In a past decade, various nanoparticle experiments have been initiated for improved/enhanced oil recovery (IOR/EOR) project by worldwide petroleum researchers and it has been recognized as a promising agent for IOR/EOR at laboratory scale. A hydrophilic silica nanoparticle with average primary particle size of 7 nm was chosen for this study. Nanofluid was synthesized using synthetic reservoir brine. In this paper, experimental study has been performed to evaluate oil recovery using nanofluid injection onto several water-wet Berea sandstone core plugs.
Three injection schemes associated with nanofluid were performed: 1) nanofluid flooding as secondary recovery process, 2) brine flooding as tertiary recovery processs (following after nanofluid flooding at residual oil saturation), and 3) nanofluid flooding as tertiary recovery process. Interfacial tension (IFT) has been measured using spinning drop method between synthetic oil and brine/nanofluid. It observed that IFT decreased when nanoparticles were introduced to brine.
Compare with brine flooding as secondary recovery, nanofluid flooding almost reach 8% higher oil recovery (% of original oil in place/OOIP) onto Berea cores. The nanofluid also reduced residual oil saturation in the range of 2-13% of pore volume (PV) at core scale. In injection scheme 2, additional oil recovery from brine flooding only reached less than 1% of OOIP. As tertiary recovery, nanofluid flooding reached additional oil recovery of almost 2% of OOIP. The IFT reduction may become a part of recovery mechanism in our studies. The essential results from our experiments showed that nanofluid flooding have more potential in improving oil recovery as secondary recovery compared to tertiary recovery.
The oil and gas industry must face the challenges to unlock the resources that are becoming increasingly difficult to reach with conventional technology. Most oil fields around the world have achieved the stage where the total production rate is nearing the decline phase. Hence, the current major challenge is how to delay the abandonment by extracting more oil economically. The latest worldwide industries innovation trends in miniaturization and nanotechnology material. A nanoparticle, as a part of nanotechnology, has size typically less than 100 nm. Its size is much smaller than rock pore throat in micron size. A nanoparticle fluid suspension, so called nanofluid, is synthesized from nano-sized particles and dispersed in liquids such as water, oil or ethylene glycol.
Through continuously increasing of publication addressed on the topic, nanofluid has showed its potential as IOR/EOR in the past decade. It has motivated us to perform research study to reveal the recovery mechanism and performance of nanofluid in porous medium. We focus on liphopobic and hydrophilic silica nanoparticles (LHP). Miranda et al. (2012) has mentioned the benefit of using silica nanoparticles. It is inorganic material that easier produced with a good degree of control/modify of physical chemistry properties. It can also be easily surface functionalized from hydrophobic to hydrophilic by silanization with hydroxyl group or sulfonic acid. Ju et al. (2006) has initially observed LHP with size range 10-500 nm could improve oil recovery with around 9% (with LHP concentration 0.02 vol. %) compared with pure water. They explained that the recovery mechanism involves wettability alteration of reservoir rock due to adsorbed LHP. Besides, they also reported the porosity and permeability impairment of sandpacks during nanofluid flooding.
Water-or oil-based drilling fluid is the first foreign fluid that contacts the reservoir zone of a borehole. Most muds contain particles that are part of the mud formulation. These desirable mud solids can cause severe formation damage in the presence of a poor quality mudcake. Moreover, the cutting debris generated while drilling may produce enough micro-sized and colloidal particles to cause severe formation damage if a poor quality mudcake is deposited on the borehole wall. Hence, drilling muds that are unable to form a well-dispersed, tight, thin, plasterlike external mudcake on the borehole wall can cause serious formation damage because of the formation of an internal mudcake.
