In this research an ionic liquid base Nickel was used in a combustion tube with heavy oil from Gulf of Mexico. The underlying objective is to increase the mobility and quality of the oil inside the reservoir by effect of the ionic solution catalyst during the combustion.

The catalyst, used in the experiments was previously mixed with heavy crude oil of 12.5 °API. The catalyst in liquid phase is based Nickel. This ionic catalyst is highly soluble and ultradispersed in heavy oil, and it was mixture with heavy crude oil with a concentration of 500 ppm wt.

The porous media used in the combustion tube was a triturated dolomite carbonated rock with a 35.23% of porosity, and a particle size of 0.42 mm. This rock was used for two experiments at the same saturation conditions: heavy crude oil (23.79%), and water (25.26%).

The results obtained shown the advantages of use of this catalyst in relationship of a conventional combustion as follows: (1) important viscosity reduction, (2) increment of oil production, 85% vs. 77.67%, (3) faster combustion front, (4) higher efficiency in the combustion, 75.86 vs. 197.28 ft3 air/ft3 hydrocarbons, (5) higher temperatures through the combustion process, around 600 °C, and (6) reduction of the contain of sulphur, resins and asphaltenes in the oil produced.

Using this kind of Nickel ionic solution catalyst at low concentration would permit to increase the recovery factor, and upgrade the oil properties in-situ.

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