The study of the influence of fluid mobilities on the sweepout pattern resulting from the injection of gas or water has been extended to cover the production period which follows breakthrough of the injected material. Mobility ratios over the range common in field operations (0.1 to 17) were studied for several pattern floods (five-spot, staggered, and direct line drive). The experimental data required for these studies were obtained by the use of the x-ray shadow graph technique using miscible oil phases of different viscosities in porous plate models of a reservoir element. From the shadowgraph pictures obtained before and after breakthrough of the injected fluid, flowing ratios at the producing well and cumulative volumes injected were calculated.

The method for applying such data in predicting field behavior is illustrated for a water flood of a five-spot. For this case a range of mobility ratios of 0.5 to 5.0 results in:

  1. nearly complete (95 to 100 per cent) sweepout pattern efficiencies at abandonment conditions,

  2. production after breakthrough being responsible for as much as one-third of the total recovery at the lower mobility ratios, and

  3. a twofold variation in the operating life of the reservoir.

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