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Reservoir-Fluid Property

Correlatio.ns-State of the Art

W.D. McCaln Jr., SPE, Cawley, Gillespie & Assocs. lnc.
Summary. This paper presents correlations to determine reservoir-fluid properties from field data. The best available correlations
were selected by comparison with a data base of hundreds of reservoir-fluid s~dies of sampl~s representing ~ areas o~ the free world
involved in active petroleum exploitation from 1980 to 1986. Also, correlations of formation-water propertes are given.
Values of reservoir liquid and gas properties are often needed when
laboratory PVT data are not available. This paper shows how to
use normally available field data to estimate fluid properties.
While at Texas A&M U., 1 had access to a data base of hundreds
of reservoir-fluid studies provided by Core Laboratories Inc. The
geographical and geological origins of the reservoir samples had
been carefully removed from the data but the samples were lrnown
to represent ali areas of the free world in which petroleum exploitation was active during the first 6 years of the 1980's.
Ali reservoir-fluid property correlations available in the petroleum engineering literature were compared with this data base. This
paper gives the best correlations.
ldentlflcatlon of Rrvolr-Fluld Type
Surprisingly accurate "rules of thumb" are available 1 to identify
reservoir-fluid type from field data. When the initial producing GOR
is < 3 ,300 scf/STB, the fluid is a liquid at reservoir conditions.
Possible exceptions occur if the stock-tank liquid is colorless or
has a gravity higher than about 50 API.
Reservoir liquids are either black oils or volatile oils; the general material-balance equatons- work only for black oils. The behavior of volatile oils does not fit the assumptions inherent in the
derivation of the material-balance equations. Black oils are identified as having initial producing GOR's below 2,000 scf/STB and
deeply colored stock-tank oil with gravities below 45 API.
Reservoir gases are classified as retrograde gases (often called
condensate gases or gas condensare), wet gases, and dry gases.
Retrograde gases have initial producing GOR's > 3,300 scf/STB.
The few exceptions of oils that have ratios higher than this are identified as having deeply colored stock-tank liquids with gravities <
40 API. Retrograde behavior occurs for gases with initial producing GOR's of 150,000 scf/STB or higher; however, as a practica!
matter, gases with initial producing GOR's ;.::50,000 scf/STB can
be treated as wet gases.
The term wet gas is used for a gas that does not release condensate in the reservoir but does form hydrocarbon liquid at the surface. The term dry gas is used for a gas that does not form any
hydrocarbon liquid at the surface. In this context, the terms "wet"
and "dry" do not refer to water or water vapor, which is always
present to some extent.
Propertl of Reservolr Uqulds
The physical properties discussed next apply only to black oils. Engineering a volatile-oil reservoir requires a special laboratory study
not discussed here.
Solutioli GOR at Bubblepoint, R,b The initial producing GOR
provides a good estimate of solution GOR for use at pressures equal
to and above bubblepoint pressure. This will not be true if free gas
from a gas cap or another formation is produced with the oil. Field
data often exhbit a great deal of scatter; however, a trend of constant GOR usually can be discemed before reservoir pressure drops
below the bubblepoint.
Often the reported values of producing GOR do not include stocktank vent gas. In this case, the use of initial producing GOR for
'Now wlth S.A. Holdhch & Asaocs.
Copyright 1991 Soclety of Petroleum Englneers


solution GOR results in values that are low by 10% or more. The
stock-tank GOR can be estimated with3
log RST=A +A2 log -y0+A3 log "Ygsp+A4 log PsP
+As log Tsp,


where A1=0.3818, A2=-5.506, A3=2.902, A4=1.327, and

As= -0.7355. Eq. 1 should not be used if the separator temperature is > 140F.
Addition of the estimate of stock-tank GOR from Eq. 1 to the
separator GOR results in an estmate of solution GOR accurate to
within 3%.
Bubblepoint Pressure, p b. The bubblepoint pressure of the oil at
reservoir conditions can be estimated with4
Pb = 18.2(Cpb-1.4),


where cpb=<Rsl'Yg)83X 1Q(0.00091T-0.012S"(AP)


to an accuracy of 15 % . The specific gravity of the separator gas

can be used for -y8; however, R5 should include stock-tank vent
gas. The equations are valid to 325F.
A more accurate estmate of bubblepoint pressure can be obtained
if reservoir pressure is measured regularly. Plot reservoir pressure
and producing GOR vs. cumulative production. For a volumetric
solution-gas-drive reservoir, pressure will decline rapidly initially, then flatten when reservoir pressure drops below the oil bubblepoint pressure (the pressure at which the line changes slope).
The producing GOR will begin to increase shortly after bubblepoint
pressure is reached.
Solution GOR, R,. Eqs. 2 and 3 can be used to estmate solution
GOR for pressures below the bubblepoint. Enter any pressure below bubblepoint in place of P in Eq. 2 and calculate the corresponding value of solution GOR with Eq. 3. The results should
be within 15% of measured values.
If a field-derived bubblepoint pressure has been obtained from
pressure measurements as described above, the accuracy of the estimates of solution GOR can be improved. s Start by creating a table of pressures and solution GOR's. Subtract the field-derived
bubblepoint pressure from the bubblepoint pressure calculated with
Eqs. 2 and 3 to obtain a "delta pressure." Subtract this "delta pressure" from ali pressures in the R5 vs. p table. This procedure
works very well for pressures near the bubblepoint. 1t is less accurate at low pressures.
Oil FVF, 80 The oil FVF for use at pressures equal to or below
bubblepoint can be estimated with+
Bob =0.9159+ 12(10-S)CBob 1.2,
where CBob =R,(-y gl-y0)0.s

