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Sweep Efficiency by Miscible Displacement in a Five-Spot

J. L. MAHAFFEY SHELL DEVELOPMENT CO.


MEMBER AIME HOUSTON, TEX.
MONSANTO RESEARCH CORP.
W.M. RUTHERFORD
MIAMISBURG, OHIO
C. S. MATTHEWS SHELL DEVELOPMENT CO.
MEMBER AIME HOUSTON, TEX.

ABSTRACT scaled model studies reported herein, an attempt


was made to scale diffusion.
This paper gives results of an experimental Model studies of miscible displacements in
study of the sweep efficiency of a miscible dis- which molecular diffusion predominates are per-
placement in a five-spot. The study was carried mi tted by controlling the parallel plate spacing
out in a parallel-plate glass model in which effects which reduces convective mixing to arbitrarily
of diffusion were scaled at or near the molecular small levels. To decide how this scaling relates
diffusion level. to any particular field displacement necessitates
The experiments show that very early break- an estimation of diffusion effects for the natural
.through (25 to 35 per cent of pore volume (PV) rock being considered and conditions under which
injected) may be expected in miscible floods displacement will be conducted. The approach
because of the unfavorable viscosity ratio. However normally taken is to extrapolate data obtained from
after 1 PV of displacing fluid is injected, the stable miscible displacements performed in the
sweep rises to a reasonable value (50 to 60 per laboratory, such as those presented by Brigham
cent). Photographs show that small slugs of less et al. 3 The validity with which such an extrapo-
than 10 per cent of PV tend to dissipate before lation can be applied to an unstable flow system
breakthrough. A minimum slug size of 15 per cent has yet to be established. If this approach is
of PV would appear to be necessary even in a accepted, a family of oil recovery curves can be
relatively homogeneous formation. generated for a single viscosity ratio based on
Presence of a slug whose viscosity is inter- Brigham's observation that the magnitude of the
mediate between that of oil and gas increases dispersion coefficient is dependent, among other
the sweep efficiency of the oil-gas system. In things, upon specific rock properties. Objective
a typical system the sweep at breakthrough rose of our test was to define the lower limit of this
from 26 to 37 per cent of PV for a 25 per cent range by presenting the case where dispersion
slug. The increase in sweep brought about by effects were reduced to the molecular diffusion
use of a large slug could well pay for the extra level in both the transverse and longitudinal
de ferment cost of the additional slug material. directions.
The scaling of diffusion effects can be handled
INTRODUCTION in two-dimensional systems by the use of narrow-
gap, parallel-plate models. In parallel-plate models
Most miscible displacement processes involve
the Taylor diffusion coefficient for convective
the displacement of oil with fluids of much lower
mixing in the direction of flow at low flow rates
viscosity and density. The displacement process
is given by (following Taylor 4 ):
at these adverse viscosity and density ratios is
dominated by instability phenomena, i. e., viscous D _ h2 v 2
fingers and gravity tongues. These phenomena . . . . (1)
t -105D'
ha ve highly adverse effects on oil recovery.
Although a number of laboratory studies have been where h is the plate spacing and D is the molecular
made to determine the effect of adverse viscosity
diffusion coefficient. Clearly, convective mixing
ratios on five-spot sweep patterns,1,2 the scaling
can be reduced to arbitrarily small levels by
of diffusion effects is uncertain. In the series of
manipulating the gap spacing h. This was the
method used in these studies.
Original manuscript received in Society of Petroleum Engineers
office July 1, 1965. Revised manuscript of SPE 1233 received
Nov. 29, 1965. Paper was presented at SPE Annual Fall Meeting MODELS
held in Denver, Colo., Oct. 3-6, 1965.

lReferences given at end of paper. The first model constructed in the laboratory in

