. 2: Schematics of Toe-to-Heel Waterflooding (TTHW) process. It is composed of two 2.SPE/PS-CIM/CHOA 78988 A TTH displacement process can be applied as a non-thermal recovery technology. The THAI process was conceived and confirmed as an effective displacement process for in situ combustion. does exist. So. representing a vertical cross section. the 3-D tests results will form part ll of this series. At any time. which are held together by a series of long bolts with a sealing gasket setting the plates 0. later on. As far as gravity segregation is concerned. Figure 3b shows details for the Hele-Shaw cell itself.01cm) is formed. more than 20 Hele-Shaw tests were carried out. as resulted from Hele Shaw model tests Experimental Set-up. The 0. which are used for vacuum. for in situ upgrading of the oil. A set of lights enables a video camera to continuously record images of water invaded zone. Another important feature is the abatement of heterogeneity effect due to the horizontal well acting as a line-sink. covering a considerable length. such as Toe-To-Heel Waterflooding (TTHW) or as a thermal technology such as Toe-To-Heel Air Injection (THAI).5 inch thick plexiglass plates 21.4cm*0. Fig. >1.7. The laboratory work so far has focussed mostly on THAI and catalytic THAI (CAPRI).0 Fig. 3-D tests conducted in a real porous medium proved that the concept was sound. However. due to high temperature in MOZ.4 cm by 52 cm.1 mm distance between plates is simulating a porous medium having a (calculated) permeability of 833 D. A schematic a THAI is shown in Figure 1. early in 19925. 3 the horizontal leg (this tendency was strongly influenced by oil-rock properties and horizontal well design.6. the oil flows only in a region immediately ahead of the displacement front. the ratio of this water invaded area to the total model area yields the vertical sweep efficiency. within the so-called mobile oil zone (MOZ).

that of horizontal well is 40. a partial anchoring of the water body took place in the toe region.5 cc. a heavy liquid (glycerol) with a density of 1220 kg/m3 and viscosity of 1500 mPa. with the horizontal section of horizontal well located at the top of the layer and the injection through . tests are considered semiquantitative and oil recovery is calculated based on water invaded area. The volume of the cell is 10. Instead. Because of this. being connected with the chamber of the cell by a series of ports placed every 1 cm (Figure 3b). one inch from the edge of the model.4=2. a non-thermal TTH process was tried. the cell shown in Figure 3b is used upside-down. using the upper perforations. the TTH concept was demonstrated for thermal processes. Fig. it was possible to achieve a stable TTH displacement. Oil collector Videocamera Vertical pilot hole VCR RUSKA PUMPS Fig. The vertical well is located at approx. the exit pressure was very close to the injection pressure and in some cases it was the atmospheric pressure. when gas injection rate was higher than the critical rate. while the injection rate was in the range 2. Preliminary Experiments These preliminary tests were designed to explore whether the TTH displacement is feasible when no viscosity gradient (due to temperature distribution) exists. it can be considered that the tests described mimic a thick layer. such that the horizontal well (HW) is located at upper part of “layer”. conducted at the same injection rate. Therefore. Later on. An injection rate of 320 ml/hr was used. and a high recovery of glycerol was achieved. and between its toe and the shoe of the vertical well there is a space of approx. Using the same lay out. the horizontal section of horizontal well is located at the bottom layer. No information on horizontal sweep efficiency was obtained from these tests. which are 5/16 inch in diameter. Therfore.184 g/cc. i.s was displaced by a light liquid. Also. the gas segregated and formed a gas cap at the upper part. used previously. are drilled directly into the plexiglass walls. a TTH displacement for a high-density contrast pair of liquids was investigated by displacing water by gas in the same model. 3b: Hele Shaw plexiglass cell The wells. while the injection is through the vertical well. between the length and the height of the model (“layer”). the displacement process was not stable.4 SPE/PS-CIM/CHOA 78988 WATER OIL vertical sweep efficiency for this simplified system.s. 3a: Laboratory set-up for TTHW investigation Five different oils. the water breakthrough may be masked and the production of oil can be delayed. Given the configuration of the system – the porous medium is mimicked by the space confined by the two closely spaced vertical plates – the oil recovery is equal to the In Figure 1.s to 12. conclusions from this section refer mainly to the vertical sweep efficiency. a basic displacement of water by water (same density and viscosity) was performed this time in the full set up for TTHW (Figure 6). with viscosities in a broad range. 10 mPa. plain water with a higher mobility.8 cc. downward displacement of water occurred.5 cc/hr to 320 cc/hr. Given the low volume of the cell compared to that of wells. they served as a basis of comparison for further tests and allowed us to understand the fundamental mechanisms. gas coning somewhere along the horizontal well took place. Finally. The tests were performed at room temperature and with an injection pressure in the range of 40-80 psi. The density contrast was in the range 0. Given the ratio 52/21.05 g/cc to 0.e. 10 cm.8 cc and that of the vertical well is 16. This time. the same configuration and the same injection rate. HW has a length of 34 cm. During TTHW tests. vertical injector-vertical producer test. Afterwards. it was demonstrated that when using a pair of liquids with low-density contrast. were used in these investigations. As seen in Figure 4. a direct channeling of the water did not occur. As seen in Figure 5. the TTHW process result was compared to a conventional.4.000 mPa. For each oil. The water was dyed with green food color to improve the visualization of invaded zone.