Hendraningrat, Luky (Norwegian University of Science and Technology) | Shidong, Li (Norwegian University of Science and Technology) | Suwarno, _ (Norwegian University of Science and Technology) | Torsaeter, Ole (Norwegian University of Science and Technology)
A number of researchers put on attention on nanoparticles suspension (nanofluids) as part of nanotechnology application in enhanced oil recovery (EOR) nowadays. This experimental study is preliminary stage of nanofluids for EOR project at NTNU. This paper presents the investigation of interfacial tension reduction, nanoparticles retention and permeability impairment in porous media by injecting nanoparticles suspension into glass micromodel. The deposition and pore-blockage of nanoparticles in glass micromodel were investigated and microscopically visualized by taking sequential images. A hydrophilic nanoparticles and synthetic seawater (brine, NaCl 3 wt. %) as base fluid were chosen in this study. The nanofluids were made with various concentration from 0.1 to 1.0 wt. %. The sonicator as liquid homogenization tool was used just before injecting the nanofluids into glass micromodel to avoid agglomeration.
A dynamic interfacial tension (IFT) phenomenon has observed during this experiment. Introducing dispersed nanoparticles in brine has reduced dynamic IFT. It will decrease when increasing nanoparticles concentration. Theoretically, it makes oil easier to move out since the friction force between water-phase and oil-phase will also decrease (Afrapoli, 2010).
Based on microscopic visualization from glass micromodel, it observed nanoparticle has deposited and adsorbed at surface pore network. In permeability measurement, it reduced 41-72% after injected with nanoparticles. Dynamic light scattering analysis is also performed for nanoparticles entrapment analysis. Another nanoparticles which has bigger average size and lower specific surface area, showed similar behavior with previous nanoparticles suspension. However the permeability reduction is less around 17-21% at similar nanofluids concentration.
In conclusion, this phenomenon of nanoparticles transport process possibly occurs due to its deposition on pore surface and blockage in pore throat of glass micromodel. This study provides essential knowledge for us of nanoparticles behavior in pore media before going further experiment stage to as EOR method.
The productivity and economics of horizontal wells are governed by the ability of the transverse fractures to communicate efficiently with the wellbore, which is strongly controlled by the conductivity of the proppant bed and the effectiveness of the fluid additives. These impact the relative permeability, the capillary pressure and the effective conductivity in the proppant bed. If the wellbore is high in the fracture, gravity segregation will cause liquid removal from the lower portion of the fracture to be very difficult. In low conductivity proppant beds, capillary pressure will tend to retain high water saturations, thus lower the effective conductivity even for the portions of the fracture above the wellbore.
Laboratory and field studies are presented comparing various sizes and types of proppants and the influence of surfactants used in oil bearing formations including commonly used demulsifiers and a multi-phase complex nano fluid system. Ammot cell and centrifuge tests were used to evaluate imbibition of oil and water. Columns packed with proppant and formation cuttings are used to compare the effectiveness of various additives in allowing the displacement of water and establishing oil flow. Results are correlated with interfacial tension, contact angle, capillary pressures and surface energies of actual formation materials, oils and treating fluids from the Niobrara, Bakken, Granite Wash and Eagleford formations. Simulations are presented that show the impact of capillary pressure and oil viscosity on the displacement of fluids.
Field results from various fields including the Niobrara, Bakken, and Marcellus formations are presented. The normalized field data shows that wells with higher conductivity proppants and properly selected surfactant packages result in longer effective frac lengths and greater normalized oil and gas production. Correlations are made between the observed relative perms in the lab vs. the observed field results.
Habibi, Ali (U. of Tehran) | Al-Hadrami, Hamoud Khalfan H. (Sultan Qaboos University) | Al-ajmi, Adel M. (Sultan Qaboos U.) | Al-wahaibi, Yahya Mansoor (Sultan Qaboos University) | Ayatollahi, Shahabbodin (Shiraz University)
Fines migration is the major reason for productivity decline known as formation damage in oil reservoirs. Sandstone formations are sensitive to brine salinity alteration which disturbs equilibrium condition in porous media. Because of nonequilibrium condition fines migration occurs during various operations. Nanoparticles seem to be good candidates to strengthen the attractive forces between fines and pore wall due to very small size, high specific surface area and electrical surface charge.