MARCH,1966 13
accordance with this idea was a 12-in. square line is Lm/y'2tbm, where Lm/y'2 is the distance
model of a completely developed five-spot pattern. from injector to producer, and tbm is the model
Spacing between the pyrex glass plates was 0.0047 breakthrough time. If this value is substituted for
in. At this spacing the effective diffusion co- v:
efficient in the direction of flow (for a molecular
diffusion coefficient of 2 x 10-5 cm 2 / sec) was
slightly lower for most flow rates than that observed . . . . . . . . . (3)
for 200-230 mesh beads (Fig. O. However, the
effective transverse diffusion coefficient in the
parallel-plate system is equal to the molecular For similarity we want:
diffusion coefficient, and this coefficient is much
less than the effective transverse diffusion co- De 4n = Dtl
, . . . . . . . . . . . . . (4)
efficient in the usual bead pack experiment.* L2 m L21
To obtain lower effective diffusion coefficients
in the direction of flow, a second model was where t is time, L is the length of side of five-
prepared with a smaller gap of 0.0015 in. At this spot and subscripts m and f stand for model and
spacing, convective mixing effects (Tay lor diffusion) field, respectively. By combining Eqs. 3 and 4
should be a factor of 10 less than at the spacing of an approximate relationship between model time
the previous model. The effective diffusion co- and field time IS obtained:
efficient is approximately equal to the molecular
diffusion coefficient in this model for rates less
than 0.02 cm/sec (Fig. 1). Several experiments (5)
were conducted at rates less than this.
In scaling this model it is assumed that the
effective diffusion coefficient in the direction of Length X is scaled according to:
flow De is the sum of the Taylor diffusion co-
efficient Dt and the molecular diffusion coefficient XI LI
D: -- -L" ........................... . (6)
Xm m

h2 v2
De = D + 1050 . . . (2) According to Eq. 4:

The velocity v and effective diffusion coefficient ( De) = Lm (D) . . . . . . . . . . . (7)


De will vary in the parallel-plate model with both v m LI v I
time and position. Since we are trying to achieve
low values of De in this model, De is computed This representation of the scaling equation
along streamlines where v is the largest - then suggests a relationship between finger size in the
at all other points De will be less. A maximum model and finger size in the field. It was observed
value for v will be obtained along the breakthrough in the model displacement that the size, number
streamline. A characteristic velocity along this and distribution of viscous fingers seemed to be
a function of the De/v parameter. At low De/v
*Results from Ref. 7 indicate that in bead packs the values there were a few coarse fingers and as the
transverse coefficient is also lower than the longitudinal
coefficient. However, both coefficients are considerably
De/v value was increased for the same viscosity
larger than the molecular diffusion coefficient in most ratio more fingers were produced, but they were
bead pack experiments.
thinner and very well defined. This aspect is
further discussed in the Results section.
The objective in this work is to scale a model
so that a field miscible displacement is represented
:
in which diffusion is at the molecular diffusion
~ level in both longitudinal and transverse directions.
PARALLEL nATE
h.004
~FOR 0" 2
IHCH
x 10- 5 )
To achieve this condition in the model, the second
o
term in Eq. 2 must be reduced to a very low value.
In some experiments L and v' were chosen so as
/
/ to make De ~ the molecular diffusion constant D
200-230 illES .. 8E.OS~/i:m'n over the entire model, including the highest velocity
points along the breakthrough streamline. In this
.... 12 m,n
case the scaling is correct. In other experiments
the second term in Eq. 2 was important, and the
scaling is only approximate.
811tAxrHROUGH
64
T,,,! (COIIH!" TO CORN!R ~OR MODEL $HOwH),m,"
52 , .. A graph of the parameter De/V, which apparently
"
vILoc,rT (~) . " .... / .."
controlled finger size, is shown in Fig. 2. To make
D e ~ D and achieve correct scaling, it is necessary
FIG. 1 - EFFECTIVE DIFFUSION COEFFICIENT IN to operate at a low enough velocity at each plate
DIRECTION OF FLOW FOR LABORATORY RESULTS.
spacing to be on the heavy line (Fig. 2). In the
74 SOCIETY OF PETROLEUM ENGINEERS JOURNAL
and production at the other represent a symmetry
element of one quarter of a completely developed
five-spot pattern (Fig. l). Data obtained with
injection at one comer well and production at the
center well represent a symmetry element of one
quarter of an inverted five-spot of Area A2 in a
bounded reservoir of Area 4A 2. The effects of
this boundary are believed to be small during times
of interest in the model studies, and this second
model will therefore be referred to simply as a
PARA~~El PLATES
model of an inverted five-spot pilot. Both types
'''C ..
BR(AMT .. ROUG" r""E,"""uTES
n a OOt~
of experiments were conducted on the 0.0047-in.
20 '6 8
oooo40L,,_ _~~~_ _L-~~~~~c-r::-:--~~-~-'-.--~~~ model, but only the completely developed pattern
V[LOC,Ty(.l,crn/uc
was studied in the 0.0015-in. case.
FIG. 2 - VALUES OF Defv.

