Diffusivity of Gas Into Bitumen: Part II—Data Set and Correlation
- William D. L. Richardson (University of Calgary) | Florian F. Schoeggl (University of Calgary) | Shawn D. Taylor (Schlumberger-Doll Research Center) | Brij Maini (University of Calgary) | Harvey W. Yarranton (University of Calgary)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- SPE Journal
- Publication Date
- August 2019
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 1,667 - 1,680
- 2019.Society of Petroleum Engineers
- correlation, hydrocarbon gas, diffusivity, heavy oil
- 4 in the last 30 days
- 112 since 2007
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The oil-production rate of in-situ heavy-oil-recovery processes involving the injection of gaseous hydrocarbons partly depends on the diffusivity of the gas in the bitumen. Data for gas diffusivities, particularly above ambient temperature, are relatively scarce because they are time consuming to measure. In this study, the diffusion and solubilities of gaseous methane, ethane, propane, and n-butane in a Western Canadian bitumen were measured from 40 to 90°C and pressures from 300 to 2300 kPa, using a pressure-decay method. The diffusivities were determined from a numerical model of the experiments that accounted for the swelling of the oil. In Part I of this study (Richardson et al. 2019), it was found that both constant and viscosity-dependent diffusivities could be used to model the mass of gas diffused and the gas-concentration profile in the bitumen; however, the constant diffusivity was different for each experiment and mainly depended on the oil viscosity. In this study, a correlation for the constant diffusivity to the oil viscosity is developed as a tool to quickly estimate the gas diffusivity. A correlation of diffusivity to the mixture viscosity is also developed for use in more-rigorous diffusion models. The maximum deviations in the mass diffused over time predicted with the constant and viscosity-dependent (mixture viscosity) correlations at each condition are on average 7.4 and 8.7%, respectively.
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