+ 1.25T


The equations can be used for any pressure equal to or below the
bubblepoint by inserting the corresponding value of solution GOR
estimated as discussed above. The resulting FVF value will be within
5 % of laboratory-measured values if accurate values of solution
GOR are used. If solution GOR's are obtained with Eqs. 2 and 3,
the accuracy of the resulting FVF values will be sorne unlrnown
combination ofthe 15% accuracy ofEqs. 2 and 3 and the 5% accuracy of Eqs. 4 and 5. Do not use at temperatures above 325F.
SPE Reservoir Engineering, May 1991

At pressures above bubblepoint pressure, the oil FVF is calculated with




where FVF at the bubblepoint is estimated as discussed above. Estimation of the coefficient of isothennal compressibility of oil, eO,
is discussed later.
Oil Density at Reservoir Conditions, PoR Eq. 7 may be used to
calculare> the density of the oil in the reservoir at bubblepoint pressure (and below) from estimated values of B0 and Rs.
PoR =(psTO +0.01351R/y g)IB0,


where p oR is the density of the reservoir liquid at the pressure and

temperature at which B0 and R, were estimated. A weighted average of separator and stock-tank-gas specific gravities should be used
for 'Yg; however, the use of separator gas gravity gives adequate
results. The accuracy of this .calculation should be sorne unlcnown
combination of the accuracy of the estimates of B0 and Rs; however, in practice, the calculated density is within 5% oflaboratorymeasured values.
Density of reservoir oil at pressures above the bubblepoint can
be calculated with
Po =p01, exp[c0(p-p1,)]


Coefflcient of lsothermal Compressibility of Oil, c0 The coefficient of isothennal compressibility of ol, often called oil compressibility, is defined for pressures above the bubblepoint as
Co = -(llV)(iW/op)r,


c0= -(l!B0)(0B0)/op)r,


Or C0 =(1fp0)(op0/op)r

At pressures below the bubblepoint, oil compressibility is definedf



=-;J(~ ) -B/;s )J



wherea =-1,433.0, A2=5.0, A3=17.2, A4=-1,180.0, As=

12.61, and A6 = 105.
Values of oil compressibility calculated with Eq. 11 are generally low, by as muchas 50% at high pressures. Accuracy is improved
at pressures near the bubblepoint. The data set used to develop this
equation included pressures as high as 9,500 psig; however, the
author did not give a temperature range. 8
At pressures below the bubblepoint, 9

ln(p)+l.115 ln(T)+0.533 lnhAPI)

+0.184 ln(Rs1,)


The results are accurate to within 10% at pressures above 500 psia.
Below 500 psia, the accuracy is within 20%. Ifthe bubblepoint pressure is known, the accuracy of estimates of oil compressibility at
pressures below bubblepoint can be improved by using?
ln(c0)= -7.573-1.450 ln(p)-0.383 ln(p1,)+ 1.402 ln(T)
+0.256 ln('YAP1)+0.449ln(Rs1,)


Eqs. 12 and 13 are valid to 330F and 5,300 psia.

Oil Viscosity, p.0 Estimation of oil viscosity at pressures below
the bubblepoint is a two-step procedure. First, the viscosity of the
oil without dissolved gas (dead oil), P.oD is estimated at reservoir
temperature 10:
log log(p.oD+ 1)= 1.8653-0.025086-y API-0.5644 log T.


Eq. 14 is based ondata with rangesof5 to 58 APiand 60to 175F.

SPE Reservoir Engineering, May 1991


P.o =A.oDB,

where A=l0.715(Rs+lOO)-O.S!S


and B=5.44(Rs + 150)-0.338


Eqs. 15 through 17 were derived with data to295F and5,250psig.

Oil viscosity at pressures above the bubblepoint is estimated by
first calculating viscosity at the bubblepoint with Eqs. 14 through
17 from the solution GOR at the bubblepoint and then adjusting
viscosity to higher pressures with 7


P.o =p.01,(plp1,)8,



exp(C3 +C4p),


and C1 =2.6, C2 =1.187, C3 = -11.513, and C4 =-8.98x 10-s.

Eqs. 18 and 19 were developed from a data base with pressures
to 9 ,500 psig; the applicable temperatures were not given. 8
lt appears that the relationships of oil viscosity to other properties of the oil are too complicated to be explained by the limited
field data normally available. Thus, the values of oil viscosity calculated with Eqs. 14 through 19 should be considered to be "orderof-magnitude'' estimates only.
Propertl of Reaervolr Gasea
Properties of dry gases will be considered first. Toen, the calculations necessary for estimating properties of reservoir wet gases will
be discussed. Retrograde gases will not be considered because a
special laboratory report is required for these gases.
Compressibility Equation of State. The equation of state most
often used by petroleum engineers is


The Standing-Katz12 correlation of z factors has stood the test

of time. Their graphical correlation may be represented by 13,14
z= 1 +(A 1 +A2/Tpr +A3/Tpr3 +A4/Tpr 4 +As!Tpr5)Ppr

