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What is "Trapped Oil"?
"Trapped Oil," also referred to as "stranded oil," is the oil that is normally not recoverable in an oil field/reservoir. A number of reasons may determine the oil to be trapped, mostly related to either geology or economics or a combination of the two.
When an oil well is first completed and oil production begins, this is called the primary oil recovery stage. Anywhere from 5% to 15% of the "original oil in place" (OOIP) in the oil well's reservoir is recovered via "natural" reservoir drive, meaning natural forces drive or displace the oil into the production well's well bore.
The secondary oil recovery stage is where additional production measures are installed wherein anywhere from 10% to 30% of the original oil in place is recovered. When the secondary oil recovery stage is complete - and ready for Enhanced Oil Recovery - 55% to 85% of the original oil in place remains. At this point, many companies may determine that the economics are not justified to recover the remaining "trapped oil" and may decide to plug and abandon the well.
What is ASP Flooding?
"ASP Flooding" or "Alkaline Surfactant Polymer" Flooding is one of the leading "Chemical EOR" (CEOR) technologies in the growing "Enhanced Oil Recovery" (EOR) group of offerings used for improving oil recovery in older, declining and "marginal" oil wells/oil reservoirs.
What is Carbon Capture and Sequestration?
Carbon Capture and Sequestration is one of the most promising ways for reducing the buildup of greenhouse gas emissions in the atmosphere.
Even under the most optimistic scenarios for energy efficiency gains - along with the greater use of renewable energy technologies, and low carbon fuels and even no-carbon fuels, Carbon Capture and Sequestration will likely be an essential technology that is going to be deployed if the world is to stabilize atmospheric concentrations of greenhouse gas emissions to acceptable levels - and more specifically, that carbon emissions, one of the most potent and climate changing of all greenhouse gas emissions, be kept below 350 ppm.
What is Chemical Flooding?
"Chemical Flooding," also referred to as Chemical EOR, is one of the types of "Enhanced Oil Recovery" (EOR) technologies used for improving oil recovery in older, declining and "marginal" oil wells and mature oil fields.
There are a variety of chemicals used in chemical flooding to "enhance" oil recovery - a few of these include alkaline chemicals, polymers and surfactants.
"Polymer Flooding," which has been in use for about 40 years, is experiencing greater acceptance and more applications in Enhanced Oil Recovery due to the decrease in price of polymers, particularly hydrolyzed polyacrylamide or "PAM."
For more information on Chemical Flooding, visit: www.ChemicalFlooding.com
Chemical Flooding diagram courtesy of DOE
What is CO2-EOR?
CO2 EOR is an "enhanced oil recovery" technology that injects CO2 (carbon dioxide) into an underground geologic zone (oil/hydrocarbon containing "reservoir") that contains hydrocarbons for the purpose of producing the oil. The CO2 is produced along with the oil and then recovered and re-injected to recover more oil.
When the maximum amount of oil is recovered from the reservoir, the CO2 is then "sequestered" in the underground geologic zone that formerly contained the oil and the well is shut-in, permanently sequestering the CO2.
What is CO2 Flooding?
CO2 flooding is an "enhanced oil recovery" (EOR) technology wherein CO2 is injected into a known oil containing reservoir for recovering a large percentage of the "original oil in place" that was not recovered via primary recovery methods. During CO2 flooding the carbon dioxide and the remaining oil in the reservoir "mix" above a specific pressure known as the "minimum miscibility pressure" or MMP. At pressures equal to or above the minimum miscibility pressure, the carbon dioxide acts similarly to a "solvent" flooding the reservoir and leaving only a very small amount of residue behind. At pressures below the minimum miscibility pressure, the carbon dioxide increases oil production by "swelling" the oil thereby reducing its viscosity.
What is CO2 Injection?
CO2 Injection is an "enhanced oil recovery" (EOR) technology that represents the greenest way for recovering America's "stranded oil."
The major oil companies, when producing oil in "primary recovery" typically produce and recover the "easy oil" representing as little as 10% of the oil reservoir's "original oil in place." After recovering the easy oil, it is necessary to go into "secondary recovery" which is also referred to as enhanced oil recovery. These secondary recovery methods are expensive and sometimes only producing marginal amounts of oil. Therefore, some oil companies simply choose to plug and abandon the well and move on to the next project after only recovering as little as 10% of the oil in the reservoir.
