Research Papers: Petroleum Engineering

Adaptability Research of Thermal–Chemical Assisted Steam Injection in Heavy Oil Reservoirs

[+] Author and Article Information
Wu Zhengbin, Liu Huiqing, Wang Xue

State Key Laboratory of Petroleum
Resources and Prospecting,
University of Petroleum,
Beijing 102249, China

1Corresponding author.

Contributed by the Petroleum Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF ENERGY RESOURCES TECHNOLOGY. Manuscript received April 23, 2016; final manuscript received October 23, 2017; published online November 28, 2017. Editor: Hameed Metghalchi.

J. Energy Resour. Technol 140(5), 052901 (Nov 28, 2017) (7 pages) Paper No: JERT-16-1185; doi: 10.1115/1.4038405 History: Received April 23, 2016; Revised October 23, 2017

Thermal–chemical flooding (TCF) is an effective alternative to enhance heavy oil recovery after steam injection. In this paper, single and parallel sand-pack flooding experiments were carried out to investigate the oil displacement ability of thermal–chemical composed of steam, nitrogen (N2), and viscosity breaker (VB), considering multiple factors such as residual oil saturation (Sorw) postwater flood, scheme switch time, and permeability contrast. The results of single sand-pack experiments indicated that compared with steam flooding (SF), steam-nitrogen flooding, and steam-VB flooding, TCF had the best displacement efficiency, which was 11.7% higher than that of pure SF. The more serious of water-flooded degree, the poorer of TCF effect. The improvement effect of TCF almost lost as water saturation reached 80%. Moreover, the earlier TCF was transferred from steam injection, the higher oil recovery was obtained. The parallel sand-pack experiments suggested that TCF had good adaptability to reservoir heterogeneity. Emulsions generated after thermal–chemical injection diverted the following compound fluid turning to the low-permeable tube (LPT) due to its capturing and blocking ability. The expansion of N2 and the disturbance of VB promoted oil recovery in both tubes. As reservoir heterogeneity became more serious, namely, permeability contrast was more than 6 in this study, the improvement effect became weaker due to earlier steam channeling in the high-permeable tube (HPT).

Copyright © 2018 by ASME
Your Session has timed out. Please sign back in to continue.