0.0015-in. model, velocities less than 0.02 cm/sec RESULTS


satisfy this requirement within 10 per cent. For Results will first be compared for the 0.0047-
the 0.0047-in. model, the velocity should be less and 0.0015-in, models. Table 2 shows recovery
than about 0.006 ern/sec. at breakthrough and at 1 and 2 PV of injection for
Also plotted (Fig. 2) are values of De/v used both models as a function of viscosity ratio. At
in various experiments for constant model lengths. unit viscosity ratio there is a five- per cent
As can be seen, none of the experiments in the difference in breakthrough recovery between the
0.0047-in. model was slow enough to give ideal two models. This difference is probably the result
scaling. Four experiments in the 0.0015-in. model of irregularities in the plate spacing of the 0.0015-
were slow enough. Thus, a comparison can be in. model. Frontal configurations (Fig. 4) suggest
made between truly scaled and approximately scaled that plate spacing is somewhat smaller than
experiments. It should be noted that the experi- average along the edges of the model. Deviations
ments cover a wide range in values of De/v. in breakthrough recovery at the other viscosity
In the model experiments, displacements with ratios are also probably results of nonuniformity.
colored fluids were carried out as a function of Comparison of postbreakthrough results indicates
viscosity ratio and velocity (Table 1). Production that the 0.0015-in. model results also tend to be
histories were obtained by photometric analysis low by several per cent after breakthrough.
of produced fluids. The photometric analysis Results obtained at the viscosity ratio of 39.4,
system consisted of a light source and a photocell. where both models gave about the same sweep at
The effluent fluid from the experiment passed breakthrough, tend to support the argument that
through a square cross section lucite tube placed the 0.OOI5-in. model was slightly smaller along
between source and detector. By calibration it was the edges. At this viscosity ratio, the flow will
possible to determine the percentage of displaced tend to be mainly in the center of the model along
(clear) and displacing (colored) fluid in the effluent. the line between injector and producer. Thus,
Corrections were made for lag in time between it should make little difference whether the spacing
production at the well and measurement at the is smaller at the edges. Subsequent to breakthrough,
detector. In some cases, incomplete mixing of at 2Vp of injection (as the edges began to be swept)
clear and colored fluid at the production well led the O.0047-in. model again gave a better sweep.
to errors in measurement at the photometer. Although it is unfortunate that plate spacing was
Correction was made for this by photographing the uneven in the O.OOI5-in. model, it is believed that
fronts, cutting out selected fronts and using these the results are still of considerable comparative
to adjust the photometric areal sweep data to give value if an allowance of a few per cen t for the
correct areas swept. Photometric analysis of edge effect is made. Furthermore, it is believed
produced fluids was less satisfactory in the that these plates served their main purpose -
0.0015-in. model than in the 0.0047-in. model to show that spacing in the O.0047-in. model was
because the volume of fluid involved was much close enough to reduce the effects of diffusion to
smaller. the proper level.
Data obtained with injection at one corner well With the above discussion as background we
can examine Table 3, which lists the more important
TABLE 1 - FLUID PROPERTIES (AT 70F) experiments conducted and, like Table 2, gives

Ratio TABLE 2 - COMPARISON OF TWO MODELS


Viscosity Density Viscosity of Substance
Per Cent Average Recovery for Two Models at:
(cp) (gm/ee) Vi seos ity of Heptane
--- Viscosity
Breakthrough

Ratio 0.0015-in. 0.0047-in. O.OOl5--in. O.0047-in.