+(A6 +A7/Tpr+Ag/Tpr2)Ppr2

At pressures above the bubblepoint, 7

co=(A +A2Rs+A3T+A4-yg+As'YAP1)IA6P,

Toen, the effect of solution GOR corresponding to the pressure of

interest is taken into account with 11


+A1o(l +A 11Ppr2)(ppr2/Tpr3)exp(-A
and Ppr=0.21[pprl(ZTpr)J,



where A 1 =0.3265, A2 = -1.0700, A3 = -0.5339, A4 =0.01569,

As= -0.05165, A6 =0.5415, A1 = -0. 7361, Ag =0.1844, A9 =

0.1056, A10=0.6134, and A11 =0.7210. Eq. 21 represents the

Standing-Katz correlation to within 1 % for 0.2<Ppr< 15 and
0.1<Tpr<3.0 and to within 3% for 15<Ppr<30.
The pseudoreduced properties are defined as


and Ppr=PIPpc


where the pseudocritical properties may be calculated with15

Ppc =756.8-131.0-y g -3.6-y g2

and Tpc= 169.2+349.5-y g -14.0-y




Eqs. 21 through 25 produce z factors that are well within 2% of

experimental for temperatures to 360F, pressures to 12,500 psia,
and gas specific gravities to 1.6.
If the gas composition is known, gas specific gravity for use in
Eqs. 24 and 25 should be calculated with
'Y g=Ma/Mair =Ma/29,

where Ma= EYjMj


This will improve accuracy over direct calculation of the pseudocritical properties with composton.P
When H2S and C02 are present, the pseudocritical properties
are adjusted by 16


and Ppc =


Tpc +YH2s0-YH2s)E


where17 E=l20(f~~!d+ f~1d)+(fi2s-f~25)


Eqs. 28 through 30 result in z factors within 5 % of experimental 16

for C02 concentrations to 55 mol% and H2S conditions to 74
mol% at temperatures to 300F and pressures to 7 ,000 psia.
z-factor values are not greatly affected by the presence of nitrogen. z-factor increases by about 1 % over the values calculated with
Eqs. 21 and 22 for each 5 mol% of nitrogen in the gas.s
Toe z-factor values calculated as described above are about as
accurate as can be measured in the laboratory. This is true even
for wet gases and retrograde gases with specific gravities as high
as 1.6.
Dry Gases. Dry gases are easy to deal with because no liquid condenses from the gas as it moves from the reservoir to the surface.
Thus, the specific gravity ofthe surface gas can be used in correlations to determine the properties of the gas in the reservoir.
When the gas is associated and produced with a black oil, it may
be assumed to be a dry gas with specific gravity equal to the specific gravity of the gas from the primary separator.
Gas FVF. The FVF of a dry gas is defined as


If standard conditions are taken to be 14.65 psia and 60F,

88 =0.0282(zT/p) =0.00502(zT/p). .


Toe equations are exact, and the calculated values of gas FVF are
directly related to the accuracy of the values of z factor used.
Coefficienl o/ lsothermal Compressibilily o/ Gas. Toe coefficient of isothermal compressibility of gas is defined as
c8 = -(llV)(iW/Jp)7

or Cg=(llBg)(JBglJp)r


Eqs. 33 and 20 can be combined and placed on a pseudoreduced



Jpp, Tpr
Eq. 34 can be combinedt'' with the definition of pseudoreduced
gas density,



where the z factor of the gas at the critical point is assumed to be

0.27, to arrive at
0.27 [
cp,= Ppr - z2 Tp, 1 +(JJp,lz)(Jz/Jpp,)rp,


An expression for (Jz/Jpp,) can be derived- from Eq. 21:

(JzlJpp,)rp, =A 1 +A2/Tp, +A31Tp,3 +A4/Tp,

+As!Tp,s +2pp,(A6 +A7/Tp,+AglT,,,2)



2 Ppr 4 )exp( -A 11Ppr 2) , (37)

where the values of the constants are given with Eq. 21.
lsothenns ofthe z factor plotted vs. pseudoreduced pressure have
rather sharp minima at low temperatures. Eq. 21 follows the shape
ofthese isothenns rather well. However, the slopes ofthe isothenns
calculated with Eq. 37 are not particularly accurate near these mni
ma, where the slope changes sharply from negative to positive.
Thus, Eqs. 36 and 37 should not be used at Tp, < 1.4 for
0.4<p ,<3.0. Toe accuracy ofthese equations is unknown; however, ~ results should be suitable for engineering calculations.



where A =


209.2+ 19.26Ma+T

and C=2.447-0.2224B


Toe results of Eqs. 38 through 41 agree with the limited published data of gas viscosity to within 2 % at low pressure and to
within 4 % at high pressure when the specific gravity of the gas
is < 1.0. Toe equations are less accurate for gases of higher specific gravities, usually giving low estimates by up to 20% for retrograde gases with specific gravities over 1.5.
Wet Gases. Toe key to the estimation of the properties of a wet
gas is that the composition of the reservoir gas is not the same as
the composition of the surface gas. Hydrocarbon liquid condenses
from the reservoir gas as it moves from reservoir conditions to surface conditions. Toe surface gas and surface liquid must be recombined by calculation to detennine the specc gravity of the reservoir
gas. Correlations given above can be used once the specific gravity. of the reservoir gas is known.
Specific Gravily o/ Wet Gas. Wet gases are processed through
two or more stages of separation at the surface. Unfortunately, the
quantity and specific gravity ofthe stock-tank gas are rarely known.
The specific gravity of a reservoir wet gas can be estimated when
only the properties of the gas from the primary separator are
'Y gR =

