Tulsa conference discusses advances in improving oil recovery

Guntis Moritis
Production Editor

TULSA, Apr. 16 -- Oil recovery factors for many of the world's oil fields have improved over the years, but implementing new technologies, expanding existing technologies to other reservoirs, and understanding the processes better can improve recovery further.

That can be gleaned from some of the papers presented at the Society of Petroleum Engineers and US Department of Energy 13th Symposium on Improved Oil Recovery this week in Tulsa.

Water, steam, and carbon dioxide gas injection remain the more common ways for improving recoveries, but various research and pilot projects aim to adapt these methods to a greater variety of reservoirs and refine the processes so that they are more predictable.

Air injection in lighter oil reservoirs, horizontal injectors that rejuvenate mature miscible floods, alkaline-surfactant-polymers, and water-alternating-gas in the North Sea were some topics discussed at the symposium.

Presentations
R.G. Moore, of the University of Calgary, discussed the work at the university that indicated air injection has considerable potential in fields that produce lighter-gravity crude oil, especially in areas without an existing infrastructure for delivering carbon dioxide for injection. He said the process will work as long as operators inject sufficient quantities of air and determine beforehand if the oil will spontaneously ignite.

In another Canadian paper, K. A. Edwards, et al., Conoco Canada Ltd.—formerly Gulf Canada Resources Ltd.—discussed the benefits gained from reinitiating hydrocarbon miscible flooding with horizontal injectors and reduced well spacing in the South Swan Hills Unit in northwestern Alberta.
South Swan Hills produces from a carbonate reef with an OOIP of 850 million bbl.
They said four patterns have been developed to date, with the first two having completed solvent injection and now being on chase-water injection.
Recovery has been 800,000-900,000 bbl/pattern of incremental oil, or more than 10% of pattern OOIP from areas that were part of the original miscible flood, they said.
In the pattern, the horizontal well is low in the pay section to allow sweeping of the part of the reservoir that was missed because of gravity override during injection into vertical wells.

A paper by Clara Hernandez, et al., of Petroleos de Venezuela SA described how single-well chemical tracer tests (SWCT) measured residual oil saturation in a zone before and after it had been swept by alkaline-surfactant-polymer (ASP) fluid.
ASP injection reduced residual oil saturation at the well to 13-19% from 28-34% at Lagomar VLA-6/9/21 Area, C4 Member, Lake Maracaibo, Venezuela.

Simultaneous water-alternating-gas (SWAG) improved oil recovery in Siri field off Denmark, the subject of a paper by Lars Inge Berge, et al., of Statoil AS.
The authors indicated that the main contribution of the process comes from improved sweep, oil swelling, and reduced residual oil saturation, although maintaining injectivity is a main concern with the method.
In the process, the associated produced gas is mixed with injection water at the wellhead and injected as a two-phase mixture. Statoil has used the process from the start of production in Siri field in 1999.

Contact the author at guntis@ogjonline.com

Related Articles

WAFWA: Aerial survey finds lesser prairie chicken population grew

07/06/2015 A recent range-wide aerial survey found the lesser prairie chicken population rose 25% from 2014 to 2015, the Western Association of Fish & Wil...

Production ramps up from Sunrise oil sands project

07/06/2015 Husky Energy Inc., Calgary, reported that 25 well pairs are now on production at its Sunrise oil sands project in northeastern Alberta. Steaming is...

Buru awarded onshore Canning licenses

07/06/2015 Buru Energy Ltd., Perth, and Mitsubish Corp. have been granted two production licenses for Ungani oil field in the onshore Canning basin of Western...

CERI: Energy, operational efficiencies possible in Canadian oil, gas

07/06/2015 Measures can be taken by operators in the expanding resource-intensive Canadian oil and gas sector to improve both energy efficiency and operationa...

Macondo settlement seen ‘positive’ for BP

07/06/2015 BP Exploration & Production Inc.’s recent agreement to settle federal and state claims related to the 2010 Macondo blowout and spill improves t...

Court to EPA: Costs matter

07/06/2015 Oil and gas groups did not respond immediately when the US Supreme Court ruled on June 29 that the US Environmental Protection Agency acted unreaso...