Drake Oil No.6 15.87 0.836 39.4 - -- ---
Peneteek 0.802 12.5 1 64 69 82 85 85 98
5.033
3.3 40 42 66 72 80 85
Soltrol 130 1.334 0.747 3.31 12.5 28 33 57 61 67 74
Heptane 0.403 0.682 1 39.4 26 25 52 49 56 61

MARCH,1966 75
breakthrougn sweep results. One item of interest fluid into the flow stream along the displacement
is tne fact tnat breakthrough sweep efficiencies front . Thi s flow stream converges at the prime
for the developed five-spot were never greater streamline fonning the di ffu se breakthrough spike
tnan 82 per Cent even at extremely favorable (Fig. 3a). Potentiometric and mathematical models
viscosity ratios. Habermann I obtained the same do not consider diffusion effects and would indicate
results by miscible displacement in porous bead a higher sweep efficiency at breakthrough. This
packs. Sucn breakthrough results are much lower explanation is supported by the results of Habennann
than those given by numerical or potentiometric for miscible displacemen tS in which the viscosity
model methods. Breakthrough III the fa vorable ratio is favorab le.
viscosity case (AI '" 0.08) takes place along an Small-scale fingering was observed for all
extremely snarp spike along the streamline adverse viscosity ratio disp lacements. In fast
connecting injector and producer (Fig. 3a). Such displacements (less than 10minutes to breakthrough)
a spike would have been suppressed by methods finger strucrure was extremely detailed, even at
used in potentiometric studies or in numerical, the relatively mild viscosity ratio of 3.3 (Fig.
finite-difference methods. However, the front 3b). At a viscosity ratio of 39.4, the fine structure
behind tne spike is very uniform. For practical of some of the instabilities in the O.OOIS-in . model
purposes it could be said that an efficient sweep was cha racterized by wave lengths on the order
is occurring at low viscosity ratio. This is shown of lmm or less (Fig. 3c). Finger strucrure in very
by the fact that about 98 per cent of the area is slow displacements (breakthrough time on the
swept at I PV of injection at Al == 0.08. order of one hour) was much coarser.
At a viscosity ratio of 1, the average break- Although finger size was affected by flow rate,
through sweep efficiency found in this study in production behavior was only slightly affected
the 0.0047-in . model is about two per cent less (Table 3). The variation of area swept with rate
than the theoretical value of 71.8 per cent. The ( 2 per cent) is about the same order as the
breakthrougn sweep at a viscosity ratio of 4 (Fig. repeatability of anyone experiment.
5) is also several per cent less than the value The fact that only small changes in sweep
obtained in Ref. 5 by numerical methods. However, paccern are caused by very large changes in rate,
in both cases there is excellent agreement between
the two methods for the areas swept at I and at
2 PY throughput. This would indicate that the
0.0047-in. parallel-plate model may give slightly
low values for breakthrough sweep efficiency but
shou ld gi ve correct va lues shortly after breakthrough.


The cause of early breakthrough observed for the
very favorable viscosity ratio of 0.08 is believed
to be quite different . When driving fluid is more
viscous than fluid being displaced in a five -spot
pattern configuration, significant velocities tangen-
tial to the displacement from are established in
the fluid being displaced. Since the fluids are
miscible, diffusion causes transport of displacing

F IG. 3b - FRONT BREAKTHROUGH (3.3 VISCOSITY


RATIO, 39 PER CENT SWEEP)


,.

FIG. 3a _ FRONT AT BREAKTHROUGH (0.08 VISCOS- FIG. 3c _ FRONT PRIOR TO BREAKTHROUGH (39.4
ITY RATIO, 80 PER CENT SWEEP). VISCOSITY RATIO, 19 PER CENT SWEEP).

SOC I ETY OF PETROLEUM E.sG I NEEkS JOURN,\I.