Pang, Z. X. , Liu, H. Q. , and Zhu, L. , 2015, “ A Laboratory Study of Enhancing Heavy Oil Recovery With Steam Flooding by Adding Nitrogen Foams,” J. Pet. Sci. Eng., 128, pp. 184–193. [CrossRef]
Ayala H, L. F. , and Ting, D. , 2015, “ Thermodynamic Analysis of Thermal Responses in Horizontal Wellbores,” ASME J. Energy Resour. Technol., 137(3), p. 032903.
Zhao, D. W. , Wang, J. , and Gates, I. D. , 2013, “ Optimized Solvent-Aided Steam-Flooding Strategy for Recovery of Thin Heavy Oil Reservoirs,” Fuel, 112, pp. 50–59. [CrossRef]
Fatemi, S. M. , and Jamaloei, B. Y. , 2011, “ Preliminary Considerations on the Application of Toe-to-Heel Steam Flooding (THSF): Injection Well–Producer Well Configurations,” Chem. Eng. Res. Des., 89(11), pp. 2365–2379. [CrossRef]
Liu, P. C. , Zheng, H. M. , and Wu, G. H. , 2016, “ Experimental Study and Application of Steam Flooding for Horizontal Well in Ultraheavy Oil Reservoirs,” ASME J. Energy Resour. Technol., 139(1), p. 012908. [CrossRef]
Gao, Y. R. , Liu, S. Q. , and Shen, D. H. , 2003, “ Study on N2 and Solvent Assisted Steam Stimulation in a Super-Heavy Oil Reservoir,” Pet. Explor. Dev., 30(2), pp. 73–75. http://www.cpedm.com/CN/abstract/abstract359.shtml
Zhou, D. Y. , and Yang, D. Y. , 2017, “ Scaling Criteria for Waterflooding and Immiscible CO2 Flooding in Heavy Oil Reservoirs,” ASME J. Energy Resour. Technol., 139(2), p. 022909. [CrossRef]
Wu, H. , Du, Q. , Hou, J. , Li, J. , Gong, R. , Liu, Y. , and Li, Z. , 2017, “ Characterization and Prediction of Gas Breakthrough With Cyclic Steam and Gas Stimulation Technique in an Offshore Heavy Oil Reservoir,” ASME J. Energy Resour. Technol., 139(3), p. 032801. [CrossRef]
Li, H. H. , Bi, W. W. , and Xu, X. W. , 2013, “ Study on Production Technology of HDCS for Super and Extra Heavy Oil Production in Mid-Deep Formation,” Spec. Oil Gas Reservoirs, 20(2), pp. 87–89.
Palisch, T. , Duenckel, R. , and Wilson, B. , 2015, “ New Technology Yields Ultrahigh-Strength Proppant,” SPE Prod. Oper., 30(1), pp. 76–81. [CrossRef]
Wang, C. J. , Liu, H. Q. , Zheng, Q. , Liu, Y. G. , and Dong, X. H. , 2015, “ A New High-Temperature Gel for Profile Control in Heavy Oil Reservoirs,” ASME J. Energy Resour. Technol., 138(2), p. 022901. [CrossRef]
You, Q. , Dai, C. L. , Tang, Y. C. , and Guan, P. , 2013, “ Study on Performance Evaluation of Dispersed Particle Gel for Improved Oil Recovery,” ASME J. Energy Resour. Technol., 135(4), p. 042903. [CrossRef]
Wu, Z. B. , Pang, Z. X. , Liu, H. Q. , Wang, D. W. , Wang, C. L. , Wang, C. J. , Zilu, Y. , and Yinuo, C. , 2015, “ A Visible Experiment on Adoption of High-Temperature Gel for Improving the Development Effect of Steam Flooding in Heavy Oil Reservoirs,” Acta Pet. Sin., 36(11), pp. 1421–1426.
Guillen, V. R. , Carvalho, M. S. , and Alvarado, V. , 2012, “ Pore Scale and Macroscopic Displacement Mechanisms in Emulsion Flooding,” Transp. Porous Media, 94(1), pp. 197–206. [CrossRef]
Li, Z. M. , Lu, T. , Tao, L. , Li, B. F. , Zhang, J. G. , and Li, J. , 2011, “ CO2 and Viscosity Breaker Assisted Steam Huff and Puff Technology for Horizontal Wells in a Super-Heavy Oil Reservoir,” Pet. Explor. Dev., 38(5), pp. 600–605. [CrossRef]
McAuliffe, C. D. , 1973, “ Oil-in-Water Emulsions and Their Flow Properties in Porous Media,” J. Pet. Technol., 25(6), pp. 727–733. [CrossRef]


Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 1

Viscosity–temperature relationship curve of crude oil

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 2

Schematic of the single sand-pack flooding experiments

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 3

Oil recovery versus injected PV

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 4

Dynamic variation of oil recovery percentage: (a) steam, (b) steam + VB, (c) steam + VB + N2, and (d) comparison of oil recovery of the three displacement fluids under different water saturations

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 5

Oil recovery percentage versus injected PV

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 6

Comparison of ultimate recovery

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 7

Dynamic characteristic of PC = 2: (a)–(c) dynamic variation of experiment ①–③, respectively, and (d) the comparison of oil recovery percentage

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 8

Dynamic characteristic of PC = 4: (a)–(c) dynamic variation of experiment ①–③, respectively, and (d) the comparison of oil recovery percentage

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 9

Dynamic characteristic of PC = 6: (a)–(c) dynamic variation of experiment ①–③, respectively, (d) the comparison of oil recovery percentage



Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging and repositioning the boxes below.

Related Journal Articles
Related eBook Content
Topic Collections

Sorry! You do not have access to this content. For assistance or to subscribe, please contact us:

  • TELEPHONE: 1-800-843-2763 (Toll-free in the USA)
  • EMAIL: asmedigitalcollection@asme.org
Sign In