Experimental Investigation Of Sp Flooding In Central Onshore Of The Niger Delta

Filed in Articles by on November 18, 2022

Experimental Investigation Of Sp Flooding In Central Onshore Of The Niger Delta


TITLE PAGE                                                                                                                          ii

CERTIFICATION                                                                                                                 iii

DEDICATION                                                                                                                       iv

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT                                                                                                     v

TABLE OF CONTENT                                                                                                         vi

LIST OF TABLES                                                                                                                 viii

LIST OF FIGURES                                                                                                               ix

ABBREVIATIONS                                                                                                                x

ABSTRACT                                                                                                                             xii


1.0       Overview of Study

1.1       Objectives of the study

1.2       Statement of the problem

1.3       Significance of Study

1.4       Scope/Limitation of study

1.5       Hypothesis

1.6       Research questions

1.7       Research methodology


2.0       Why surfactant polymer flooding?

2.1       Review of surfactants

2.1.1  Types of surfactants   Anionic surfactants   Non – ionic surfactants   Cationic surfactants    Zwitterionic (amphoteric) surfactants

2.1.2   Micro-emulsion and CMC

2.1.3   Phase behaviour    Phase behaviour observation

2.1.4   Surfactant Retention

2.1.5   Surfactant mechanisms    Interfacial tension    Capillary number

2.1.6    Surfactant flooding and types   Micellar/polymer flooding   Alkaline Surfactant polymer (ASP) flooding

2.1.7   Surfactant Evaluation

2.2      Polymer/polymer flooding

2.2.1   Polymer

2.2.2   Types of polymer   Synthetic polymers    Biopolymers

2.2.3   Characteristics of polymers used for IOR processes    Hydratibility    Rheology

2.2.4    Polymer flooding

2.3       Polymer augmented surfactant flooding

2.4       Successful applications and researches so far

2.4.1    Shengli Oilfield, SINOPEC

2.4.2    Dagang Oilfield

2.4.3    Other research work on SP flooding


3.0       Research methodology

3.1       Materials and equipment used

3.2       Cores

3.3       Preparation of reagents

3.3.1   Brine preparation

3.3.2   Chemical slug preparation

3.4       Crude oil properties

3.5       Experimental set-up

3.6       Determining porosity

3.7       Experimental procedure


4.0       Results and discussion.

4.1       Oil flooding (drainage)

4.2       Water-flooding.

4.3        Experiment 1 – Core A

4.4        Experiment 2 – Core B

4.5        Experiment 3 – Core T

4.6        Experiment 4 – Core R

4.7        Discussion


5.0        Conclusions and recommendation

5.1        Recommendations


With ever increase crude oil demand and the present low cost per barrel, it is highly uneconomical for new exploration, thus there is no need to maximise recovery from the existing reservoir.

Surfactant Polymer flooding is an improved oil recovery that can mobilise more oil to the surface from an oil reservoir. In this paper, we investigated the potential application of SP flooding in a shallow oil reservoir X, located in the Central-Onshore of the Niger Delta.

Four different rocks were used namely; ROBU synthetic cores (2 different porosity and permeability classes), a widely accepted model rock (Bentheimer sandstone) and a low permeability-high porosity reservoir rocks (obtained from the Central Onshore of the Niger Delta) were used.

Hengfloc 63020 polymer in combination with Shell Enordet O242 surfactant (supplied by Shell research centre) constituted the slug used in this work.

The reservoir condition was simulated using the reservoir oil and low salinity brine of 2300ppm. Initial water-flooding experiments were carried out on the crude oil sample at surface conditions, which was followed by surfactant-polymer flooding at the same conditions.

Furthermore, analysis of the effluent collected during the experiment was carried out to determine oil recovery.

The results show that firstly, SP flooding can mobilize a substantial amount of by-passed oil in the reservoir after the water-flooding.

Secondly, a remarkable increase in oil recovery when compared with the literature data shows its applicability in the reservoir of interest. Recovery of above 37% of the OIIP and displacement efficiency of over 50% was recorded.

Accordingly, the surfactant-polymer recovery technique is applicable in the Niger Delta, and similar depositional environments. Thus, the practice of abandoning depleted reservoirs in this region can be replaced by using surfactant-polymer flooding to recover residual oil entrapped in the reservoirs.


For most of the oilfields in the world, at least half of the reserved oil is left behind after the primary (natural flow) method is exhausted.

Numerous techniques have been established in the past decades aiming to enhance the energy of the viscous fingered/channelled reservoirs after extensive water injection to improve oil recovery. This process is called improved oil recovery (IOR).

Among all the IOR techniques, surfactant-polymer flooding is one of the most promising techniques because of its effectiveness in improving displacement efficiency.

The intent of the surfactant polymer flooding technique is to:

  • Improve sweep efficiency by reducing the mobility ratio between the injected fluid and in-place fluids.
  • Eliminate or reduce capillary and interfacial forces, and thus improve displacement efficiency.
  • Act on both phenomena simultaneously.

The first intent of surfactant polymer flooding is what a polymer achieves. A polymer is a chemical substance that is made up of monomers.

From the word ‘poly’ which means many, and the word ‘mono’ which means single or one, the definition of a polymer is easily understood. Polymers are used in almost every sphere of life: from the household item e.g. cellophane, to industrial polymers e.g. rubber.

In improved oil recovery operations, a polymer is used to improve the volumetric sweep efficiency of water to oil in the reservoir. A polymer does this by increasing the viscosity of the water injected into the reservoir, and by reducing the permeability of the rock to water.

It, therefore, means that any polymer to be used for chemical IOR operation has to be water-soluble. There are many types of polymers, but the two most commonly used in chemical IOR operations are: partially hydrolysed polyacrylamides and the xanthan biopolymers.


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