"
which lead to large changes in effective diffusion flood progresses (Figs. 3b and 3c). Finally, one
coefficient in the direction of flow, indicates that of the subdivisions moves rapidly ahead of the
this coefficient is not the most -important factor others and breaks through into the production well.
in determining sweep and production behavior at The original fingers have been subdi vided so
breakthrough and at larger values of time. Some much by this time that it apparently makes little
preliminary work has indicated that the effective difference whether there were originally 3 or 15
diffusion coefficient in the direction of flow does fingers. The overriding factor of greater importance
determine the number of fingers formed initially. appears to be the viscosity ra tio, which governs
The initially formed fingers, which range in the instability of the fingers.
number from 3 to 15, subdivide many times as the Results obtained In the O.0047-in. parallel-

TABLE 3 - SUMMARY OF EXPERIMENTS

Viscosity
Ratio Area Swept
Size Breakthrough Breakthrough At
Oil Oil Slug
Experiment Time Sweep
No. Type* Gas Slug (% Vp ) (min) (% V ) 1 Vp 2 Vp Remarks
p

1 55 .08 24.3 82 98 99+


2 55 .3 23.3 78 90 99
3 55 1.0 19.4 69 85 98
4 55 3.3 6.4 43 71 84
5 55 3.3 24.6 43 72 85
SA 55 12.5 5.2 34 59 74
6 55 12.5 18.1 32 62 73
7 55 39.4 6.1 25 47 59
8 55 39.4 14.7 24 50 62
9 15 .08 12.9 128 190
10 15 .3 11.9 123 173
11 15 1.0 6.4 104 156
12 15 3.3 10.2 69 92 132
13 15 12.5 3.3 46 82 112
14 15 39.4 30.5 42 76 98
15 5-15 39.4 11.9 2.16 Presence of slug with viscosity be-
16 515 39.4 11.9 9.06 43 tween that of oil and gas increases
17 5-15 39.4 11.9 25.5 46 sweep. (d. Expts. 14& 18). Also larger
18 5-15 39.4 3.2 9.06 45 slug gives larger sweep (Expts. 16,
19 5-15 39.4 3.2 25.6 57 17, 18 & 19).
20 5-15 1.0 39.4 9.06 42 Presence of slug with viscosity less
21 5-15 1.0 39.4 25.5 37 than oil and gas decreases sweep (d.
22 5-15 1.0 12.5 8.92 50 Expts. 11 & 22).
23 5-15 1.0 12.5 25.4 41 Larger slug decreases sweep (Expts.
20, 21, 22, 23).
24 55 1.0 12.4 64 82 95
25 55 3.3 2.0 39 66 81
26 55 3.3 7.4 40 64 78
27 55 3.3 20.8 42 66 79
28 55 3.3 72.3 38 66
29 55 12.5 2.5 28 58 68
30 55 12.5 7.8 28 56 66
31 55 12.5 59.0 27 57
32 55 39.4 2.6 23 53 57
33 55 39.4 10.5 25 50 55
34 55 39.4 24.2 25 53 56
35 5-55 12.5 3.8 5.0 32 Presence of slug with viscosity be-
36 5-55 12.5 3.8 15.2 40 tween that of oil and gas increases
37 5-55 12.5 3.8 25.2 40 sweep. (d. Expts. 29 & 35; also 32 &
38 5-55 39.4 11.9 5.0 26 38). Larger slug gives larger sweep
39 5-55 39.4 11.9 14.9 32 (Expts. 35 to 37; 38 to 40).
40 5-55 39.4 11.9 24.9 37
Experiments 1 to 23 were taken in the 0.0047-in. model.
Experiments 24 to 40 were taken in the 0.0015-in. model. ____

':: ::::: :::~::;:'::::~::d:;':;;;'; ::::~e: :.::~::'oF~'~ ]::,::.1- ..1


p .--.
5 means slug experiment; slug size is given in per cent PV enclosed by the four production wells (area enclosed by the
dashed I ines in sketches above).

