Thermal Enhanced Oil Recovery Process - Petroleum Courses

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Friday, October 14, 2016

Thermal Enhanced Oil Recovery Process


Recovery Processes provide heat to the reservoir to reduce oil viscosity (or) to vaporize the oil. In both instances, the oil is made more mobile so that it can be more effectively driven to producing wells. Besides adding heat, these processes provide a driving force (i.e. pressure) to move oil to producing wells. There are two principal thermal recovery methods; steam injection and in-situ combustion

Thermal Enhanced Oil Recovery With Steam Flooding Method


Description
The steam drive process or steam flooding involves the continuous injection of about 80% quality steam to displace crude oil towards producing wells. Normal practice is to precede & accompany the steam drive by a cyclic steam stimulation of the producing wells called “huff & puff” or “steam soak”
Mechanism
Thermal Recovery With Steam Recovers Crude Oil By
  • Heating the crude oil and reducing its viscosity
  •               Supplying the pressure to drive oil to the producing well




Limitations
     Oil saturations must be quite high and the pay zone should be more than 20 ft thick to minimize heat losses to adjacent formations
    Lighter, less viscous crude oils can be steam flooded but normally will not be if the reservoir will respond to an ordinary water flood
      Steam flooding is primarily applicable to viscous oils in massive, high permeability sandstones or unconsolidated sands
      Steam flooding is not normally used in carbonate reservoirs
Problems
i)  Adverse mobility ratio and channeling of steam

Thermal Enhanced Oil Recovery Recovery With In-situ Combustion Method


Description
Thermal enhanced oil recovery with In-situ combustion or fire flooding involves starting a fire in the reservoir and injecting air to sustain the burning of some of the crude oil. The most common techniques is forward combustion in which the reservoir is ignited in an injection well and air is injected to propagate the combustion front away from the well. One of the variations of this technique is a Combination Of Forward Combustion And Water flooding (COFCAW). A second technique is reverse combustion in which a fire is started in a well that will eventually become a producing well and air injection is then switched to adjacent wells. However no successful field trials have been completed for reverse combustion


  

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