- Ahmed Alshmakhy (University of Calgary) | Brij B. Maini (University of Calgary)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- Journal of Canadian Petroleum Technology
- Publication Date
- January 2012
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 60 - 65
- 2012. Society of Petroleum Engineers
- 5.1 Reservoir Characterisation, 5.1.1 Exploration, Development, Structural Geology, 4.1.2 Separation and Treating, 2.4.3 Sand/Solids Control, 4.1.5 Processing Equipment, 5.2.1 Phase Behavior and PVT Measurements, 4.6 Natural Gas
- Viscosity, Foamy Oil, Heavy Oil
- 20 in the last 30 days
- 1,300 since 2007
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Foamy-oil viscosity is a controversial topic among researchers regarding what happens to the oil viscosity when the solution gas starts coming out of solution because of decreasing pressure and the released gas starts migrating with the oil in the form of dispersed gas bubbles. For conventional oils, below the true bubblepoint pressure, the oil viscosity increases as the gas freely evolves from the oil. For foamy oils, it has been suggested that the apparent oil viscosity remains relatively constant or perhaps declines slightly between the true bubblepoint and a characteristic lower pressure, called pseudobubblepoint, which is the pressure at which the gas starts separating from the oil. Below this pressure, the viscosity increases, reaching the dead-oil value at atmospheric pressure. However, it is a well-known fact in dispersion rheology that the viscosity of dispersion is higher than the viscosity of the continuous phase. Therefore, the concept of foamy-oil viscosity being lower than the oil viscosity is counterintuitive. It is likely that the apparent viscosity for flow of foamy oil in porous media is not the true dispersion viscosity because of the size of dispersed bubbles being comparable to the pore sizes.
This study investigates this issue by measuring the foamy-oil viscosity under varied conditions. The effect of several parameters, such as flow rate, gas volume fraction, and type of viscometer employed, on foamy-oil viscosity was evaluated experimentally. Three different viscosity-measurement techniques, including Cambridge falling-needle viscometer, capillary tube, and a slimtube packed with sand, were used to measure the apparent viscosity of gas-in-oil dispersions. The results show that the type of measuring device used has a significant effect. The results obtained with Cambridge falling-needle viscometer correlate better with the observed behaviour in the sand-packed slimtube than the capillary viscometer results. Overall, the apparent viscosity of foamy oil was found to be similar to live-oil viscosity for a range of gas volume fractions.
|File Size||1 MB||Number of Pages||6|
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