MARCH. 1966 77
pla te model are given in Figs. 5 and 6. Fig. 5 about 10 to 100, they fall substantially below those
shows that fo r a completely deve loped five-spot obtained fro m porenliomeuic measurements. 5 As
the breakthrough sweep efficiency is only 33 per previously mentioned, in the range of mobilities
cenl at a viscosity ratio of 10. However, at 1 PV between 0.08 and 4 the areas swept at 1 and at 2
of injec tion, the a rea swept has risen to a more PV th roughput agreed fairly well for this study and
respectable value of 60 per cenc. Low values at for potentiometric studies , in spite of the disagree-
breakthrough are cau sed by fingers of the type men t in breakthrough results. In the mobility range
shown in Fig. 3b. o f 4 to 10 , potentiometric and parallel-plate model
For the inverted fiv e-spot pilot sweep efficiencies s weep results begin to disag ree at 1 PV throughput.
are much higher (F ig. 6). In fact, sweep efficiencies In the range from 10 to 100 th ey disagree more. The
based on the area of the five-spot become greater reason for the disagreemen t, o f course, is that
than 100 per cent. This resu lt makes it clear that parall el -plate resu lts show fin ge rs . whe reas
extrapolating inverted five-spot pilot results to potentiometric results do not . For predicting the
fuJlscale perfonnances must be done with care. performance of miscib le floods, where mobi liry
Sweep efficiencies at breakthrough for the generally lies in the range 10 to 100, results from
0.0047-in. model are compared in Fig . 7 with results parallel -plate or porous medium mode l studies shou ld
of other investigators. Measured breakthrough be used rather than the potentiom etric results. The
recovertes agree rather well with those of latter may still be the bes t for water floods because
Habe rmann 1 and Lacey et (l1 .2 for porous bead of the effects o f imbibition, which will tend to
sheets , but in the range o f mobility r atios~ from suppress fingering.
Comparisons of our resu lts with those of other
*In this . eport vl s co s tty ratio 18 ...... Uy .de,.,.ed to alnce investigators at pos tbteakduough times are given
vlscosUy ratio and mobility ratio are the .ame for ml.dbl.
dlspl.c""",nla. How eve ., In Immi .clble dl.placement.. mobility
tio I. the m.. aninsful parameter .nd will b., u.ed In ... f",.. nc:e.
10 Ih.,o ,y 0. to e1<Pe""",nu with lmmJ.dbl .. fluid

F IG. 3f _ FRONT AT BREAKTHROUGH ( I S PER CENT


SLUG, 40 PER CENT SWEEP; 12. 5 VISCOSITY RATIO
[OIL-G AS]. 3.8 [OIL-SLUG]).
F IG. 3d _INVER TE D F IVE-SPOT PILOT; FRONT PAST
BREAKTHROUG H (9 PER CENT SL UG, 48 PER CENT
SWEEP OF DASHED AREA ' 39.4 VISCOSITY RATIO
t
[OIL-GAS], 3.2 OIL-SLUG]).

~ _ _ . 3 \7 _ __

---- ,,.
,_---.109
,,

FIG. 3e_INVERTED FIVE-SPOT PILOT; FRONT PAST


BREAKTHROUGH (25 PER CENT SLUG, 70 PER CENT
SWEEP OF DASHED AREA; 1.0 VISCOSITY RATIO [OI L - FIG. 4 - FRONT TRACINGS, O.OO I SIN. MODEL (1.0
GAS], 12.5 [O IL -S L UG]). VISCOSITY RAT IO).

S OCIETY OF PETflO I. EVM ENG I NEEfl S J OURN AL


"
in Figs. 8 and 9. Fig. 8 gives results for a viscosity attempt to answer this question (Table 3).
ratio of 40. Because of the influence oJ the effective The first set of experiments (I5 to 23) were
diffusion coefficients, our results show a lower performed in the inverted pilot five-spot. In Experi-
sweep at postbreakthrough times than do results of ments 15, 16 and 17 viscosity ratios used for the
others. Similar results are shown for a viscosity oil-slug and oil-gas were similar to those which
ratio of 12.5 (Fig. 9). might be encountered in the field when LPG is used
as a slug. In the two-per cent case the slug was
SLUG SIZE dissipated long before breakthrough. The nine-per
cent slug appeared to function to about breakthrough
One of the most important questions 10 miscible but was dissipated shortly after (Fig. 3d). The 25-
flooding is "how much slug should use?" A per cent slug functioned up to 1.4 PV's of injected
number of slug experiments were carried out in an fluid. Experiments 18 and 19 gave similar results.
1001~~~~====~===--------------------------
Experiments 20 to 23 indicated that with a slug of
LPG or enriched gas followed by water there is
efficient displacement of slug by water but still
~ 80
W
u
inefficient fingering of slug (Fig. 3e). One conclu-
a:: sion would be that use of water will not reduce
W
"-.60 0.6 volumetric slug requirements. However, the
I-
"- efficient sweep given the slug by the water would