Rsp +Veq

. . .. , . , . , . . . . . . . . .. . (42)

Toe equivalent volume, Veq is the volume of stock-tank gas and

second separator gas, ifpresent, plus the volume in standard cubic
feet that would be occupied by a barrel of stock-tank liquid if it
were gas. Toe additional gas produced, Gpa, is related to the mass
of gas produced from the stock tank and the second separator, if
For three stages of separation,
Veq =Ao +A 1 (p5p)A2 (-y5p)A3 (-yAP1)A4 (Tsp1)A5(Tsn)A6'


whereA0=535.916, A1 =2.62310, A2 =0.793183, A3 =4.66120,

A4 = 1.20940, As= -0.849115, and A6 =0.269869, and
Gpa=A 1 (Psp1 -14.65)A2('Ysp1)A3(-y
AP1)A4 (Tsp1)As(Tsn)A6,


where x =2.99222, A2 =0.970497, A3 =6.80491, A4 = l.07916,

As= -1.19605, and A6 =0.553669.
For two stages of separation,
Veq=Ao+.A (p5p)A2('Y5p)A3(-y


whereA0=635.530, A 1 =0.361821,A2=1.05435, A3 =5.08305,

A4=1.58124, A5=-0.791301, and
Gpa =A(Psp -14.65)A2('Ysp)A3(-yAPI)A4(Tsp)As, .....

-5pp, 4A9(A7/Tp,+A8/Tp,2)

+ 2A JOPpr (1 + A 11Ppr 2 -A

Gas Viscosily. Gas viscosity may be estimated with 19


where A 1 = 1.45993, A2 = 1.33940, A3 =7 .09434, A4 = 1.14356,

and A5=-0.934460.
Values of specific gravity of reservoir gas calculated with Eq.
42 and the appropriate pair of Eqs. 43 and 44 or Eqs. 45 and 46
will be within 2 % of laboratory-detennined values. This accuracy
degenerates to about 6% when the total nonhydrocarbon content
of the gas is between 5 and 25 mol% . Toe equations are not recommended when total nonhydrocarbon content of the gas exceeds
25 mol%. Toe results are independent of reservoir temperature and
pressure. Reservoir gases with specific gravities between 0.8 and
1.55 were used in the development of the equation.
FVF o/ Wet Gas. Eqs. 31 and 32 apply only to a dry gas. Toe
FVF of a wet gas is usually defined as the volume of reservoir gas
SPE Reservoir Engineering, May 1991



Symbol Definition
g mol solid
1,000 g pure water
g mol solid
1,000 ml brine
eq wt solid
1,000 ml brine
meq solid
milliequivalents per litar Cmeq/l
1,000 ml brine
weight percent solids
g solid
100 g brine
parts per million
g solid
106 g brine
milligrams per liter
g solid
106 ml brine
grains per gallon
grains solid
Cgr/gal = 17.1 X Cmg/l 17.1 XPw X Cppm,
where p w is in g/cm 3 at standard
gal brine

'Adapted from Jordan. J.R. and Campball, F.L.: We// Logg/ng /-Rock Proparties, Borehole Envlronmant, Mud, and
Temperatura Lor,g/ng, Monograph Serias, SPE, Richardson, TX (1985) 9, 38.

required to produce 1 bbl of stock-tank liquid. The units are either

standard cubic feet of reservoir gas per stock-tank barrel or barreis of reservoir gas at reservoir conditions per stock-tank barrel.
The sum of the primary separator gas and Veq is the standard
cubic feet of reservoir gas required to produce 1 bbl of stock-tank
Vw8=Rsp1 +Veq
This can be converted to reservoir conditions,


resulting in

Bwg=0.00502(Rsp + Veq)7/p,


Values from this correlation agree with the lirnited published experimental data to within 2 % . The correlation is valid throughout
the full range of solids contents, temperatures to 260F, and pressures to 5,000 psia. An increase in solids content causes a slight
increase in '1VwT and a slight decrease in '1Vwp that are offsetting
to within l % .

Density of Fonnation Water, Pw. The density of fonnation water

at standard conditions may be calculated with5

l.60074x 10-3S2.


where standard conditions of 14.65 psia and 60F were used.

Eq. 48 will give results within about 6% of laboratory measurement for gases with nonhydrocarbon content < 5 % . The accuracy
degenerates badly for higher nonhydrocarbon content.

The results are as accurate as laboratory measurement throughout the full range of solids contents. Density at reservoir conditions is calculated by dividing density at standard conditions by FVF
for the pressure and temperature of interest.

Propertlea of Reaervolr Water

Most of the water correlations presented here require a knowledge
of the solids content of the brine of interest. Solids content can be
easily measured in the laboratory, or it can be determined-! from
measurement of the resistivity of the brine.

Solution Gas/Water Ratio ofFonnation Water, Rsw The solution gas/water ratio of pure water may be calculated with 5

Solids Content. Ali formation waters contain dissolved solids,

primarily NaCl. The quantity and distribution ofthe ions are different in every formation water. Solids contents have been reported
from as little as 200 ppm to saturation, whichjust exceeds 300,000
Solids contents are reported in various sets of units. Table 1 gives
the relationships between these units.
Bubblepoint Pressure of Formation Water, Pb The bubblepoint
pressure of formation water is the same as the bubblepoint pressure of the coexisting oil. If the water is in contact with gas, its
bubblepoint pressure is equal to initial reservoir pressure. Both of
the above are the result of thermodynamic equilibrium in the reservoir at discovery.
FVF of Formation Water, Bw. The FVF of brine may be calculated withS
Bw=(l +'1Vwp)(l +.,ffwr),

SPE Reservoir Engineering, May 1991




B= 1.01021(10-2)-7.44241(10-5)7+3.05553(10-7)72


and C= -(l0-7)[9.02505-0.1302377+8.53425(10-4)72
-2.34122(10-6)73 +2.37049(10-9)74].


