Mechanistic Simulation of Polymer Injectivity in Field Tests
- Mohammad Lotfollahi (University of Texas at Austin) | Rouhi Farajzadeh (Shell Global Solutions International; Delft University of Technology) | Mojdeh Delshad (University of Texas at Austin) | Al-Khalil Al-Abri (Petroleum Development Oman) | Bart M. Wassing (Petroleum Development Oman) | Rifaat Al-Mjeni (Petroleum Development Oman) | Kamran Awan (Petroleum Development Oman) | Pavel Bedrikovetsky (University of Adelaide)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- SPE Journal
- Publication Date
- August 2016
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 1,178 - 1,191
- 2016.Society of Petroleum Engineers
- Polymer Injection, Polymer retention, Polymer Junk, Deep bed filtration, Injectivity
- 12 in the last 30 days
- 814 since 2007
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Polymer flooding is one of the most widely used chemical enhanced-oil-recovery (EOR) methods because of its simplicity and low cost. To achieve high oil recoveries, large quantities of polymer solution are often injected through a small wellbore. Sometimes, the economic success of the project is only feasible when injection rate is high for high-viscosity solution. However, injection of viscous polymer solutions has been a concern for the field application of polymer flooding.
The pressure increase in polymer injectors can be attributed to (1) formation of an oil bank, (2) polymer rheology (shear-thickening behavior near wellbore), and (3) plugging of the reservoir pores by insoluble polymer molecules or suspended particles in the water.
In this paper, a new model to history match field injection-rate/pressure data is proposed. The pertinent equations for deep-bed filtration and external-cake buildup in radial coordinates were coupled to the viscoelastic polymer rheology to capture important mechanisms. Radial coordinates were selected to minimize the velocity/shear-rate errors caused by gridblock size in the Cartesian coordinates.
The filtration theory was used and the field data history matched successfully. Systematic simulations were performed, and the impact of adsorption (retention), shear thickening, deep-bed filtration, and external-cake formation was investigated to explain the well-injectivity behavior of polymer. The simulation results indicate that the gradual increase in bottomhole pressure (BHP) during early times is attributed to the shear-thickening rheology at high velocities experienced by viscoelastic hydrolyzed polyacrylamide (HPAM) polymers around the wellbore and the permeability reduction caused by polymer adsorption and internal filtration of undissolved polymer. However, the linear impedance during external-cake growth is responsible for the sharper increase in injection pressure at the later times.
One can use the proposed model to calculate the injectivity of the polymer-injection wells, understand the contribution of different phenomena to the pressure rise in the wells, locate the plugging or damage that may be caused by polymer, and accordingly design the chemical stimulation if necessary.
|File Size||2 MB||Number of Pages||14|
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