Alkaline Surfactant Polymer Formulation for Saudi Arabian Carbonate Reservoirs
- H.S. Al-Hashim (King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals, Dhahran, Saudi Arabia) | V. Obiora (King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals, Dhahran, Saudi Arabia) | H.Y. Al-Yousef (King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals, Dhahran, Saudi Arabia) | F. Fernandez (King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals, Dhahran, Saudi Arabia) | W. Nofal (King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals, Dhahran, Saudi Arabia)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- SPE/DOE Improved Oil Recovery Symposium, 21-24 April, Tulsa, Oklahoma
- Publication Date
- Document Type
- Conference Paper
- 1996. Society of Petroleum Engineers
- 5.8.7 Carbonate Reservoir, 5.3.2 Multiphase Flow, 5.2 Reservoir Fluid Dynamics, 5.4.7 Chemical Flooding Methods (e.g., Polymer, Solvent, Nitrogen, Immiscible CO2, Surfactant, Vapex), 4.1.2 Separation and Treating, 5.4.1 Waterflooding, 2.5.2 Fracturing Materials (Fluids, Proppant), 1.6.9 Coring, Fishing, 4.1.5 Processing Equipment, 4.3.4 Scale, 5.4.10 Microbial Methods, 6.5.4 Naturally Occurring Radioactive Materials
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This paper presents a systematic study to test the applicability of alkaline-surfactant-polymer (ASP) processes as an enhanced oil recovery method to Saudi Arabian carbonate reservoirs, with the objective of designing a cost-effective ASP slug.
To achieve this objective, several alkalis were first screened to test their compatibility with the injected sea water that has large quantities of divalent ions. Then surfactant-polymer, alkalis-surfactant, and alkalis-surfactant-polymer interactions at the reservoir temperature (90 C) were investigated. Static and dynamic adsorption of surfactant on reservoir carbonate rocks were also investigated at the same temperature. IFT measurements were also made between the slugs formulated and crude oil from the same reservoir. And finally core flooding tests were carried out using Arab-D carbonate core samples to test the effectiveness of the formulated slugs. Two surfactants were used, Triton X-102 and Ethoxylated sulfonate (Dodi-flood B1083), and the polymer used was FLOCON 4800C.
The results of the compatibility tests showed that the ASP slug has to be prepared using a softened brine and be protected by pre- and after-flush softening brine slugs. B1083 surfactant was found to be a promising candidate surfactant for the conditions of the Saudi Arabian carbonate reservoir. A combination of NaHCO3 and Na2CO3 was found to significantly reduce the adsorption level of B1083 surfactant on carbonate rock at low surfactant concentrations (<1% by wt.). This is very desirable for formulation of a cost-effective ASP slug. Finally, the results of core flooding tests under reservoir conditions using the formulated ASP slugs on Arab-D carbonate core samples showed a promising additional oil recovery.
Although alkaline surfactant polymer (ASP) flooding has been recognized to be one of the most cost-effective techniques in enhanced oil recovery (EOR). the success of this process depends on the identification of the proper alkali, surfactant, and polymer and on the way they are combined to produce compatible formulation that yields good crude oil emulsification, low chemical losses and good mobility control.
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