These equations fit the original graphical correlaton- to within

5% at pressures from 1,000 to 10,000 psia and temperatures from
100 to 340F. Do not use at pressures below 1,000 psia.
Eq. 57 gives a salinity adjustment factorS that is multiplied by
the result of Eq. 53 to give the solution gas/water ratio of formation water.

(Rsw)pure water

J = -0.0840655S7-0.285854.


Eq. 57 fits the existing graphical correlation23 to within 3% for

salinities up to 30% and temperature from 70 to 250F.


Coefflcient oflsothermal Compressibllity ofFonnation Water,

cw. At pressures above the bubblepoint, water compressibility is
defined as

and '1V""= - l.95301(10-9)p7- l.72834(10-13)p27


where A=8.15839-6.12265(10-2)T+



where '1Vwr= -1.0001(10-2)+ 1.33391(10-4)7+





= (1/V w)(}Vwf}p)r,


cw= -(llBw)(JBwlop)r,


or Cw=(llpw)(Opwlop)r


Eq. 59 may be used to estmate values of water compressibility.24



where S=salinity in mg/L.

Eq. 59 is valid only for temperatures between 200 and 270F,
pressures of 1,000 to 20,000 psia, and salinitiesup to 200,000 mg/L.
Osif24 gave no estmate of accuracy. A graphic correlation-t is
available for use at lower temperatures and pressures.
At pressures below the bubblepoint, water compressibility is
calculated 26 as

c;w)/ ::

Cw = :w



Toe first term on the right side of Eq. 60 is related to water compressibility at pressures above the bubblepoint and can be estimated with Eq. 59. Toe derivative in the second term on the right side
of Eq. 60 can be estimated with5


whereB and Care from Eqs. 55 and 56. Toe result ofEq. 61 should
be multiplied by the salinity adjustment factor of Eq. 57. Values
of FVF of formation water for use in the second term are estimated as described above, and FVF of gas is estimated with a gas specific gravity of 0.63.
Toe resulting estmate of water compressibility is of unknown
accuracy. It should be considered to be 'order of magnitude'' only.

Viscosityof Fonnation Water, w. Toe viscosity of formation

water at reservoir temperature and atmospheric pressure can be estimated wth>

wl =AT-B,


where A=109.574-8.40564S+0.313314S2 +8.72213(1Q-3)S3



and B= l .12166-2.63951(10-2)S+6. 79461(10-4)S2

+5.47119(1Q-5)S3 - l.55586(I0-6)S4


Eq. 62 fits the existing graphical correlaton-? to within 5% at temperatures between 100 and 400F and salinities to 26%.
Water viscosity at 1 atm can be adjusted to reservoir pressure
wlwl =0.9994+4.0295X lQ-5p+3.1062X 1Q-9p2 .... (65)
Eq. 65 fits data28 at 86 to 167F and pressures below 10,000 psia
to within 4%. At pressures between 10,000 and 15,000 psia, the
fit is to within 7 % .

MoistureContent ofNatural Gas. Toe dewpoint water-vapor content of natural gas in equilibrium with liquid water may be calculated with 29


where A =pv

8 20


and log B=-3083.87(1/T)+6.69449


Eqs. 66 through 68 give results that are as accurate as moisture

content can be measured (about 5%) at pressures to 10,000 psia
and temperatures to 460F.
Dissolved solids in the water reduce the partial pressure of the
water, thereby reducing the water content of the gas. Moisture content from Eq. 66 should be multiplied by the salinity-adjustment
factor- given in Eq. 69:

---=l-4.920(1Q-3)S-l.7672(10-4)S2, .....
wpure water



where S=salinity, wt%. Eq. 69 agrees with the existing graphical

correlation-? to within 1 % .
Toe above correlations were developed for dry-gas systems containing no nonhydrocarbon components. The presence of heavier
hydrocarbons in wet gases or retrograde gases will increase the water
content by as muchas 10% at 1,000 psia and 20% at 10,000 psia.
Natural gas that contains substantial amounts of C02 and/or H2S
will contain more water vapor. 30 Although no data are available,
the increase is probably on the order of 5 % . Substantial amounts
of nitrogen or helium will lower the moisture content. 31 Limited
data are available; the decrease is probably 5 to 10%.