Recovering the remaining oil in reservoirs is the purpose behind deploying enhanced oil recovery technologies which enables the remaining oil to flow, or drain from the host rock in the underground reservoir, to a production well. Enhanced oil recovery technologies produce the otherwise stranded oil from the otherwise depleted reservoir.
There are a number of enhanced oil recovery technologies and methods that have been used such as steam injection however, technologies such as these are expensive, and requires combustion of additional fossil fuel, releasing even more greenhouse gas emissions. Steam injection is particularly beneficial when dealing with production of "heavy oil."
CO2 Injection, and "CO2 Flooding," have been heralded as the greenest way to recover stranded oil as carbon dioxide frees the stranded oil easily and affordably - and after the oil has been recovered, the co2 is "trapped" in the reservoir, in a solution called "carbon capture and sequestration." In CO2 injection, carbon dioxide, under pressure, is injected between oil wells to freeing the stranded oil. At one time, water was injected to free the stranded oil, but the water mixed with the oil and the recovered liquid quickly became mostly water, that had to be separated from the oil. CO2 is a superior agent in recovering stranded oil as the CO2 naturally reduces the surface tension that traps the liquid oil to in the oil reservoir. When the oil is recovered from the production well, CO2 is also produced, but is easily separated from the crude oil because the CO2 reverts back to its gaseous state when the pressure is removed.
What is "Microbial EOR?"
Microbial EOR, is one of the newer forms of "enhanced oil recovery" technologies that has quite a few new companies all claiming they have the most effective microbe or microbes for increasing oil production in the 3rd and final stage of oil recovery.
While Microbial EOR technology appears to be a promising technology, there are many others EOR Technologies that have a longer track record and may be a better choice and more effective strategy for increasing oil production.
We represent an engineering company that provides enhanced oil recovery engineering services on a strict "vendor-neutral." They are a recognized engineering company that will identify the optimum EOR technology for your specific application and reservoir. In addition, we represent several investors and an investment bank interested in enhanced oil recovery opportunities, companies and making acquisitions of oil production suitable for enhanced oil recovery.
What is Nitrogen Injection?
Nitrogen Injection is an "enhanced oil recovery" (EOR) technology that represents the greenest way for recovering America's "trapped oil."
Nitrogen injection, also referred to as "gas injection" which uses nitrogen as the gas to improve oil recovery.
Gas injection also uses other gases in EOR applications. Other gases include natural gas and carbon dioxide or CO2. When the gas is injected into the reservoir, via an injection well, the gas expands in the reservoir to push or drive additional oil to a production wellbore. Other gases that " dissolve" in the oil which lowers the viscosity of the oil and improves its flow rate. Gas injection, including nitrogen injection, accounts for nearly 50 percent of EOR production in the United States.
What is Polymer Flooding?
"Polymer Flooding" one of the leading types of "Enhanced Oil Recovery" (EOR) technologies used for improving oil recovery - particularly in older and declining oil wells/oil reservoirs. Polymer flooding is also referred to as "chemical flooding" as well as "Chemical EOR."
To further define "polymer flooding," one must also know what a polymer is.
what is "polymer"?
Poly = many
mer = part
So, polymer, roughly defined, means "many parts."
In polymer flooding, the polymers used reduces the "surface tension" between the oil and the oil-containing rock within the oil reservoir, "freeing" the trapped oil making it easier to flow to the production well(s).
Polyacrylamide powder or "PAM" is a non-toxic powder that is a long-chain molecule first used in cleaning wastewater at wastewater treatment plants. In polymer flooding, PAM makes the water "gel" greatly improving the production of oil. In polymer flooding, polymer, or polymers, are used to make the water injected into the (injection well) oil reservoirs more "viscous" or thick, much like a gel. This greatly improves oil production, and is particularly beneficial in heavy oil recovery.
Several of the leading benefits of polymer flooding include:
Improved oil recovery
Increased "sweep efficiency"
Significantly less water required when compared with typical water-flooding & steam injection
Superior EOR technology with "heavy oil" formations/reservoirs with low viscosity and where Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage (SAGD) is not suitable
What is Polymer Injection?
