Application of Polymer Gels and Viscosified WAG in Conformance Control of CO2 Floods


Application of Polymer Gels and Viscosified WAG in Conformance Control of CO2 Floods

CETI 13-005

Authors: A.H.A. Al-Ali, R.H. Lane, D.S. Schechter; Texas A&M University

Volume 1, Number 4

With the production from mature oil fields declining, the in-creasing demand for oil is driving the industry towards more effective recovery of the available resources. With more than 40 years of experience gained from CO2 flooding, successful projects have demonstrated incremental oil recovery ranging from 7 to 15% of the oil initially in place. Despite the success of CO2 flooding, sweep efficiency during CO2 floods is typically the stumbling block to better application of the technology. Poor sweep efficiency can result in early breakthrough and ineffective extraction leaving zones of high oil saturation intact. The conformance control approach employs gel treatments to act as a blocking agents reducing channeling through fractures or high-permeability zones of an oil reservoir without significantly damaging hydrocarbon productivity and improve the overall oil recovery from the flooding process. Accordingly, the goal of the gel is to maximize gel penetration and permeability reduction in highly permeable zones, while minimizing gel penetration and permeability reduction in less permeable zones of the reservoir. Gel conformance control studies show encouraging results in minimizing the effect of heterogeneities directing the injected CO2 to extract more oil from the lower permeability zones. The gel strength was evaluated in terms of breakdown and leakoff utilizing production data in addition to CT imaging analysis. Viscosified water during WAG coupled with CO2 shows promising results, which may prove the superiority of this process over continuous CO2 injection or WAG.

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© 2012 Canadian Energy Technology & Innovation (CETI) Group
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