The First Successful Chemical EOR Pilot in the UAE: One Spot Pilot in High Temperature, High Salinity Carbonate Reservoir

Al-Amrie, Omar (ADNOC) | Peltier, Sophie (ADNOC) | Pearce, Adrian (ADNOC) | Abu-Dhabi, Total (ADNOC) | Al-Yafei, Arafat (ADNOC) | Morel, Danielle (Total SA) | Bourrel, Maurice (Total SA) | Bursaux, Romain (Total SA) | Cordelier, Philippe (Total SA) | Jouenne, Stephane (Total SA) | Juilla, Hugo (Total SA) | Klimenko, Alexandra (Total SA) | Levitt, David (Total SA) | Nguyen, Michel (Total SA)



In 2014, Total performed a surfactant-polymer single-well pilot to test the effectiveness of a surfactant formulation developed in-house, and including a new proprietary class of surfactants with improved temperature- and salinity-tolerance characteristics. This paper unveils the results of this pilot which targeted a high temperature, high salinity carbonate reservoir. The operations were performed on an oil bearing reservoir of Lower Cretaceous age, in an offshore field operated by Total since 1974 and located 180 km offshore Abu Dhabi. Dedicated topsides were designed and installed for this EOR project. Extensive in-house laboratory studies were performed to select and synthesize the chemicals. Specific simulations, using laboratory results as input, were carried out to predict the pilot performance, design the Single Well Tracer Tests (SWTTs), and size the equipment.

In this paper we will discuss the workflow used to select the most appropriate well and present the methods and results used to characterize the reservoir. Then we will relate it to the surfactant-polymer injection field operations. Finally the reservoir monitoring activities that were necessary to preserve reservoir integrity and demonstrate the pilot efficiency will be described.

The strong decrease in remaining oil saturation measured after the chemical EOR pilot clearly proves the effectiveness of the chemicals synthesized by Total to mobilize the remaining immobile oil after water-flood.

These positive outcomes change the perception of CEOR in hot, saline Middle-East carbonate reservoirs, and could be a "game changer".