Review of Thermal Recovery Technologies for the Clearwater and Lower Grand Rapids Formations in the Cold Lake Area in Alberta
- Qi Jiang (Osum Oil Sands Corporation) | Bruce Thornton (Osum Oil Sands Corporation) | Jen Russel-Houston (Osum Oil Sands Corporation) | Steve Spence (Osum Oil Sands Corporation)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- Journal of Canadian Petroleum Technology
- Publication Date
- September 2010
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 2 - 13
- 2010. Society of Petroleum Engineers
- 5.1.5 Geologic Modeling, 4.6 Natural Gas, 5.4.6 Thermal Methods, 1.2.3 Rock properties, 5.3.9 Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage, 5.3.4 Integration of geomechanics in models, 5.2 Reservoir Fluid Dynamics, 5.1.1 Exploration, Development, Structural Geology
- Cold Lake area, thermal recovery, Clearwater formation, Lower Grand Rapids formation
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- 1,223 since 2007
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Cyclic Steam Stimulation (CSS) has been a commercial recovery process since the mid 1980s in the Cold Lake area in northeast Alberta. The current bitumen production is over 220,000 B/D using CSS from this area. To achieve desired injectivity in the bitumen saturated reservoir, steam is usually injected at a pressure above or close to the fracture pressure of the formation. A relatively high pressure drawdown is created between the wellbore and formation during the production phase, particularly in the early stage of the production cycle where formation compaction and solution gas drive are the two most important recovery mechanisms. The CSS process has limited application in reservoirs with thick bottom water or in reservoirs with fine grain sands.
The Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage (SAGD) process has been field tested and commercially expanded in the Lower Grand Rapids and Clearwater Formations in the Cold Lake area. In contrast to CSS, SAGD is a continuous steam injection process that relies on gravity and requires a minimum pressure drawdown to drive the reservoir fluids to the wellbore. This provides a significant advantage for SAGD as an option for the reservoirs with bottom water, top gas or with formations with fine grain sands. Several SAGD projects are in operation in different types of reservoirs in the Cold Lake and Lloydminster areas; some with thick bottom water zones.
A performance review is conducted based on the available data for various CSS and SAGD projects in the Cold Lake area. The selection criteria between CSS and SAGD technologies for Clearwater and Lower Grand Rapids are discussed. Reservoir modeling results are presented concerning the impact of well placement, reservoir heterogeneity and operating parameters on SAGD performance, based on Osum's Lower Grand Rapids and Clearwater geology in the Cold Lake area.
|File Size||1 MB||Number of Pages||12|
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