Hydrate Formation. Hydrocarbon gas and liquid water will combine to form solids called gas hydrates at temperatures above the
temperature at which water freezes. Eq. 70 can be used to estmate
the temperature at which hydrates will form32:
Th = 1/[2.77077(10-3)-2. 78224(10-3)(ln 'Y 8)-5.64929(10-4)
(In p)- l.29859(10-3)(ln 'Y 8)2 + I.40712(10-3)(ln 'Y 8)(ln p)
+ I.78574(10-4)(ln p)2 + 1.13028(10-3)(ln 'Y 8)3
+5.97282(1Q-4)(ln -y8)2(Jn p)-2.32792(10-4)(ln -y8)(ln p)2
-2.68408(lQ-5)(ln p)3 +4.66106(10-3)(ln 'Y 8)4
+5.55424(1Q-4)(In -y8)3(ln p)- l.47278(I0-5)(ln -y8)2(ln p)2
+ l.39381(10-5)(ln 'Y 8)(ln p)3 + I.48850(10-6)(ln p)4].
The estmate of hydrate-forming temperature could be in error by
5F or more. Do not use Eq. 70 at temperatures above 62F, pressures above 1,500 psia, or gas specific gravities above O. 9.
Toe presence of H2S and/or C02 in the gas will cause an increase in hydrate-forming temperatures, but data are too limited
to quantify this.
Toe presence of dissolved solids in the water will decrease the
temperature at which hydrates form. Toe decrease can be calculated with5


where A=2.20919-l0.5746-y8+ 12.1601-y/,


B= -0.106056+0.722692-y8-0.85093-y/,


and C=0.00347221-0.0165564-y



Eq. 71 agrees with the existing data30 exactly when the results are
rounded to the nearest whole degree Fahrenheit. Eqs. 71 through
74 are based on gas specific gravities < O. 68 and salinities < 20%.
Inhibitor is often added to the water in contact with gas to reduce
the hydrate-forming temperature. Toe temperature reduction can
be calculated wifu33,34
ATh =2,335w/100M-Mw.


Toe results ofEq. 75 are well within the scatter ofthe experimental data.
Toe presence of liquid hydrocarbons with the gas and liquid water
will decrease hydrate-forming temperature. 34 Data are limited, and
the temperature decrease has not been quantified.
A,B,C = coefficients
B8 = FVF of dry gas, res ft3/scf or RB/scf
B0 = ol FVF, RB/STB
Bw = water FVF, RB/STB
Bwg = FVF of wet gas, RB/STB
c8 = coefficient of isothermal compressibility of gas,
c0 = coefficient of isothermal compressibility of ol,
psi "!
cp, = pseudoreduced coefficient of isothermal
cw = coefficient of isothermal compressibility of
water, psi 1
SPE Reservoir Engineering, May 1991

= surn of mole fraction of C02 and H2S in Eq.

fH2s = mole fraction of H2S in Eq. 30
Gpa = additional gas produced, Eqs. 42 through 44,
scf/STB times specific gravity
m = mass, lbm mol
M = molecular weight of solute in Eq. 75, lbm/lbm
M0 = apparent molecular weight, lbm/lbm mol
Mm = apparent molecular weight of air, lbm/lbm mol
p = pressure, psia
Pb = bubblepoint pressure, psia
Ppc = pseudocritical pressure, psia
P,C = pseudocritical pressure adjusted for acid-gas
content, psia
ppr = pseudoreduced pressure
Pv,HzO = vapor pressure of pure water at temperature of
interest, psia
R = universal gas constant, 10.732 (psia-ft3)/(lbm
mol- R), or producing GOR
R, = solution GOR, scf/STB
Rsp = producing GOR from prmary separator,
RsT = producing GOR from stock tank, scf/STB
Rsw = solublity of gas in water, scf/STB
S = salinty, wt% solids or mg/L in Eq. 59
T = temperature, F or R in Eqs. 12, 13, 20, 23,
32, 39, 40, 48, and 68
Th = hydrate-formation temperature, F
llTh = decrease in hydrate-formation temperature, F
T. e = pseudocritical temperature, R
= pseudocritical temperature adjusted for acid-gas
content, R
Tpr = pseudoreduced temperature
V= volume, ft3
Veq = equivalent volurne, scf/STB
Vw = volume of water, ft3
Vwg = volume of reservoir wet gas, ft3
ll V "P = change in liquid volume during pressure
reduction in Bw correlation
ll V wT = change in liquid volume during temperature
reduction in Bw correlation
w = weight percent solute in Eq. 75
W = moisture content of gas, lbm/MMscf
Wbrine = moisture content of gas in contact with brine,
Wpure water = moisture content of gas in contact with pure
water, lbm/MMscf
y = composition of gas, mole fraction
z = gas compressibility factor, pV!mRT
'Y API = stock-tank ol gravity, API
'Y 8 = gas specific gravity
'Y O = stock-tank ol specific gravity
'YSPI = specific gravity of gas from primary separator
E = pseudocritical adjustment factor for acid-gas
content, R
8 = gas viscosity, cp
0 = ol viscosity, cp
P.oD = ol viscosity at 1-atm pressure and reservoir
temperature, cp
P.w = water viscosity, cp
P.wl = water viscosity at 1-atm pressure and reservoir
temperature, cp
p = density, g/cm3 in Eq. 38 or lbm/ft3
Po = ol density, lbmfft3
PoR = reservoir ol density at reservoir conditions,
Ppr = pseudoreduced density

Psro = stock-tank ol density at standard conditions,

Pw = water density, lbmfft3



SPE Rcservoir Enginccring, May 1991




+ H2S
= air
= at bubblepoint pressure at reservoir temperature
= hydrogen sulfide
= component j
= reservoir conditions
= standard conditions
= separator
= primary separator
= second-stage separator
= stock tank
= stock-tank ol
= C02