In this experimental study, several tests were performed using Berea sandstone (8 wt% clays) cores (3 in. length and 1.5 in. diameter). MgO nanoparticles were stabilized in the water uniformly using surface active agent and ultrasonication. Total dimensionless energy of interaction between nano particles in the suspensions was calculated based on the DLVO theory. Various core flooding tests were conducted to determine the effect of MgO nanofluid injection as clay stabilizer at different brine salinities on the cores with the permeability from 600-100 md. The pressure drop across the core was measured.
The results indicated that the MgO nanofluid could fix fines effectively where brine salinity became lower than CSC. Besides, measured zeta potential and total energy of interaction calculation confirmed that repulsive force became dominant at the specific concentration of the complex nanofluid which ensures its stability for long time during core flooding tests.
Thus, MgO nanofluid significantly prevented water shock problem. Also, no significant reduction in permeability was noticed in any of core flood tests.
Fines are loose silica based particles present in the sandstone formation, which can detach and move easily as a result of ionic strength reduction or pH increase of injected fluid. Migratory fine particles can trap at throat levels which lead to permeability reduction of formation. Colloidal and hydrodynamic forces are found to be responsible for the fines detachment and their release from the pore surfaces. London Van der Waals attraction, double layer forces are the most dominant forces in the detachment of fines from porous media based on the DLVO theory (Khilar and Fogler, 1998; Schramm, et al, 1996; Ahmadi et al, 2011). Hibbeler et al, (2003) provide an excellent review on the practical recipes to reduce fines migration.
Nanoparticle dispersions (NPDs) are an emerging new technology in the oil and gas industry which can be applied to EOR, well remediation, and formation damage removal to stimulate hydrocarbon production using the unique properties that colloidal particles possess. Nanoparticles have a high surface area to volume ratio allowing a greater efficiency for chemical interactions to occur. However, nanoparticle dispersions are often difficult to stabilize in harsh downhole environments. The dispersion can quickly become unstable and agglomerate when the fluid is subjected to changes in pH, or encounters increased salinity and/or temperature. Agglomeration renders the fluid ineffective, and at worst can cause severe damage to the formation. The development of highly concentrated nanoparticle dispersions stable in high TDS brine at high temperatures has been achieved and verified in the laboratory with imbibition tests and dynamic core flow experiments.
NPDs can be stabilized in the reservoir by altering charge density, hydrodynamic diameter, and the zeta potential of the particles. This is accomplished by surface modification, as well as with the addition of stabilizing chemistry.
This paper presents solutions to the destabilizing elements encountered in the reservoir, that until now have inhibited the downhole utilization of nanoparticle dispersions. Stability research of NPD fluids in brines empirically illustrates that by chemically modifying the particle surface and the surrounding aqueous environment, the fluids will remain properly dispersed and active in destabilizing bottomhole conditions. This will further pave the way for industry research into new applications of nanoparticle based fluid systems.
Regarding the most reservoirs around the world are experiencing their second half of life, the need for an appropriate EOR method utilizing efficient new technologies gets more important. Nanotechnology is an advanced technology finding its place in EOR processes as it provides a high potential for oil and gas recovery.
