Polymer Flood Application to Improve Heavy Oil Recovery at East Bodo
- F.R. Wassmuth (Alberta Research Council) | K. Green (Alberta Research Council) | W. Arnold (Pengrowth Corporation) | N. Cameron (Pengrowth Corporation)
- Document ID
- Petroleum Society of Canada
- Journal of Canadian Petroleum Technology
- Publication Date
- February 2009
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 55 - 61
- 2009. Petroleum Society of Canada (now Society of Petroleum Engineers)
- 4.3.4 Scale, 4.3.1 Hydrates, 1.6.10 Coring, Fishing, 5.7.2 Recovery Factors, 5.8.5 Oil Sand, Oil Shale, Bitumen, 5.4.1 Waterflooding, 6.5.2 Water use, produced water discharge and disposal, 5.4.7 Chemical Flooding Methods (e.g., Polymer, Solvent, Nitrogen, Immiscible CO2, Surfactant, Vapex), 5.5.8 History Matching, 4.1.9 Tanks and storage systems, 4.1.2 Separation and Treating, 1.8 Formation Damage, 5.6.4 Drillstem/Well Testing, 2.1.3 Sand/Solids Control, 4.1.5 Processing Equipment, 5.5 Reservoir Simulation, 2.5.2 Fracturing Materials (Fluids, Proppant), 5.3.9 Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage, 5.3.2 Multiphase Flow, 5.4.6 Thermal Methods, 4.2 Pipelines, Flowlines and Risers
- East Bodo, polymer flooding, heavy oil
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The East Bodo, Lloydminster SS heavy oil pool has been exploited using primary recovery and waterflood. IOR screening showed that a polymer flood would be a preferred IOR technique. Subsequent coreflood tests indicated that the polymer flood could recover 20% OOIP incremental oil, after waterflooding, to a 95% water cut. Data gathered from the coreflood was used to fine tune the reservoir simulation model to help design the pilot and predict potential economic reserve capture for a commercial field-wide polymer flood. Subsequently, a pilot was initiated. During the pilot operation, achieving the target polymer viscosity, dependant on water quality, proved to be a significant challenge. Early field response is being observed through an increase in injection pressure, reduced water cut and polymer breakthrough. Further positive response of this polymer pilot allows for the expansion of the polymer flood technology to other parts of this reservoir; some with bottomwater and gas cap. This paper reviews the progress of the East Bodo polymer flood, from laboratory concept to working field application, in four major steps: 1) IOR screening using simulations and coreflooding, 2) field pilot design/implementation, 3) pilot performance, and 4) next steps.
Pengrowth has targeted East Bodo (Alberta side) and Cosine (Saskatchewan side) for waterflood optimization and subsequent enhanced oil recovery applications. Currently, the most practical EOR technology for this heavy oil reservoir seems to be the polymer flood technology in combination with horizontal wells. Several investigators(1-4) have demonstrated the potential of the polymer flood technology for improved oil recovery in heavy oil reservoirs.
The East Bodo/Cosine Reservoir produces from the Lloydminster Formation, which is part of the Lower Cretaceous Mannville Group. Pengrowth provided some of the reservoir characteristics, as summarized in Table 1. This particular reservoir is separated into two parallel lobes trending North/West to South/East.
To complicate matters, local gas caps are found primarily on the Saskatchewan side of the reservoir. Thus, the current waterflood patterns are located on the Alberta side. In the future, optimized waterflood and EOR schemes need to include those parts of the reservoir which are overlain by gas caps or influenced by bottomwater. A plan of progression aligned with the priorities of Pengrowth was laid out as follows:
- Optimize existing waterflood;
- Step out waterflood into limited gas cap areas;
- Then, target areas with a more extensive gas cap;
- Determine enhanced waterflood potential, for instance polymer flood; and
- Arrange well patterns to benefit both waterflood and subsequent EOR process.
Several IOR technologies were considered for application in the East Bodo Field. What follows is a list of IOR processes that were initially considered, but screened out after technical or economical issues could not be overcome.
- Thermal Recovery: Pay is too thin - heat loss to overburden is too large; oil not viscous enough to form a stable steam chamber; fireflood has potential, but a previous pilot on a neighbouring McLaren pool yielded poor results.
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