E3S Web Conf.
Volume 89, 2019The 2018 International Symposium of the Society of Core Analysts (SCA 2018)
|Number of page(s)||8|
|Section||Displacement Mechanisms / EOR|
|Published online||29 March 2019|
Rheology-based method for calculating polymer inaccessible pore volume in core flooding experiments
Department of Energy, School of Mechanical Engineering, University of Campinas
* corresponding author: firstname.lastname@example.org
Polymer flooding is an enhanced oil recovery (EOR) method that reduces the mobility ratio between the displaced oil and the displacing injected water. The flow of polymer solutions through porous media is subject to some process-specific phenomena, such as the inaccessible pore volume (IAPV). Due to IAPV, polymer molecules move faster through the porous medium than smaller ones. Thus the IAPV value needs to be accounted for in experiments and field projects. Recent reports found that polymer in-situ rheology correlates with the IAPV. The objective of this paper is to develop a method for estimating IAPV based on the in-situ rheology of polymers. The methodology proposed here can be used in both single- and two-phase experiments. The technique requires measurement of polymer resistance factor (RF) and residual resistance factor (RRF) at steady state conditions. Core permeability, porosity, and residual oil saturation, as well as water and polymer bulk viscosities, also need to be taken into account. Correlations for polymer in-situ viscosity and shear rate are solved simultaneously, to wield an estimative for the IAPV. Aiming at to prove the method, we report 16 core-flooding experiments, eight single- and eight two-phase experiments. We used a flexible polymer and sandstone cores. All the tests were run using similar rock samples. In the single-phase experiments, we compare the alternative method with the classic tracer method to estimate IAPV. The results show an average relative difference of 11.5% between the methods. The two-phase results display, on average, an 18% relative difference to the IAPV measured in the single-phase experiments. The difference between single- and two-phase results can be an effect of the higher shear rates experienced in the two-phase floodings since, in these cases, the aqueous phase shear rate is also dependent on the phase saturation. Additionally, temperature, core length, pore pressure, and iron presence on the core did not show any influence on the IAPV for our two-phase experiments. The method proposed in this paper is limited by the accuracy of the pressure drop measurements across the core. For flexible polymers, the method is valid only for low and mid shear rates, but, accoording to literature, for rigid polymers the method should be accurate for a broad range of shear rates. The method proposed here allows the measurement of polymer IAPV on two- and single- phase core-flooding experiments when a tracer is not used.
© The Authors, published by EDP Sciences, 2019
This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License 4.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
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