o
W
PRODUCER
~ 40 point to high slug recovery.
~ Slug experiments 35 to 40 in the 0.0015-in. model
W
a::
~ 20
were carried out for the completely developed
five-spot. These experiments confirmed results just
INJECTOR discussed for the O.0047-in. model. A photograph of
O~~--------~~--------~----------~
0.1 1.0 10 100
MOBiliTY RATIO 100,---------,,-------------------------------,

HABERMANN (REF. I)
FIG. 5 __ DISPLACEMENT BEHAVIOR FOR A DEVEL- I-
~ 80
OPED FIVE-SPOT (DATA FROM 0.0047-IN. MODEL). u
..,
0:

60 ,, LACEY ET AL.( REF. 2)

..,.
300r---------------------------------------~ CL._
I-

~ 40
THIS INVESTIGATION (0.0047-INCH MODEL)
~250
o ..,
"-
I-(J) ~ 20
i::i I 200
u'"
a:: 0~---------L--------~2L---------~3~------~4
wu..
"-0 PORE VOLUMES INJECTED
,.: ~ 150
"-w
wa:: FIG. 8 -- COMPARISON OF FIVE-SPOT POSTBREAK-
~~ THROUGH DATA (40 VISCOSITY RATIO).
~ z 100
i;!o 1.00,------------------------------------------,
~o
w
LACEY ET AL.(REF. 2)
~ 50
m

o 0.1 1.0 10 100 O.BO HABERMANN (REF. I)


MOBILITY RATIO

FIG. 6 -- DISPLACEMENT BEHAVIOR FOR AN IN- o


VERTED FIVE-SPOT PILOT (DATA FROM 0.0047-IN. w
u .0015-INCH MODEL
MODEL). ::>
00.60
o
a:
~tOO 11.
..,z
U
- - - HABERMANN (REF I) (/)
W
..,
0: - - PRATS T AL (REF.5)
o LACEY T Al.(REF.21
~
::>
Q.~ 80 - - - DYES (REF. 6) .J
~ 0.40
'"0'::>"
....- THIS INVESTIGATION
(O.0047-INCH MODEll
0:
~ 60
.
..,"
.
a:

..
I- 40

..,.
I-

~ 20
....,
..
a:
0 ,L-+------------.~----------~,O~-----------U,OO 1.0 2.0 3.0
MOBILITY RATIO PORE VOLUMES INJECTED

FIG. 7 COMPARISON OF FIVE - SPOT BREAK- FIG. 9 -- COMPARISON OF FIVE-SPOT POSTBREAK-


THROUGH DATA. THROUGH DATA (12.5 VISCOSITY RATIO).