As a result. and although the front is not perfectly vertical. which increases in time. Given the ideal conditions of same density and viscosity. while some advancement also occurred at the bottom of layer. The advance of the injected water was In Figure 2.vertically downwards . The displacement front is loosely anchored to the horizontal section of horizontal well. When the water first enters the “porous medium” the oil flow dominates the whole process and the water tends to flow directly towards the toe.SPE/PS-CIM/CHOA 78988 5 the vertical well (all thickness perforated). displacement of water by gas in a TTH configuration. Results of the Main Tests The results are presented in Tables 1 to 5 in order of increasing oil viscosity. contrary to our expectations. This shows that gravity segregation plays an important role in these processes. it led to a recovery higher than that obtained for a more favorable case of same density and viscosity fluids. the drive force – horizontally. There are three forces dominating the advance of the high mobility injected water: the drive force – horizontally. water in a GAS GAS WATER Figure 5: High–density contrast displacement. and more than 60% of the resident water was displaced. In Figures 7 to 10 the shapes of water invaded zone are shown. water invaded zone for a real TTHW process was illustrated. and oil/water gravity segregation . In Figures 7-a to 7-b for a 10 mPa. and it may be viewed as a calibration test. the action of the horizontal section as a line-sink . the shape of water invaded zone at the water breakthrough for the conventional waterflood (Figure 7-a) is compared to the shape of water invaded zone at the water break-through for the TTHW process (Figure 7-b). As seen in Figure 6. displacement. Vertical injector Horizontal producer Figure 6: Displacement of water by green water in a TTH configuration. The above conditions of unity mobility ratio and equal density are ideal from the point of view of long–distance oil displacement (LDOD) processes. faster in the upper part of the layer. the oil/water segregation .is more and more active and causes the formation of a “nose” of the water body directed downwards. as more water has been injected. displacement front is curved as shown in Figure 6.vertically upwards. Although water viscosity is slightly lower and density of water is slightly higher than those for oil.s oil. and the action of the horizontal section as a line-sink . afterwards.vertically upwards. . There are only two forces dominating the advance of the water. Figure 4: Low–density contrast displacement of glycerol by green TTH configuration.vertically downwards. the water body advance is still relatively efficient from the point of view of sweep. in the TTH system. is typical for a TTHW process. as shown in Figure 2. which from the point of view of LDOD processes is very unfavorable. a direct channeling of the injected water through the horizontal leg did not take place. in general. the displacing liquid front profile is related only to the pressure drop along the horizontal leg of the horizontal producer. The shape of the water body.

s Oil density. kg/m Table 5: Bodo Oil 112 3 918 3 Brine-oil density contrast. these shapes are shown for TTHW at the beginning (Figure 8-a). mPa. for the 780 mPa. kg/m 168 Brine injection rate. but it is still possible for the water body to have horizontal and downwards advancement. mPa.s Oildensity. kg/m 49 Brine injection rate.5 Flood Type Well %Recovery %Recovery Types at brine at watering break-through out Conventional VI-VP - - TTHW VI-HP 14 32 .kg/m 12. kg/m 75 Brine injection rate. at the beginning of injection the fingering is quite extensive. Oil viscosity. kg/m 101 Brine injection rate. so that the final vertical sweep is relatively good.1 3 Flood Type Well %Recovery %Recovery Types at brine at watering break-through out Conventional VI-VP 23 27 TTHW VI-HP 24 58 Brine-oil density contrast. ml/h 20 Conventional Well %Recovery %Recovery Types at brine at watering break-through out 22 46 VI-VP TTHW Oil density. mPa.s oil. kg/m 1200 3 971 3 Legend: VI = Vertical injector VP = Vertical producer HP = Horizontal producer Brine-oil density contrast. mPa.000 3 988. ml/h 2. kg/m VI-HP 93 96 780 3 945 3 Brine-oil density contrast.s 851.5 Flood Type Well %Recovery %Recovery Types at brine at watering break-through out Conventional VI-VP 22 40 TTHW VI-HP 21 67 Table 2: Dunsmore Oil Oil viscosity. as seen in Figures 8-b. mPa.7 3 Brine-oil density contrast. As seen in Figure 8a. and at watering out (Figure 8-b).s Flood Type Table 1: Pembina Oil Oil density.s Oil density. ml/h 10 Well %Recovery %Recovery Types at brine at watering break-through out Conventional VI-VP 14 23 TTHW VI-HP 12 54 10 3 Flood Type Oil viscosity. kg/m 184 Brine injection rate.6 SPE/PS-CIM/CHOA 78988 In Figures 8-a to 8-b. kg/m Table 3: Court Oil Table 4: Lindberg Oil Oilviscosity. ml/h 2. ml/h 20 Oil viscosity.

