Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage (SAGD)1  has become the preferred in-situ recovery concept for Athabasca bitumen. However, to maintain steam-trap control, rates are limited by the close vertical spacing between the parallel horizontal wells. In Cross-SAGD (XSAGD) the injection wells are perpendicular to the producing wells. Sections of the wells near the crossing points are either restricted from the start, or are later plugged, to achieve a significant rate and thermal efficiency advantage over SAGD, especially in cases where low pressure is required.

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