Investigation of the Complex Flow Behaviour of Surfactant-Based Fluids in Straight Tubing
- Ahmed H. Ahmed Kamel (University of Oklahoma) | Subhash Shah (University of Oklahoma)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- Journal of Canadian Petroleum Technology
- Publication Date
- June 2010
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 13 - 20
- 2010. Society of Petroleum Engineers
- 2.4.6 Frac and Pack, 3.2.3 Hydraulic Fracturing Design, Implementation and Optimisation, 2.4.5 Gravel pack design & evaluation, 4.1.2 Separation and Treating, 5.2.2 Fluid Modeling, Equations of State, 2.5.2 Fracturing Materials (Fluids, Proppant), 2.2.2 Perforating, 4.3.4 Scale, 5.2 Fluid Characterization
- flow behaviour, surfactant-based fluids, friction-pressure
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- 308 since 2007
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In spite of their wide use in hydraulic fracturing and gravel-pack operations, the complex flow behaviour of surfactant-based (SB) fluids in straight tubing is rarely investigated. Accurate prediction of friction-pressure is essential for proper treatment design. Previous correlations from small tubing data and using simple power-law fluid model parameters alone do not scaleup to large tubing sizes for field application.
The properties of one of the most popular surfactants, Aromox APA-T, are thoroughly investigated. It is a highly-active surfactant used as the gelling agent in aqueous and brine solutions. Commonly used surfactant concentrations (1.5%, 2%, 3% and 4% by volume) are studied. Rheological and viscoelastic measurements are conducted using the Bohlin rheometer. Flow tests are conducted using 1.27-cm, 3.81-cm, 6.03-cm and 7.30-cm tubing.
The results show SB fluid exhibiting a non-Newtonian pseudo-plastic behaviour. Fluid concentration and pipe shear have a significant effect on fluid elasticity. The conventional Fanning friction factor vs. Reynolds number correlation is improved by including a new dimensionless group that accounts for both fluid elasticity and pipe diameter. A new definition of Deborah number is introduced. Thus, a new correlation for predicting friction factors of SB fluid in straight tubing is developed. The scaleup problem is thus alleviated with the present analysis and this provides more accurate friction-pressure estimates.
|File Size||3 MB||Number of Pages||8|
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