A Molecular Dynamics Study of Soaking During Enhanced Oil Recovery in Shale Organic Pores
- Felipe Perez (University of Oklahoma) | Deepak Devegowda (University of Oklahoma)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- SPE Journal
- Publication Date
- April 2020
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 832 - 841
- 2020.Society of Petroleum Engineers
- in-situ fractionation, molecular simulations, enhanced oil recovery, soaking time, liquid-rich shales
- 23 in the last 30 days
- 166 since 2007
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In this work we use molecular dynamics simulations to investigate the interactions during soaking time between an organic solvent (pure ethane) initially in a microfracture and a mixture of hydrocarbons representative of a volatile oil, and other reservoir fluids such as carbon dioxide and water, originally saturating an organic pore network with a predominant pore size of 2.5 nm. We present evidence of the in-situ fractionation in liquid-rich shales and its implications in enhanced oil recovery (EOR) projects. We also discuss the behavior of the larger and heavier molecules in the fluid mixture while the solvent interacts with them. Notably, prior to solvent invasion of the pores and further mixing with the reservoir fluids, the heavier hydrocarbons in the mixture are initially adsorbed onto the pore surface and pore throats surface, partially clogging them. We show that the porous structure of kerogen and the presence of adsorbed molecules of asphaltenes and resins in the pore throats act as a molecular sieve and may be one of the reasons for the fractionation of the reservoir fluids. The differing ability of the solvent to desorb and mix with different hydrocarbon species is another reason for the fractionation occurring during soaking. Our simulations show that the production of reservoir fluids occurs due to a countercurrent diffusive flow from the organic pore network to the microfracture driven by the concentration gradient between the two regions.
|File Size||27 MB||Number of Pages||10|
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