MARCH, 1966 79
the configuration of the 15-per cent slug case in the of slug size, five- spot pattern configuration and
0.0015-in. model is shown in Fig. 3f. viscosity ratio in the miscible displacement process
These experiments indicate only what would where diffusion is scaled to the minimum level for
happen in a thin, flat, homogeneous reservoir in flow through natural rock.
which the effective diffusion coefficient is near the Experiments with small slugs show that these
molecular diffusion level. Gravity layover would are rapidly dissipated at the miscible front. A
tend to increase slug requirements, as would the minimum slug of about 15 per cent of PV appears
presence of thin, very permeable layers. Use of to be necessary for thin homogeneous reservoirs of
methods of reservoir analysis for prediction of the type studied herein, where no gravity layover
behavior of nonhomogeneous reservoirs will be occurs and where there are no highly permeable
required to apply results of this study to actual layers within the strata. Results with slugs also
reservoirs. indicate that the presence of a slug whose viscosity
is intermediate between that of oil and water will
EFFECT OF A SLUG ON SWEEP EFFICIENCY
increase sweep efficiency. This increase may well
One important point brought out by these be enough to pay for the extra deferment cost of the
experiments is that the presence of a slug whose additional solvent.
viscosity is intermediate between that of the oil
and the gas will increase sweep efficiency. Thus, NOMENCLATURE
the 42-per cent sweep efficiency at breakthrough
D molecular diffusion coefficient, cm 2/ sec
(obtained in Experiment 14 for the inverted five-spot
pilot) was raised to 45 per cent in Experiment 18 De effective diffusion coefficient, cm 2/ sec
by addition of a 9-per cent slug of intermediate Dt Taylor diffusion coefficient, cm 2/ sec
viscosity material. As the amount of the slug was h spacing between parallel plates, cm
increased to 25 per cent (Experiment 19), the sweep L characteristic length, side of five-spot, cm
at breakthrough rose to 57 per cent. A similar
M mobility ratio, (k 1/1L1)/(k 2 /1l2)
increase from 26 to 37 per cent sweep at break-
Vp pore volume
through was shown by Experiments 38 to 40 for the
fully developed five-spot. time, sec
This increase in sweep efficiency due to the slug tb time of breakthrough, sec
will be of considerable importance in deciding upon v velocity, cm/sec
the optimum slug size from an economic standpoint. X length, cm
Extra oil recovered by adding more slug could well
pay for the increased deferment cost of the larger SUBSCRIPTS
slug. A detailed economic evaluation will be
required for any particular case. Sweep efficiencies
f field
reported herein should aid in the determination of m model
optimum slug size.
In some field cases, water or mixtures of water REFERENCES
and gas are used as a displacing agent for the
1. Habermann, B.: "The Efficiency of Miscible Displace-
miscible slug. Experiments 20 to 23 give some ment as a Function of Mobility Ratio", Trans., AIME
information on the sweep expected in such cases (1960) Vol. 219, 264.
for the inverted five-spot pilot. * It may be noted 2. Lacey, J. W., Faris, J. E. and Brinkman, F. H.:
that the sweep at breakthrough for these slug "Effect of Bank Size on Oil Recovery of the High-
systems (37 to 50 per cent) is considerably less Pressure Gas-Driven LPG-Bank Process", Jour. Pet.
than that observed in the absence of slug (104 per Tech. (1961) Vol. 13, 806.
cent). The water apparently carries out an efficient 3. Brigham, W. E., Reed, P. W. and Dew, J. N.: "Experi-
sweep (Fig. 3e), but the slug fingers badly through ments on Mixing by Fluid Flow in Porous Media",
Soc. Pet. Eng. Jour. (March, 1961) Vol. 1, No. 1.
the oil. It appears that the area finally swept by
4. Taylor, Geoffrey: "Dispersion of Soluble Matter in
water will be considerably greater than that swept Solvent Flowing Slowly Through a Tube", Proc., Roy.
by the solvent slug. For that reason, this procedure Soc., London A (1953) Vol. 219, 186.
may have economic merit in the field in spite of 5. Prats, M., Matthews, C. S., Jewett, R. L. and Baker,
the fact that much of the displacement will not J. D.: "Prediction of Injection Rate and Production
be miscible. History for Multifluid Five-Spot Floods", Trans.,
AIME (1959) Vol. 216, 98.
CONCLUSIONS 6. Dyes, A. B., Caudle, B. H. and Erickson, R. A.: "Oil
Production After Breakthrough - As Influenced by
These model studies give insight into the effects Mobility Ratio", Trans., AIME (1954) Vol. 201, 81.
7. Perkins, F. M., Jr., Arnold, C. W. and Blackwell, R. J.:
*In our model all phases are miscible. This is not true at the
"Miscible Displacement Research", Oil and Gas Jour.
water-solvent interface in the reservoir. However, this should
cause little error, since fingering should not occur at the water- (Aug. 6, 1962) 118.
slug interface in either case.
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80 SOCIETY OF PETROLEUM ENGINEERS JOURNAL