The Role of Bubble Formation in Oil Recovery by Solution Gas Drives in Limestones
- C.R. Stewart (Stanolind Oil and Gas Co.) | E.B. Hunt Jr. (Stanolind Oil and Gas Co.) | F.N. Schneider (Stanolind Oil and Gas Co.) | T.M. Geffen (Stanolind Oil and Gas Co.) | V.J. Berry Jr. (Stanolind Oil and Gas Co.)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- Journal of Petroleum Technology
- Publication Date
- December 1954
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 21 - 28
- 1954. Original copyright American Institute of Mining, Metallurgical, and Petroleum Engineers, Inc. Copyright has expired.
- 5.2.1 Phase Behavior and PVT Measurements, 4.1.5 Processing Equipment, 5.8.7 Carbonate Reservoir, 4.6 Natural Gas, 1.6.9 Coring, Fishing, 5.7.2 Recovery Factors, 4.1.2 Separation and Treating
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Laboratory data show that the gas-oil ratio perforce of non-uniform porosity limestones produced by solution gas drive is sensitive to producing rate and to fluid properties. Non-uniform porosity lime st ones are those for which laboratory solution and external gas drive tests yield considerably different relative permeability ratio characteristics.
The oil recovery performance by solution gas drive depends directly on the number of gas bubbles formed. Laboratory rates of pressure decline, which are 100 to 10,000 times greater than normal field rates, cause the formation of an unusually large number of gas bubbles. This results in abnormally high oil recovery efficiencies, Since it is impractical to reproduce the number of bubbles formed under field conditions, laboratory solution gas drive data on non-uniform porosity limestones are therefore not directly applicable to field operations. However, certain laboratory data can be used to make a conservative estimate of field performance.
The concepts presented in this paper indicate the possibility that increased field oil recoveries may be obtained from non-uniform porosity limestones by rapidly reducing reservoir pressure for a short interval of time. It has yet to be established that significant improvements in oil recovery from such reservoirs can be realized by varying the pressure decline rate within limits possible in the field. However, the possibility that recovery may be increased in this manner warrants further study.
Limestone reservoir rocks can be divided into two general classes according to the nature of their pore space. One class has a comparatively uniform pore system composed mainly of voids between grains of the rock (intergranular type porosity). The other class, in addition to having intergranular porosity, has a secondary pore system composed of combinations of solution cavities, fractures, etc., and is considered to have non-uniform porosity.
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