In this study, a special type of polysilicon nanoparticle (HLP, Hydrophobic and Lipophilic Polysilicon) is investigated as an EOR agent during different water injection scenarios. The water-wet sandstone core samples are employed. Injection of HLP nanoparticle dispersed in a carrier fluid can improve oil recovery through two mechanisms: reduction of interfacial tension and wettability alteration. Reduction of interfacial tension improves pore-scale displacement efficiency. In addition, wettability alteration towards less water-wet condition provides an ideal wetting state increasing oil recovery. Three scenarios of HLP nanofluid injections are applied. First, the nanofluid is injected after waterflooding at ultimate oil saturation. Second, 3 pore-volume water injection is applied after the sequence of water and HLP nanofluid injections. Third, HLP nanofluid is injected from beginning. HLP nanofluid application lowers the oil-water interfacial tension by a factor of ten as well as changing the contact angle from 123° to 99°indicating less water wet condition. The experienced oil recoveries and pressure drops during the experiments are reported for each scenario. In all scenarios, the most of oil recovered through the first injected pore volume. According to oil recoveries, nanofluid injection from the beginning can enhance oil production considerably in compare to the other ones. Moreover, pressure drop data indicate severe permeability impairment after three pore-volume injection of nanofluids. Experimentally, nanotechnology has proved its potential to enhance oil recovery however many aspects are still in progress to be known.
Salama, Amgad (King Abdullah University of Sc) | Azamatov, Abdulaziz (Konkuk University) | El-amin, Mohamed Fathy (KAUST) | Sun, Shuyu (King Abdullah U of Science & Tech) | Huang, Huancong (King Abdullah University of Science and Technology)
In this work, the problem of flow and heat transfer of nanofluids in spirally fluted tubes is investigated numerically using the CFD code Fluent. The tube investigated in this work is characterized by the existence of helical ridging which is usually obtained by embossing a smooth tube. A tube of diameter of 15 mm, 1.5 mm groove depth and a single helix with pitch of 64 mm is chosen for simulation. This geometry has been chosen for simulation because it has been investigated experimentally for pure fluids and would, therefore, provide a verification framework with our CFD model. The result of our CFD investigation compares very well with the experimental work conducted on this tube geometry. Interesting patterns are highlighted and investigated including the existence of flow swirl as a result of the existence of the spirally enhanced ridges. This swirl flow enhances heat transfer characteristics of this system as reported in the literatures. This study also shows that further enhancement is achieved if small amount of nanoparticles are introduced to the fluid. These nanoparticles (metallic-based nanoparticles) when introduced to the fluid enhances its heat transfer characteristics.
Copyright 2012, Society of Petroleum Engineers This paper was prepared for presentation at the SPE International Oilfield Nanotechnology Conference held in Noordwijk, The Netherlands, 12-14 June 2012. This paper was selected for presentation by an SPE program committee following review of information contained in an abstract submitted by the author(s). Contents of the paper have not been reviewed by the Society of Petroleum Engineers and are subject to correction by the author(s). The material does not necessarily reflect any position of the Society of Petroleum Engineers, its officers, or members. Electronic reproduction, distribution, or storage of any part of this paper without the written consent of the Society of Petroleum Engineers is prohibited.
Nanotechnology has contributed to the technological advances in various industries, such as medicine, electronics, biomaterials and renewable energy production over the last decade. Recently, a renewed interest arises in the application of nanotechnology for the upstream petroleum industry; such as exploration, drilling, production and distribution. In particular, adding nanoparticles to fluids may drastically benefit enhanced oil recovery and improve well drilling, such as changing the properties of the fluid, wettability alternation of rocks, advanced drag reduction, strengthening sand consolidation, reducing the interfacial tension and increasing the mobility of the capillary-trapped oil. In this study, we focus on the fundamental understanding of the role of nanoparticles on the oil-water binary mixture in a confined nanochannel. A series of computational experiments of oil-water-nanoparticle flow behaviour in confined clay nanochannels are carried out by molecular dynamics simulations. Three sizes of nanochannels and different numbers of nanoparticles are considered. The results show that the pressure to drive the oil-water binary mixture through a periodic confined channel increases dramatically with the reduction of the channel size. In the absence of nanoparticles the pressure increases with the propelled displacement. Interestingly, an opposite behavior is observed in the oil-water system mixed with a small amount of nanoparticles: the pressure decreases with the increase of the displacement. The findings from molecular dynamics simulations may elucidate the role of nanoparticles on the transport of oil in nanoscale porous media, although the exact mechanisms remain to be further explored.