Recently, considerable attention has been focused on the application of nanoparticles (NPs) for enhanced oil recovery (EOR) purposes. Previous studies on NPs transportation in porous media were conducted in subsurface alluvial zones and sandy soils which did not cover the whole conditions in oil fields. Besides, issues of how and where these materials distribute into the porous media remain major challenges. In this study, mechanisms governing the transport and retention of three metal oxide nanoparticles (NPs) namely Al2O3, TiO2, and SiO2 through limestone and quartz sand porous media were firstly investigated. Then, the named NPs were applied for enhanced oil recovery purpose in these porous media. For this aim, the nanopowders were dispersed in de-ionized water at concentration of 0.005wt%. Vertical columns were packed using limestone, and quartz sand grains in the range of 125 to 175µm. Breakthrough curves in the columns effluents were measured by UV-VIS spectrometry. It was found that the mobility of named NPs through mentioned porous media strongly depends on the NPs surface charge and stability as well as porous media surface charge and roughness. The obtained results from transport experimental tests were found to be in agreement with the classical filtration and Derjaguin-Landau-Verwey-Overbeek (DLVO) theories. Moreover, amount of oil recovery by the NPs was found to have direct relationship with their mobility through porous media where NPs with higher mobilities cause higher oil recoveries.

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