I am grateful to Core Laboratories Inc. and, in particular, to Phl
Moses for providing the data used to evaluate these correlations.
Also, 1 thank Cawley, Gillespie & Assocs. lnc. for permission to
publish this paper.
l. Moses, P.L.: "Enginccring Applications of Phase Behavior of Crude
Oil and Condensate Systems," JPT (July 1986) 715-23.
2. Schilthuis, R.J.: "Active Oil and Reservoir Energy," Trans., AIME
(1936) 118, 33-52.
3. Rollins, J.B., McCain, W.D. Jr., and Creeger, J.T.: "Estimation of
Solution GOR ofBlack Oils," JPT(Jan. 1990) 92-94; Trans., AIME,


4. Standing, M.B.: Volumetricami Phase Behavior of Oil Fietd Hydrocarbon Systems, SPE, Richardson, TX (1977) 124.
5. McCain, W.D. Jr.: The Properties of Petroleum Fluids, second edition, PennWell Books, Tulsa (1989) 120, 175, 214, 318, 322, 513,
6. Martin, J.C.: "Simplified Equations of Flow in Gas Orive Reservoirs
and the Theoretical Foundation of Multiphase Pressure Buildup Analyses," Trans., AIME (1959) 216, 309-11.
7. Vazquez, M. and Beggs, H.D.: "Correlations for Fluid Physical Property Prediction," JPT(June 1980) 968-70.
8. Vazquez, A.M.E.: "Correlation for Fluid Physical Prediction," MS
thesis, U. of Tulsa, Tulsa, OK (1976).
9. McCain, W.D. Jr., Rollins, J.a:, and Villena, A.J.: "The Coefficient
oflsothermal Compressibility ofBlack Oils at Pressures Below the Bubblepoint," SPEFE (Sept. 1988) 659-62; Trans., AIME, 285.
10. Ng, J.T.H. and Egbogah, E.O.: "On Improved Temperature-Viscosity
Correlation for Crode Oil Systems," paper CIM 83-34-32 presented
at the 1983 Petroleum Soc. of CIM Annual Technical Meeting, Banff,
May 10-13.
11. Beggs, H.D. and Robinson, J.R.: "Estimating the Viscosity of Crode
Oil Systems," JPT (Sept. 1975) 1140-41.
12. Standing, M.B. and Katz, D.L.: "Density of Natural Gases," Trans.,
AIME (1942) 146, 140-49.
13. Takas, G.: "Comparisons Made for Computer z-Factor Calculations,"
Oil &: Gas J. (Dec. 20, 1976) 64-66.
14. Dranchuk, P.M. and Abou-Kassem, J .H.: "Calculations of z-Factors
for Natural Gases Using Equations of State," J. Cdn. Pet. Tech. (JulySept. 1975) 34-36.
15. Sutton, R.P.: "Compressibility Factors for High-Molecular-Weight
Reservoir Gases," paper SPE 14265 presented at the 1985 SPE Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition, Las Vegas, Sept. 22-25.
16. Wichert, E. and Aziz, K.: "Calculate z's for Sour Gases," Hydrocarbon Processing (May 1972) 119-22.
17. Wichert, E. and Aziz, K.: "Compressibility Factor of Sour Natural
Gases," Cdn. J. Chem. Eng. (April 1971) 267-73.
18. Mattar, L., Brar, G.S., and Aziz, K.: "Compressibility of Natural
Gases," J. Cdn. Pet. Tech. (Oct.-Dec. 1975) 14, 77-80.
19. Lee, A.L., Gonzales, M.H., and Eakin, B.E.: "The Viscosity ofNatural
Gases," JPT (Aug. 1966) 997-1000; Trans., AIME (1966) 234.
20. Gold, D.K., McCain, W.D .. Jr., and Jennings, J.W.: "An Improved
Method for the Determination of the Reservoir-Gas Specific Gravity
for Retrograde Gases," JPT(July 1989) 747-52; Trans., AIME, 287.
21. Log Imerpretation Charts, Schlumberger Well Services, Houston ( 1986)



Wllllam D. McCaln Jr. Is an executlve
consultant wlth S.A. Holdltch & Assocs.
In College Statlon, TIC. He prevlouslywas
a petroleum englneer wlth Cawley,
Glllesple & Assocs. lnc. In Fort Worth
and taught petroleum englneerlng at
Texas A&M U. and Mlsslsslppl State U.
He holds a es degree from Mlsslsslppl
State U. and MS and PhD degrees from
Georgia lnst. of Technology. McCaln was
a member of the 1986-89 Career
Guldance Commlttee and the 1972-75
Textbook Commlttee. He was 1972 Mlsslsslppl Sectlon chalr
man and a member of the Educatlon and Accredltatloneom
mlttee from 1967 to 1971, chalrlng lt In 1970.

SI Metrlc Converslon Factora

aun x 1.013 250* E+05
bbl X 1.589 873
psi X 6.894 757
scf/bbl x 1.801 175
Converslon factor is exact.

g/cm '


std m3/m3


Original SPE manuscript received for review June 15, 1988. Paper (SPE 18571) accepted
for publlcation Feb. 22, 1989. Revised manuscript received March 17, 1989.


