American Institute of Mining, Metallurgical, and Petroleum Engineers, Inc.

This paper was prepared for the Rocky Mountain Regional Meeting of the Society of Petroleum Engineers of AIME, to be held in Denver, Colo., April 7–9, 1975. Permission to copy is restricted to an abstract of not more than 300 words. Illustrations may not be copied. The abstract should contain conspicuous acknowledgment of where and by whom the paper is presented. Publication elsewhere after publication in the JOURNAL paper is presented. Publication elsewhere after publication in the JOURNAL OF PETROLEUM TECHNOLOGY or the SOCIETY OF PETROLEUM ENGINEERS JOURNAL is usually granted upon request to the Editor of the appropriate journal provided agreement to give proper credit is made. provided agreement to give proper credit is made. Discussion of this paper is invited. Three copies of any discussion should be sent to the Society of Petroleum Engineers office. Such discussion may be presented at the above meeting and, with the paper, may be considered for publication in one of the two SPE magazines.

Abstract

A recent development has made it possible to use high molecular weight polymers in a liquid, rather than solid form. A comparison of the particles of a solid and a liquid polyacrylamide is made with micrographs of polyacrylamide is made with micrographs of each presented. The effect of these particles on handling and solubility is then discussed. Also presented are viscosity comparisons between liquid and solid polymers, as well as comparative core flood data and a discussion of the results. Reference is made to recently issued patents relating to oil recovery utilizing liquid polymers. Also, brief reference is made to field injectivity projects in various parts of the country. projects in various parts of the country

Introduction

High molecular weight polymers have evoked considerable interest in recent years for oil recovery operations, both secondary and tertiary. Polysaccharides and partially hydrolyzed polyacrylamides have been tested, both in the lab and in field trials to aid in recovering oil left in the reservoir.

While many questions still remain to be answered about what occurs in the reservoir, many operators have enhanced their oil recovery through the use of polymers in secondary and tertiary recovery projects.

Some oil companies are licensing their technology in tertiary recovery methods, making use of polymers to serve as the dive fluid to more efficiently push the surfactant or micellar flood through the reservoir.

USE OF SOLID POLYMERS

Oil recovery polymers are generally very high molecular weight; at least 1 million and greater. Until recently, only dry polymers were available for oil recovery projects. polymers were available for oil recovery projects. To use the dry product effectively, particular care and attention must be given to the handling and make up procedures required to put them into solution. Solid polymers have a justifiable reputation of being difficult to dissolve.

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