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Titan, United States

Augustinovic Z.,DONG Energy | Birketveit o.,Schlumberger | Clements K.,Schlumberger | Freeman M.,Schlumberger | And 8 more authors.
Oilfield Review | Year: 2012

Microbes have a long history in the oil and gas industry. New molecular analysis methods, coupled with increased knowledge of microbe identity and chemistry, have led to advances in combating microbiologically influenced corrosion and reservoir damage. Scientists are also using these advances to develop new methods for microbiologically enhanced oil recovery and bioremediation.

Zahner R.L.,Venoco | Tapper S.J.,Husky Energy | Govreau B.R.,Titan Oil Recovery Inc.
SPE Reservoir Evaluation and Engineering | Year: 2012

Using a breakthrough process, which does not require microbes to be injected, more than 100 microbial enhanced-oil-recovery (MEOR) treatments were conducted from 2007 to the end of 2010 in oil- producing and water-injection wells in the United States and Canada. On average, these treatments increased oil production by 122%, with an 89% success rate. This paper reviews the MEOR process, reviews the results of the first 100+ treatments, and shares what has been learned from this work. Observations and conclusions include the following: 1. Screening reservoirs is critical to success. Identifying reservoirs where appropriate microbes are present and oil is movable is the key. 2. MEOR can be applied to a wide range of oil gravities. MEOR has been applied successfully to reservoirs with oil gravity as high as 41°API and as low as 16°API. 3. When microbial growth is appropriately controlled, reservoir plugging or formation damage is no longer a risk. 4. Microbes reside in extreme conditions and can be manipulated to perform valuable in-situ "work." MEOR has been applied successfully at reservoir temperatures as high as 200°F and salinities as high as 140,000 ppm total dissolved solids (TDS). 5. MEOR can be applied successfully in dual-porosity reservoirs. 6. A side benefit of applying MEOR is that it can reduce reservoir souring. 7. An oil response is not always observed when treating producing wells. MEOR can be applied to many more reservoirs than thought originallys with little downside risk. This review of more than 100 MEOR well treatments expands the types of reservoirs in which MEOR can be applied successfully. Low-risk and economically attractive treatments can be accomplished when appropriate scientific analysis and laboratory screening are performed before treatments. Copyright © 2012 Society of Petroleum Engineers.

A method of increasing oil recovery from oil reservoirs includes the step of conducting a series of lab analysis that lead to a specific nutrient formulation followed by or in parallel with a genetic analysis of resident microorganisms in water produced from an oil reservoir to determine if the population of oil interactive microorganisms may be modified to produce a change in oil-water relative permeability of an oil reservoir. The series of analyses are conducted to determine the contents of a specific nutrient formulation package to optimize changes in the resident microorganisms to enhance oil recovery by changing oil-water relative permeability in the oil reservoir. Next the specific nutrient formulation is applied to stimulate some of the resident microorganisms to interact with oil contained in the reservoir rock formations. The stimulation step is followed by limiting the specific nutrient formulation to alter or modify the physiology and surface characteristics of the targeted microorganisms.

A method of improving oil recovery includes the step of selecting an oil containing rock formation having geologic structures and well completions with vertical permeability that allow a structurally high water injection point. Through a series of analyses a nutrient water mixture is determined and injected at the injection point to stimulate resident microorganisms through gravity dispersion of nutrient materials. A period of limitation is allowed to permit changes in the size or hydrophobic properties of the microorganisms. Through interaction with the stimulated resident microorganisms, oil, trapped in a pore space, is freed to accumulate with upward gravity separation for production.

A method of enhancing oil recovery includes the step of determining a specific nutrient package used to initiate a microbiological response under actual reservoir conditions in combination with low salinity water injection. Once determined, the specific nutrient package is applied to at least one targeted well to stimulate resident microorganisms such that size or hydrophobic properties are beneficially altered so that interaction with oil contained in a reservoir rock formation is improved.

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