pH-Insensitive Polymeric Particles for Enhanced Oil Recovery in Reservoirs With Fractures
- Krishna Panthi (University of Texas at Austin) | Kishore K. Mohanty (University of Texas at Austin)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- SPE Journal
- Publication Date
- February 2018
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 34 - 47
- 2018.Society of Petroleum Engineers
- polymeric particles, conformance, fractured reservoirs, pH-insensitive, CO2 flood
- 5 in the last 30 days
- 325 since 2007
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Many carbonate reservoirs have natural fractures that reduce the sweep efficiency of displacement processes. The goal of this study is to improve oil recovery by reducing fluid bypassing caused by fractures, especially in carbon dioxide (CO2) floods. The pH-insensitive polymeric particles (PIPPs) synthesized in this study can plug fractures in reservoir rocks and divert fluid flow into the rock matrix. PIPPs swell in brine similar to polymeric particle gels (PPGs) published in literature; the swelling is a function of brine salinity. A PIPP expands many times (approximately 35 times) in deionized (DI) water, but swells only approximately 3 times in very-high-salinity (20 wt% NaCl) brine. The swelling of the particles is independent of pH in the range of 2 to 12. The swelling process is reversible with salinity. In water without divalent cations, these particles are stable at 80C for at least a month. Coreflood results show that these small particles can be transported through fractures during high-salinity-brine injection and reduce the flow capacity of the fractures during low-salinity-brine injection. Subsequently, the injection fluid (brine, toluene, or CO2) is diverted into the matrix, and recovers oil from previously unswept matrix. PIPP injection increases waterflood recovery in cores with full fractures and half fractures connected to the inlet. PIPP placement also increases oil recovery for tertiary miscible/CO2 floods.
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