Abstract

Laboratory experiments at Alberta Research Council (now Alberta Innovates Technology Futures) have indicated the potential for improving the recovery of bitumen and heavy oil, and a substantial reduction of SOR relative to SAGD, by the addition of substantial volumes of light hydrocarbon to steam as an enhancement of SAGD. Many scaled lab model experiments have been completed, some of which have identified solvent/steam ratios that outperformed low pressure SAGD. In order to more reliably scale the results of these experiments, it was desired to measure the rate of oil production and hence solvent front advance rate in field permeability sand. The experiments were isothermal to simplify the numerical simulations. Three experiments were completed, one at 68°C one at 80°C and one at 100°C. The respective butane pressures were 700 kPa, 1020 kPa and 1450 kPa. The respective oil rates were 52.5 g/h, 62.3 g/h and 63.2 g/h. Solvent front advance rates were 7.81 cm/d, 9.0 cm/d and 9.42 cm/d. These rates translate into SAGD-like rates when extrapolated to a field size project.

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