Title : Experimental Investigation Of The Influence Of Nanofluid–Alternating-Brine (NAB) Flooding On Oil Recovery In Niger Delta Sandstone Reservoir Rocks
A common challenge to operators in both offshore and onshore oil fields globally is continuous decline in production as these fields reach their maturity stages. This has elicited efforts to exploiting the unconventional reservoirs, and delving into unexplored deep and ultra-deep-water territories, which are highly associated with myriads of risks and uncertainties. Alternatively, and preferably, many countries have begun to channel technical efforts towards maximising recovery from existing fields. This is because this option provides less risk and uncertainty as compared to the green or new fields. Oil recovery by primary and secondary processes yields about 35 to 50% of the Original Oil in Place (OOIP). The remaining is trapped by capillary forces as droplets or ganglia. An Enhanced Oil Recovery process must be able to mobilise the trapped droplets or oil blobs and to create an oil bank that can be efficiently propagated to the production well.
Nanotechnology has proven to offer some solutions to mitigate the present-day challenges of the oil and gas industry. It has the potential to transform EOR processes and mechanisms. Studies have shown that nanoparticles dispersed in injected fluid (such as brine) have the potential to increase recovery beyond the levels recorded for secondary recovery. However, the synergetic effect of flooding nanofluid and brine (secondary recovery) alternately is yet to be explored.
The research investigated three (3) different recovery mechanisms to infer the mechanism that resulted in the maximum oil recovery. The recovery mechanisms examined were brine flooding, nanofluid flooding and nanofluid-alternating-brine (NAB) flooding. The flooding experiments were carried out on typical core samples obtained from Niger Delta sandstone reservoirs. Amorphous (less harmful) silica nanoparticles with a defined range of size dispersed in brine were deployed for the nanofluid flooding.
The results indicated that the overall recovery factor of the NAB flooding was higher than those recorded for both brine and simple nanofluid flooding. More so, the recovery by nanofluid generally improved with increasing concentration of nanoparticles until a threshold limit was reached beyond which no further recovery was achieved. Therefore, the potential of NAB flooding for improved oil recovery needs to be harnessed to ensure cost-effective reserves addition from existing and mature Niger Delta fields
Audience take away:
• The audience would learn the applications of nanotechnology in enhancing oil recovery from some sandstone reservoirs.
• Faculty in petroleum engineering and allied courses can use this knowledge in advanced heat transfer, automotive, electronic, biomedical and other applicationss.