Evaluation of Terpolymer-Gel Systems Crosslinked by Polyethylenimine for Conformance Improvement in High-Temperature Reservoirs

Zhu, Daoyi (China University of Petroleum, Beijing) | Hou, Jirui (China University of Petroleum, Beijing) | Chen, Yuguang (China University of Petroleum, Beijing) | Wei, Qi (China University of Petroleum, Beijing) | Zhao, Shuda (Missouri University of Science and Technology) | Bai, Baojun (China University of Petroleum, Beijing, at Karamay and Missouri University of Science and Technology)



A terpolymer-gel system using low toxic polyethylenimine (PEI) as the crosslinker was developed for conformance improvement in high-temperature reservoirs. Suitable gelation time (GT), gel strength, and thermal stability could be obtained by selecting PEI molecular weight and adjusting terpolymer concentrations. With the increase of terpolymer concentration, GT decreases and the gel strength increases. However, in this research, the effect of PEI concentration on the gelation performance was much less obvious than that of the polymer concentration. Very low concentrations of sodium chloride (NaCl) can slightly shorten the GT. After critical concentrations were reached, the authors determined that the ions will delay the crosslinking reaction. Moreover, the addition of sodium carbonate (Na2CO3) can also lengthen GT. The gel systems were able to maintain thermal stability at 150°C. Uniformly distributed 3D network microstructures and the small size of the gel-grid pores made the network structure maintain thermal stability. The use of the terpolymergel-system gelation mechanism crosslinked by PEI can help petroleum engineers better understand and apply this terpolymer-gel system.