Crossflow effects on low salinity displacement in stratified heterogeneity

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Title: Crossflow effects on low salinity displacement in stratified heterogeneity
Authors: Ladipo, L
Blunt, MJ
King, PR
Item Type: Journal Article
Abstract: Crossflow is a major factor affecting recovery efficiency in heterogeneous permeable media. In typical water-oil displacements, viscous-dominated crossflow improves oil recovery efficiency relative to no-crossflow depending on the shock-front and/or the mobility ratio across the displacement front. Its impact is not yet fully understood for augmented or engineered waterfloods such as controlled/low salinity waterflooding (LSWF). This is critical in such a flood with two distinct displacement shock-fronts – unlike a standard waterflood – that are potentially influenced by mixing of the brines which further complicates the crossflow behaviour. This paper presents a comprehensive treatment of crossflow effects on recovery or displacement efficiency along stratified media of contrasting properties during LSWF considering physical dispersion. We define dimensionless numbers to characterize no-crossflow, viscous- and gravity-dominated crossflow regimes for different mobility-ratios. In two-dimensional numerical simulations, we explore the influence of property contrasts and mobility-ratios across the two distinct shock-fronts on the viscous crossflow behaviour in a LSWF. The sensitivity of viscous crossflow recovery and (low-salinity) engineered-water sweep efficiency to mobility-ratios is evaluated at different performance times relative to no-crossflow displacement. Viscous crossflow (VC) is found to be relevant in water-oil displacements for permeability contrasts less than or equal to 1000, but less important for EOR low-salinity displacement once the permeability contrast exceeds 50. For the mobility-ratio cases considered, VC is unidirectional – from the fast to slow layer – only when the mobility-ratios across the two distinct shock-fronts are both favourable. Unlike a typical water-oil displacement, the weak dependency of late-time recovery efficiency on VC is observed to be a function of the mobility-ratio and dispersion in LSWF. An unfavourable mobility-ratio case is identified for viscous-dominated crossflow effects that is specific to low-salinity displacements. Ways to improve the flood design to ensure favourable displacement are presented. The findings of this study can help for better understanding of crossflow behaviour and regimes in reservoir settings, to mitigate any potential unfavourable impact on recovery or displacement efficiency with engineered or low-salinity water injection.
Issue Date: Jan-2022
Date of Acceptance: 25-Sep-2021
DOI: 10.1016/j.petrol.2021.109565
ISSN: 0920-4105
Publisher: Elsevier BV
Start Page: 1
End Page: 26
Journal / Book Title: Journal of Petroleum Science and Engineering
Volume: 208
Copyright Statement: © 2021 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. This manuscript is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International Licence
Keywords: 0403 Geology
0904 Chemical Engineering
0914 Resources Engineering and Extractive Metallurgy
Publication Status: Published
Embargo Date: 2022-09-28
Article Number: 109565
Online Publication Date: 2021-09-29
Appears in Collections:Earth Science and Engineering

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