"Polymer Injection" one of the leading types of "Enhanced Oil Recovery" (EOR) technologies used for improving oil recovery - particularly in older and declining oil wells/oil reservoirs. Polymer flooding is also referred to as "chemical flooding" as well as "Chemical EOR."
What is Solar EOR?
Solar EOR, also referred to as "solar enhanced oil recovery" is a new energy technology which utilizes concentrating solar power plants (with "parabolic troughs") to capture the energy of the sun - instead of natural gas (which fires boilers) - for steam generation wherein the steam is injected into oil reservoirs to produce oil through the standard enhanced oil recovery technologies.
Unfortunately for the nascent Solar EOR industry and fairly-established concentrating solar power industry, natural gas prices have plummeted well below $3.00/mmbtu, making Solar EOR a technology that cannot be justified or considered by either oil and gas companies/producers or investors wanting a competitive return on their investment.
Additional problems with Solar EOR are the problems relating to the days when the sun isn't shining - rain, fog, drizzle - and there isn't enough (or any) steam that is generated. Even when the sun is shining, the energy produced from the sun from the Solar EOR system generates steam for only about 5 hours/day. As oil and natural gas companies engaged in enhanced oil recovery operate 24 x 7 x 365, few, if any, will find much benefit being able to generate steam for only 20% - 25% of each day. These companies engaged in enhanced oil recovery operations will therefore, still be required to have a natural gas fired power plant for steam generation purposes, for their operations. There is no learning curve for these oil and natural gas companies engaged in enhanced oil recovery. Oil and natural gas companies know and understand natural gas fired power plants - typically having their own natural gas to run the power plant.
What is Steam Injection?
Steam Injection is an "enhanced oil recovery" (EOR) technology that represents one of the most efficient methods for recovery of "trapped oil" particularly stranded oil that is considered to be "heavy oil." Steam Injection is the primary method of "thermal stimulation" and production of oil in most oil reservoirs. There are several different forms of the technology, with the two leading methods known as; Cyclic Steam Stimulation and Steam Flooding. Both variations of Steam Injection are used to produce oil in oil reservoirs that are relatively shallow and which contain crude oils which are known to be "heavy oil." Heavy oil is "viscous" at the ambient temperatures within the native underground oil reservoir and formation.
The major oil companies, when producing oil in "primary recovery" typically produce and recover the "easy oil" representing as little as 10% of the oil reservoir's "original oil in place." After recovering the easy oil, it is necessary to go into "secondary recovery" which is also referred to as enhanced oil recovery or tertiary recovery. These secondary recovery methods are expensive and sometimes only producing marginal amounts of oil. Therefore, some oil companies simply choose to plug and abandon the well and move on to the next project after only recovering as little as 10% of the oil in the reservoir leaving behind what is referred to as "trapped oil."
Trapped oil - in reservoirs where enhanced oil recovery technologies are deployed to enable the stranded oil to flow, or drain from the host rock in the underground reservoir, to a production well. Enhanced oil recovery technologies produce the otherwise stranded oil from the otherwise depleted reservoir.
What is Surfactant EOR?
Surfactant EOR - or surfactant enhanced oil recovery, is one of the promising types of "enhanced oil recovery" or "EOR," technologies for the recovery of "trapped oil" (or "stranded" oil).
What are "surfactants"?
Surfactants are a broad group of mostly non-toxic "soaps" or chemicals (in both powder and liquid form) that are commonly found in soap, detergents, dishwashing soap and even shampoo. The type of surfactants used in surfactant EOR are of the industrial-strength variety that reduce the viscosity of the oil in the reservoir that makes the oil easier to recover.
What is Surfactant Flooding?
Surfactant Flooding - also referred to as Surfactant EOR is one of the leading types of "enhanced oil recovery" or "EOR" technologies that are used to free "trapped oil" wherein surfactants - or soaps, are used as the chemical that is injected in the reservoir to increase oil production.
What is Tertiary Recovery?
Tertiary Recovery - also referred to as "enhanced oil recovery" or "EOR," represents one of the most efficient methods for recovery "trapped oil," particularly trapped oil (stranded oil) that is considered to be "heavy oil."
