The Effect of Residual Oil on Deep-Bed Filtration of Particles in Injection Water
- Mohammad A.J. Ali (Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research KISR) | Peter K. Currie (Delft University of Technology) | Mohammad J. Salman (Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research KISR)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- SPE Production & Operations
- Publication Date
- February 2009
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 117 - 123
- 2009. Society of Petroleum Engineers
- 5.3.4 Reduction of Residual Oil Saturation, 5.2 Reservoir Fluid Dynamics, 1.8 Formation Damage, 2.4.3 Sand/Solids Control, 1.6.9 Coring, Fishing, 6.5.2 Water use, produced water discharge and disposal, 5.2.1 Phase Behavior and PVT Measurements
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Production of hydrocarbons is usually accompanied by the production of water. This produced water consists of formation water and/or water that has previously been injected into the formation. As more oil is produced, the amount of produced water increases. Unfortunately, the produced water is not a saleable product; hence an operator must find ways to handle relatively large amounts of water in an environmentally-acceptable manner at the lowest cost. One way of managing this water is to re-inject it for disposal, pressure maintenance, or enhanced oil recovery. An important and difficult task in the re-injection process is the prediction of the impact of water quality on well injectivity. This is mainly because of the poor understanding of the deposition mechanisms by which suspended solids and oil droplets present in the produced water are retained by the formation.
As part of a study on formation damage, different concentrations of hematite particles suspended in water were injected into sandstone core samples at residual oil saturation. The theories of deep-bed filtration are evaluated. The effects of residual oil on the filtration coefficient ? and the formation damage factor ß are examined. The presence of oil caused greater apparent damage (reduction of permeability). It was also observed that there is rather deeper invasion at residual oil saturation than at full brine saturation.
Produced water containing oil in the range of 500 mg/l to 5000 mg/l or higher is usually treated before reinjection for two reasons. First of all, the oil in the injection water may cause damage to the formation, hence the oil content of the injection fluid must be reduced to a suitable level before use for reinjection. Secondly, the oil that is recovered from the produced water is routed to the oil sales meter to generate cash for the operation, (Thro et al. 1997; Van der Zande 2000; Janssen 2000). Nevertheless, some oil will always remain in the injection water. Over time, oil will accumulate around the wellbore and form an oil-bank in which there is residual oil saturation. Thus, it is very relevant to discuss the effect of this residual oil on the injectivity of the well.
Several researchers tried to study deep-bed filtration on cores that are 100% saturated with brine while injecting suspended particles or oily-water, or a combination of both, but very few (Hsi et al. 1994; Colman and McLelland 1994) have tried injecting suspended particles into cores at residual oil saturation. In this study, an online single detector x-ray system was used to examine deep-bed filtration during water injection in sandstone cores at residual oil saturation. Hematite particles were suspended in the brine at different concentrations. Such cores were used to more closely approximate the conditions and wettability effects in the region around a wellbore.
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