kg/m 10 3 851. Shape of water invaded zone at water break-through . 7a: Pembina oil: Conventional waterflooding.s Oil density.7 3 168 Brine-oil density contrast. 8a: Court oil: TTH waterflooding. 7b: Pembina oil: TTH waterflooding. invaded zone at the watering out Shape of water Fig. kg/m Injection %Recovery %Recovery Rate at brine at watering ml/hr break-through out 60 78 84 20 93 96 Fig. Shape of water invaded zone at water break-through Fig.SPE/PS-CIM/CHOA 78988 7 Table 6: TTHW Process – Effect of Brine Injection Rate on Oil Recovery Light oil Pembina oil Oil viscosity. 8b: Court oil: TTH waterflooding. invaded zone at the start of water injection Shape of water Fig. Shape of water invaded zone at water break-through Fig. mPa. 9a: Lindberg oil: TTH waterflooding.

respectively. the distance between the vertical injector and the vertical producer was at least 4 times higher than the distance between the shoe of vertical injector and the toe of horizontal producer.s and 112 mPa. at water break-through and watering out are shown in Figures 9-a to 9-b. higher sweep . increased as follows: 46% to 96% for the 10 mPa. invaded zone at watering-out Shape of water The water invaded zones for the heaviest oils with viscosities of 1200 mPa. but not totally eliminated as witnessed by the difference in the vertical sweep efficiency for the most viscous oils (Figures 9 and 10) The main unswept zone is located above the horizontal section of horizontal well. This was verified for the case of 1200 mPa. At this time. between the vertical well shoe and the horizontal well toe and close to the vertical well shoe in the lower section. 27% to 58% for the 112 mPa.s.000 mPa. it is seen that for both oils. compared to conventional waterflood. This conclusion seems to indicate that for relatively light-heavy oils once onset of water fingering occurs. and 14% to 32% for the 12. smaller unswept zones are found at upper corner. Watering out was deemed when a water cut of 95% was attained.s oil and 2. Shape of water invaded zone at watering-out From Tables 1 to 5 and Figures 6 to 9.s oils. Fig. unlike conventional waterflooding.s and 12. the fingering is more pronounced close to the injection well compared to the region far away from the injection well.s oil.s viscosity oil. would leave some undisplaced oil close to the injection point. 10b: Bodo oil: TTH waterflooding. also.5 ml/hr for the 1200 mPa. for the same viscosity ratio. Also. There is a slight increase in oil recovery (both at water break-through and watering out) when a low injection rate is used. mainly for more viscous oils. There are important differences in the size of The direct effect of injection rate on oil recovery for the 10 mPa. This last finding reveals that TTHW.s viscosity oil. and 10-a to 10-b.s viscosity oil. such that the value of distance from the injection point to the outlet becomes unimportant. The unfavorable effect of water/oil mobility ratio was reduced.s oils. higher density contrasts will lead to high oil recovery. However. the mechanisms leading to this phenomenon are not understood. for which break-through oil recovery was much higher for TTHW process. While interpreting these results it should be noted that the injection rate was not the same for all the tests: it was 20 ml/hr for the 10 mPa. Fig. 10a: Bodo oil: TTH waterflooding.s and 14. An exception to this was observed during light oil tests (10 mPas viscosity oil).8 SPE/PS-CIM/CHOA 78988 these zones. the main finger advances extremely quickly. In fact. where the water zone becomes more compact.000 mPa. 10 ml/hr for the 780 mPa.s viscosity oil.s oil is shown in Table 6.000 mPa. the fingering is more accentuated for the heavier oil. Fig. 23% to 54% for the 780 mPa. invaded zone at water break-through Shape of water Oil recovery at watering out. 9b: Lindberg oil: TTH waterflooding. the following conclusions can be drawn: At water break-through oil recovery of the TTHW process was close to that of conventional waterflooding.

