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Permanent link (DOI): https://doi.org/10.7939/R3S46HD9K

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Retrieval of Solvent Injected During Heavy-Oil Recovery in Heterogeneous Porous Media: Pore Scale Analysis through Micro Model Experiments Open Access

Descriptions

Other title
Subject/Keyword
microscale
solvent retrieval
surfactant
Type of item
Thesis
Degree grantor
University of Alberta
Author or creator
Cui, Jingwen
Supervisor and department
Babadagli, Tayfun(Civil and Environmental Engineering)
Examining committee member and department
Ergun, Kuru(Civil and Environmental Engineering)
Li, Huazhou(Civil and Environmental Engineering)
Department
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
Specialization
Petroleum engineering
Date accepted
2016-09-20T11:27:03Z
Graduation date
2016-06:Fall 2016
Degree
Master of Science
Degree level
Master's
Abstract
Solvent retrieval is essential for the economics of the solvent-related heavy-oil recovery technologies. In fractured and oil-wet reservoirs, water-flooding followed by solvent is not suitable to achieve this goal. Two methods can be proposed as solution to solvent retrieval in complex reservoirs: (1) Thermal: Hot water or steam injection to vaporize the solvent; (2) Chemical: Addition of surface active agents to alter wettability for effective matrix-fracture transfer. This thesis aimed to investigate the mechanics of these two methods at the pore-scale. A series of experiments using heterogeneous micro-models were designed for this purpose. The process of solvent vaporization and entrapment during heating followed by solvent injection was evaluated using the images obtained from the experiments. Evaluations were made using the parameters (pore size, wettability, interfacial tension, and solvent type) in the Thomson equation. The nucleation of solvent and the distribution of fluids/phases emerged through this process were qualitatively analyzed. Suitable application conditions (temperature, heating source location) for different solvent types and wettability were determined. Next, selected chemicals (conventional surfactants and new generation –nano-chemicals) were tested as an alternative to solvent injection to recover heavy-oil and as a material to retrieve the solvent instead of applying heat injection methods. Proper chemical types were identified for effective solvent retrieval and heavy-oil recovery from different wettability conditions and solvent types.
Language
English
DOI
doi:10.7939/R3S46HD9K
Rights
This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for the purpose of private, scholarly or scientific research. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.
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