Tertiary recovery of oil is also the final stage of oil production before a well may be plugged and abandoned.
Tertiary recovery requires the use of "reservoir engineers" as well as geologists that are able to grasp the complex dynamics of oil recovery from many types of underground reservoirs, oil fields and oil zones. Tertiary recovery of oil often involves the application of various technologies, all of which can be very expensing, and include; gas injection, steam injection, chemical injection and more recently, "microbial" injection (Microbial EOR).
What is Thermal EOR?
Thermal EOR - or thermal enhanced oil recovery is one of the tried and true methods of "enhanced oil recovery" or "EOR," technologies for the recovery of "trapped oil" (or "stranded" oil). Two of the Thermal EOR technologies include "steam injection" and fire flooding.
What is EOR Technologies sm ?
EOR Technologies is company with a single focus - providing the optimum EOR technology for our clients on a "technology-neutral" basis - as determined by our oil well and reservoir test and analysis.
Over the past forty years, the enhanced oil recovery industry has produced a number of excellent and proven EOR technologies. However, the optimum EOR technology for any one particular client with declining oil production, is dependent on a number of variables that must be identified and understood before selecting the correct EOR technology, including;
Specific oil reservoir
Reservoir type & condition
Depth of pay zone
Mobility & mobility control
Overall condition of well/wellbore
Reservoir's brine salinity (NaCl) content
Reservoir sweep/sweep efficiency potential
Working condition of reservoir
among others. The " optimum" EOR technology for one reservoir and pay zone may not be the optimum EOR technology for another - even within the same oil field. That's why we are "EOR technology neutral." We apply the optimum EOR technology for each client's specific requirements for maximizing our client's oil recovery, at the least possible cost.
Enhanced oil recovery represents a significant opportunity for companies with declining oil production to significantly increase their oil production and revenues through our range of EOR technologies and services.
How much more oil can we produce from our "mature" oil field and wells?
Enhanced oil recovery or "EOR" represents a significant opportunity for companies with declining oil production to significantly increase their oil production and revenues through our range of EOR technologies and services.
As seen above, there are a number of variables that determine the potential increase in production for any particular application.
With that said, some of the EOR technologies can have a significant reversal in oil production. And by "significant," this could mean anywhere from a 100% increase in oil production to a 500% increase in oil production.
Would increasing your oil production from 2 bbls/day to 4 bbls/day for a 100% increase in oil production make a difference to your company/operations?
How about going from 50 bbls/day to 250 bbls/day for a 500% increase in oil production? That's the possibility with EOR technologies!
Moving forward with us and increasing your oil production.
EOR Technologies is an "independent" EOR company that is EOR "technology-neutral." We provide the correct EOR technology for our client companies that will maximize their oil production at the least cost.
EOR "technology-neutral" means that EOR Technologies is;
* NOT an engineering company selling EOR engineering or petroleum engineering services!
* NOT a chemical company selling chemicals!
* NOT an equipment company selling EOR equipment or other EOR products!
For us to assist, your oil production must be located in the USA or Canada and by an initial no-charge telephone consult, determine whether your oil wells/mature oil field may qualify and benefit from one of our EOR technologies.
After the no-charge telephone consult determines the need for us to test your oil wells and reservoir, we execute an agreement that authorizes us to send our personnel and equipment to perform the test and invoice for this service. The test determines existing conditions and the optimum EOR solution.
Once we have completed the test and analysis, we offer various options for moving forward including one option that offers companies a no out-of-pocket expense option for their qualified oil wells/oil fields.
We Free Trapped Oil sm with technology-neutral EOR Technologies, including; ASP flooding, Chemical Flooding / Chemical EOR, CO2 Flooding, CO2 Injection, CO2-EOR, Enhanced Oil Recovery (EOR), Gas Injection, Microbial EOR, Miscible EOR, Nitrogen Injection, Polymer Flooding, Polymer Injection, Solar EOR, Steam Injection, Surfactant EOR, Surfactant Flooding, Thermal EOR and other EOR technologies according to each well, reservoir or oil field's "optimum" solution. EOR technologies may be provided in part or in whole by affiliated companies or partner companies.
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