1993. better than that for conventional waterflooding.. the fact that the results were semi-quantitative. Because. Calgary.966. R. Coates. M. 5. 1974 3. (1993) 4.N. and capillary effects do not exist. Canada 11. using injection brines with the highest feasible salinity is recommended. Vol 40. and Ayasse. which mimicked a vertical section of a simulated porous medium. Such application would also impose a minimum limit on the pay thickness. the whole oil reservoir volume situated above the horizontal section of the producer will remain unswept. The Hele Shaw tests showed that in heavy oil pools. and on the other hand. in a TTHW process. 2.167.X. : "A Theoretical Approach to the Problem of Encroaching and Bypassing Edge Water. Dietz. T. R. 183-199. M: “Upgrading Athabasca Tar Sand Using Toe-To-Heel Air Injection (THAI)”. K. and Turta A T. S. May 6. Saghr.: The Reservoir Engineering Aspects of Waterflooding. it remained to be confirmed that the process has a sound foundation.5. Discussion of Results. Conclusions 1. and Turta A T. 10. Greaves. Turta. 2000.: “Toe-To-Heel Oil Displacement” Short Paper Presented at Canadian International Petroleum Conference. November 6-8. January 2. 2001. which is very low and can be associated with only very thick oil formations. where higher water density (due to higher salinity) leads to more water under-ride and harms performance. low injection rates are used and water/oil mobility ratio is not extremely unfavourable. compared to zones more remote. especially when the density contrast is relatively high (high brine salinity and/or low oil density). For this reason. At the end of a flood. the horizontal (areal) sweep efficiency was not determined. A. and this may force operators to locate the horizontal section as close to the overburden as possible. the zone around the injection well is less swept. the fingering phenomena are pronounced close to the injection well. These results will be presented in Part ll of this series of papers on TTHW. June 18. Calgary 7. June 12-14.: “Oilfield In-Situ Combustion Process” U. 83. The Toe-To-Heel Waterflooding (TTHW) process was investigated in a Hele Shaw laboratory model.626.T. 2.191. ratio of length to height of the model is approx.X. 2000. In Situ.G. A. This is totally opposite to conventional waterflooding. 2000. Craig. Fourth International Conference and Exposition on Horizontal Well Technology. Limitations The main limitation of Hele Shaw tests is that they give us only semi-quantitative results. L.246. and Zhao. Wetenschap (1953) Proc. November 6-8. Ayasse C. D.639.461. and Singhal. A. and Greaves. Xia. Turta. M. Ned. 2. . This constitutes a significant difference between TTHW and conventional waterflooding. T." Konikl. Patent No.: "Gravity and Vertical Sweep Efficiency".. F. Also. Canadian Patent 2. 2002. 6. Greaves. From this point of view the results are generally very optimistic.. they were conducted and confirmed the soundness of 9 the process. The oil recovery increases substantially. Also. C: “THAI – New Air Injection Technology for Heavy Oil Recovery and In-Situ Upgrading” Journal Of Canadian Petroleum Technology.: “Numerical Simulation of THAI Process” Canadian International Petroleum Conference. Sandrea.: “Overview of ShortDistance Oil Displacement Processes” Paper presented at SPE/PS . and Nielsen. B56.3. Moreover. 3-D tests in real porous media were therefore necessary for validation. Turta.S. Xia.SPE/PS-CIM/CHOA 78988 efficiency was obtained for 23% salinity case. R. 2. SPE Monograph.: “Toe-To-Heel Oil Recovery Process” USA Patent 6. A. No. Akad. June 4-8. 8. Gulf Publishing Company.176. Calgary. 200. August 8. as compared to the 3% salinity case.L. Canadian Patent No. injection rate. Ekrann.CIM International Conference on Horizontal Well Technology. March 2001. the permeability is extremely high. References 1. The semi-quantitative results of the investigations showed that the process achieves a good vertical sweep efficiency. this fingering disappears far from the injection well where water invaded zone becomes ‘compact’. Calgary. Later on. The tests showed that the position/tilting of displacement front is determined by the combined influence of contrast of density and viscosity for the displacing/displaced fluid. In a TTHW process. Dynamics of Petroleum Reservoirs Under Gas Injection.. 9. 17(2).4.T.1997. they showed that TTH displacement process applications lead to high oil rates from the very beginning (no waiting period). A.M. 2001. and the relative location of the vertical injector and horizontal section of producer. on the one hand. That this effect would also occur in a real porous medium is still to be demonstrated.