Experimental Investigation of Biopolymer Rheology and Injectivity in Carbonates
- Deena Abdalla Elhossary (Khalifa University) | Waleed Alameri (Khalifa University) | Emad W. Al-Shalabi (Khalifa University)
- Document ID
- Offshore Technology Conference
- Offshore Technology Conference, 4-7 May, Houston, Texas, USA
- Publication Date
- Document Type
- Conference Paper
- 2020. Offshore Technology Conference
- 5 Reservoir Desciption & Dynamics, 5.4.10 Microbial Methods, 5.3.6 Chemical Flooding Methods (e.g., Polymer, Solvent, Nitrogen, Immiscible CO2, Surfactant, Vapex), 5.2 Reservoir Fluid Dynamics, 5.4 Improved and Enhanced Recovery, 5.2 Reservoir Fluid Dynamics, 4.3.4 Scale, 5.8 Unconventional and Complex Reservoirs, 5.4 Improved and Enhanced Recovery, 5.8.7 Carbonate Reservoir
- Carbonate Reservoirs, High Temperature High Salinity, Biopolymer, Polymer Flooding, Injectivity Studies
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Polymer flooding is a mature chemical enhanced oil recovery (CEOR) technology with over forty years of laboratory- and field-scale applications. Nevertheless, polymers exhibit poor performance in carbonates due to their complex nature of mixed-to-oil wettability, high temperature, high salinity, and heterogeneity with low permeability. The main objective of this study is to experimentally evaluate the performance of a biopolymer (Scleroglucan) in carbonates under harsh conditions of temperature and salinity. This experimental investigation includes polymer rheological studies as well as polymer injectivity tests. Rheological studies were performed on the biopolymer samples to measure the polymer viscosity as a function of concentration, shear rate, salinity, and temperature. Injectivity characteristics of this biopolymer were also examined through corefloods using high permeability carbonate outcrops. The injectivity tests consisted of two stages of water pre-flush and polymer injection. These tests were conducted using high salinity formation water (167,000 ppm) and seawater (43,000 ppm) at both room (25 °C) and high temperature (90 °C) conditions.
The rheological tests showed that the biopolymer has a high viscosifying power and it exhibits a shear-thinning behavior that is more prevalent at higher polymer concentrations. Also, a pronounced effect was observed for water salinity on both polymer filterability and polymer injectivity. The biopolymer exhibited better filterability at the high temperature as opposed to the room temperature. From the injectivity tests, the shear-thinning behavior of this biopolymer in the porous media was confirmed as the resistance factor decreased with increasing the flow rate applied. The potential biopolymer showed good injectivity at both the room and the high temperatures. This study provides further insight into the performance of this biopolymer in carbonate reservoirs and encourages further application under harsh conditions of salinity and temperature.
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