22. Culberson, O.L. and McKetta, J.J. Jr.: "Phase Equilibria in

Hydrocarbon-WaterSystemsm-Solubility of Methane in Water at Pressures to 10,000 psia," Trans., AIME (1951) 192, 223-26.
23. McKetta, J.J. and Wehe, A.H.: "Hydrocarbon-Water and Formation
Water Correlations," Petroleum Production Handbook, T.C. Frick and,
R.W. Taylor (eds.), SPE, Richardson, TX (1962) n, 22-1-22-26.
24. Osif, T .L.: "The Effects of Salt, Gas, Temperature, and Pressure on
the Compressibility of Water," SPERE (Feb. 1988) 175-81.
25. Dodson, C.R. and Standing, M.B.: "Pressure, Volume, Temperature
and Solubility Relations for Natural Gas-Water Mixtures," Drill. &
Prod. Prac., API, Dallas (1944) 173-79.
26. Ramey, H.J. Jr.: "Rapid Methods for Estimating Reservoir Compressibilities," JPT (April 1964) 447-54; Trans., AIME, 231.
27. Matthews, C.S. and Russell, D.G.: Pressure Buildup and Flow Tests
in Wells, Monograph Series, SPE, Richardson, TX (1967) l.
28. Collins, A.G.: "Properties of Produced Waters," Petroleum Engineering Handbook, H.B. Bradley (ed.), SPE, Richardson, TX (1987) 24-17.
29. Bukacek, R.F.: "Equilibrium Moisture Contact ofNatural Gases," research bull. IGT, Chicago (1955) 8, 2,11.
30. Katz, D.L. et al.: Handbook of Natural Gas Engineering, McGrawHill Book Co. Inc., New York City (1959) 198-200.
31. Deaton, W .M. and Frost, E.M. Jr.: Gas Hydrates and Their Relation
to the Operation ofNatural Gas Pipelines, Monograph Series, USBM,
Washington, DC (1946) 8.
32. Kobayashi, R., Kyoo, Y.S., and Sloan, E.D.: "Phase Behavior of
Water/Hydrocarbon Systems," Petroleum Engineering Handbook, H.B.
Bradley (ed.), SPE, Richardson, TX (1987) 25-1-25-28.
33. Hammerschmidt, E.G.: "Formation of Gas Hydrates in Natural Gas
Transmission Lines," lnd. & Eng. Chem. (1934) 26, 851-55.
34. Scauzillo, F.R.: "Inhibiting Hydrate Formations in Hydrocarbon
Gases," Chem. Eng. Prog. (Aug. 1956) 52, 324-28.

SPE Reservoir Engineering, May 1991

Discussion of Reservoir-Fluid Property

Correlations-State of the Art
W.R. Hayworth, SPE, Divrsified Operating Corp.
In ''Reservoir-Fluid Property Correlations-State of the Art" (May
1991 SPERE, Pages 266-72), McCain states that "Black oils are
identified as having initial producing GOR's below 2,000 scf/STB
and deeply colored stock-tank oil with gravities below 45 API."
Unfortunately, defining reservoir fluid type by these parameters
alone can result in misinterpretation of the reservoir-tluid behavior.
For example, Field X, a Cretaceous "D" sand reservoir in the
Denver basin, has an initial stock-tank gravity of 40 API, an initial producing GOR of 600 scf/STB, and a reservoir temperature
of 230F. According to the author's classification of black oils,
this field would fall well within the black-oil designation. Reservoir performance, however, has shown that the fluid does not behave as a black oil.
During primary depletion, the producing GOR increased to more
than 13,000 scf/STB. Stock-tank oil gravity coincidentallyincreased
from 40 to 60 API.
Evidently, this reservoir does not fit black-oil assumptions. Blackoil material-balance calculations have proved unrealistic.

McCain's definition of a black oil does not consider reservoir

temperature or composition. For the example cited, reservoir temperature and a high concentration of intermediate components have
undoubtedly had a significant impact on reservoir-tluid behavior.
Earlier authors t ,2 considered reservoir temperature and compositions as important parameters in classifying reservoir fluid types.
l. Craft, B.C. andHawkins, M.F.:AppliedPetroleumReservoirEngineering, Prentice-Hall Inc., Englewood Cliffs, NJ (1959) 186.
2. Moses, P.L.: "Engineering Applications of Pbase Behavior of Crude
Oil and Condensate Systems," JPT (July 1986) 715-23.

SI Metrlc Converalon Fctora

API 141.5/(131.5+ API)
F (F ~32)/1.8
scf/bbl X 1.801 175

= g/cm3
std m3/m3

(SPE 23583)

Author's Reply to Discussion of Reservolr-Fluid

Property Correlations-State of the Art
Wllllam D. McCaln Jr., SPE, S.A. Holditch & Assocs. lnc.
Hayworth may have found an example reservoir fluid that does not
fit the "rules of thumb" for determining reservoir fluid type.1,2
However, he does not give the color of the stock-tank liquid. Stocktank oil color is the third rule of thumb and is useful in confirming
fluid type.
Composition was not considered because the paper- was written
to show how to usefield data to estimate reservoir-fluid properties
(see the first sentence of the Summary or the second sentence of
the Introduction). Extensive information in the use of field and
laboratory data to distinguish between black and volatile oils is
available elsewhere. 3


l. Moses, P.L.: "Engineering Applications of Phase Behavior of Crude
Oil and Condensate Systems," JPT (July 1986) 715-23.
2. McCain, W.D. Jr.: "Reservoir-Fluid Property Correlations-State of
the Art," SPERE (May 1991) 266-72.
3. McCain, W .D. Jr.: Te Properties of Petroleum Fluids, second edition,
PennWell Books, Tulsa (1989) 149-53.
(SPE 23594)


SPE Reservoir Engineering, November 1991