Content of PetroWiki is intended for personal use only and to supplement, not replace, engineering judgment. SPE disclaims any and all liability for your use of such content. In the context of injectors, tracers are chemicals placed in the flow stream of an injector to determine that the water takes from an injector to the producing wells.
In-situ combustion is the oldest thermal recovery technique. It has been used for more than nine decades with many economically successful projects. In-situ combustion is regarded as a high-risk process by many, primarily because of the many failures of early field tests. Most of those failures came from the application of a good process to the wrong reservoirs or the poorest prospects. The objective of this page is to describe the potential of in-situ combustion as an economically viable oil recovery technique for a variety of reservoirs.
ISC is basically injection of an oxidizing gas (air or oxygen-enriched air) to generate heat by burning a portion of resident oil. Most of the oil is driven toward the producers by a combination of gasdrive (from the combustion gases), steam, and waterdrive. This process is also called fire flooding to describe the movement of a burning front inside the reservoir. Based on the respective directions of front propagation and air flow, the process can be forward (when the combustion front advances in the same direction as the air flow) or reverse (when the front moves against the air flow). This process has been studied extensively in laboratories and tried in the field.
Equipment for monitoring and control are important elements of any coiled tubing unit. The control-console design for the coiled-tubing (CT) unit may vary with manufacturers, but normally, all controls are positioned on one remote console panel. A diagram of a typical well-intervention unit control panel is seen in Figure 1. The skid-mounted console may be placed where needed at the wellsite as desired by the operator. The reel and injector motors are activated from the control panel through valves that determine the direction of tubing motion and operating speed.
The coiled tubing (CT) injector is the equipment component used to grip the continuous-length tubing and provide the forces needed for deployment and retrieval of the tube into and out of the wellbore. Figure 1 illustrates a typical rig-up of a CT injector and well-control stack on a wellhead. There are several types of counter-rotating, chaindrive injectors working within the industry, and the manner in which the gripper blocks are loaded onto the tubing varies depending on design. These types of injectors manipulate the continuous tubing string using two opposed sprocketdrive traction chains, which are powered by counter-rotating hydraulic motors. Figure 1--CT injector and typical well-control stack rig-up (courtesy of SAS Industries Inc.).
There are several coiled-tubing (CT) equipment manufacturers presently marketing various designs of CT injectors, service tubing reels, and related well-control equipment in the industry today. At present, the predominant equipment design for CT well-intervention and drilling services incorporates the vertically mounted, counter-rotating chaindrive type of injector. The CT unit is a portable, hydraulically powered service system that is designed to inject and retrieve a continuous string of tubing concentric to larger-inside diameter (ID) production tubing or casing strings. At the present time, CT manufactured for well intervention and drilling application is available in sizes ranging from 0.750 to 3.500 in. A simplified illustration of a CT unit is shown in Figure 1.
The service reel serves as the coiled tubing(CT) storage apparatus during transport, and as the spooling device during CT well-intervention and drilling operations. The inboard end of the CT may be connected either to the hollow segment of the reel shaft (spoke and axle design), or to a high-pressure piping segment (concave flange plates), both of which are then connected to a high-pressure rotating swivel. This high-pressure fluid swivel is secured to a stationary piping manifold, which provides connection to the treatment-fluid pumping system. As a result, continuous pumping and circulation can be maintained throughout the job. A high-pressure shutoff valve should be installed between the CT and reel shaft swivel for emergency use in isolating the tubing from the surface pump lines.
The objective of scaleup is to take the behavior predicted from detailed, fine-grid reference models that at best represent only a few wells and a tiny part of the reservoir and transfer it to a model that attempts to represent many wells and the integrated behavior of the entire compositionally enhanced solvent flood (or at least a significant portion of it). Jerauld is a good example of the application of this method. Several reference models describe different areas of the field. Water/oil, solvent/oil, and solvent/water pseudorelative permeability relations are developed, along with pseudotrapped-solvent and solvent-flood residual oil values, so that the relevant behavior of the reference models is reproduced by corresponding models that have the same coarse grids as the full-field model.
A passive tracer that labels gas or water in a well-to-well tracer test must fulfill the following criteria. The tracers discussed in the following sections have properties that make them suitable for application in well-to-well test in which dilution volumes are large. For small fields in which the requirement with respect to dilution is less important, other tracers can be applied. Figure 1.1 – Production curve of S14CN compared with the production curve of HTO in a dynamic flooding laboratory test (carbonate rock) (after Bjørnstad and Maggio). There are no possibilities for thermal degradation, and it follows the water closely. The 36Cl- is a long-lived nuclide (3 105 years), and the detection method is atomic mass spectroscopy rather than radiation measurements.
Tracers are used in geothermal reservoir engineering to determine the connectivity between injection and production wells. Because injected fluids are much cooler than in-situ fluids, knowledge of injectate flow paths helps mitigate premature thermal breakthrough. As in other applications of tracer testing, the goal of the tracer test is to estimate sweep efficiency of a given injection pattern. Because geothermal systems tend to be open, tracer tests can also be used to estimate the extent of recharge/discharge or total pore volume. Currently, however, the primary use of geothermal tracers is to estimate the degree of connectivity between injectors and producers.