Innovation addresses US environmental regulations; more needed

07/06/2015 Technology spawned the recent boom in US oil and gas production which in turn led to new regulations that keep the environment and people safe.

Earth model assists Permian asset valuation

07/06/2015 Laredo Petroleum Inc.'s Permian-Garden City asset is an unconventional resource play with more than four potential stacked zones covering a 1,700 s...

China's Yanchi area, western Ordos basin derived from mixed source

07/06/2015 The Yanchi area lies in the west of China's Ordos basin and to the west of the giant Sulige gas field, site of recent breakthroughs in Lower Permia...
White Papers

2015 Global Engineering Information Management Solutions Competitive Strategy Innovation and Leadership Award

The Frost & Sullivan Best Practices Awards recognise companies in a variety of regional and global...
Sponsored by

Three Tips to Improve Safety in the Oil Field

Working oil fields will always be tough work with inherent risks. There’s no getting around that. Ther...
Sponsored by

Pipeline Integrity: Best Practices to Prevent, Detect, and Mitigate Commodity Releases

Commodity releases can have catastrophic consequences, so ensuring pipeline integrity is crucial for p...
Sponsored by

AVEVA’s Digital Asset Approach - Defining a new era of collaboration in capital projects and asset operations

There is constant, intensive change in the capital projects and asset life cycle management. New chall...
Sponsored by

Transforming the Oil and Gas Industry with EPPM

With budgets in the billions, timelines spanning years, and life cycles extending over decades, oil an...
Sponsored by

Asset Decommissioning in Oil & Gas: Transforming Business

Asset intensive organizations like Oil and Gas have their own industry specific challenges when it com...
Sponsored by

Squeezing the Green: How to Cut Petroleum Downstream Costs and Optimize Processing Efficiencies with Enterprise Project Portfolio Management Solutions

As the downstream petroleum industry grapples with change in every sector and at every level, includin...
Sponsored by

7 Steps to Improve Oil & Gas Asset Decommissioning

Global competition and volatile markets are creating a challenging business climate for project based ...
Sponsored by
Available Webcasts

On Demand

OGJ's Midyear Forecast 2015

Fri, Jul 10, 2015

This webcast is to be presented by OGJ Editor Bob Tippee and Senior Economic Editor Conglin Xu.  They will summarize the Midyear Forecast projections in key categories, note important changes from January’s forecasts, and examine reasons for the adjustments.

register:WEBCAST


Predictive Analytics in your digital oilfield - Optimize Production Yield and Reduce Operational Costs

Tue, Jul 7, 2015

Putting predictive analytics to work in your oilfield can help you anticipate failures, plan and schedule work in advance, eliminate emergency work and catastrophic failures, and at the same time you can optimize working capital and improve resource utilization.  When you apply analytic capabilities to critical production assets it is possible to reduce non-productive time and increase your yield.

Learn how IBM's analytics capabilities can be applied to critical production assets with the goal of reducing non-productive time, increasing yield and reducing operations costs.

register:WEBCAST


Cognitive Solutions for Upstream Oil and Gas

Fri, Jun 12, 2015

The oil & gas sector is under pressure on all sides. Reserves are limited and it’s becoming increasingly expensive to find and extract new resources. Margins are already being squeezed in an industry where one wrong decision can cost millions. Analyzing data used in energy exploration can save millions of dollars as we develop ways to predict where and how to extract the world’s massive energy reserves.

This session with IBM Subject Matter Experts will discuss how IBM Cognitive Solutions contribute to the oil and gas industry using predictive analytics and cognitive computing, as well as real time streaming for exploration and drilling.

register:WEBCAST


The Alternative Fuel Movement: Four Need-to-Know Excise Tax Complexities

Thu, Jun 4, 2015

Discussion on how to approach, and ultimately embrace, the alternative fuel market by pulling back the veil on excise tax complexities. Taxes may be an aggravating part of daily operations, but their accuracy is crucial in your path towards business success.

register:WEBCAST


Emerson Micro Motion Videos

Careers at TOTAL

Careers at TOTAL - Videos

More than 600 job openings are now online, watch videos and learn more!

 

Click Here to Watch

Other Oil & Gas Industry Jobs

Search More Job Listings >>
Stay Connected