Ramey Thermal Recovery Studies and Chemical Analysis Laboratory
Thermal Recovery Studies
Combustion Assisted Gravity Drainage (CAGD) is a new EOR process that uses dual horizontal wells for injection of air and production of heavy oil. An important feature of CAGD is the properly oriented dual horizontal wells, similar to SAGD (steam assisted gravity drainage), that assist in the development of a combustion chamber and the stabilized growth of the combustion front in the reservoir. More than 15 successful experiments have been conducted using the 3D laboratory model. Pilot testing of the CAGD process is expected in the near future.
Hybrid-SAGD research focuses on the experimental study of the addition of potential solvents to steam in the SAGD process, like N-hexane. Experiments are conducted using a scaled two-dimension cylindrical model. Experimental results confirmed the effectiveness of hydrocarbon additives to enhance SAGD process. Co-injection of solvent led to an acceleration of oil production rate, higher oil recovery and lower energy-to-oil ratio.
Shown is the 1D combustion cell donated by Texaco. Graduate student Hamid Rahnema is packing the combustion model using a mixture of crushed sand and peace river bitumen. This model is used to study the effect of different catalyst on crude oil upgrading and performance of combustion process.
Viscometers and Densitometers are used to analyze the oil property before and after thermal processes. These instruments can measure the oil properties for different temperatures, up to 150˚C.
Shown is a Laboratory Steam Generator, donated by Texaco. This heavy duty steam generator supplies high pressure, high temperature steam to laboratory models.
Interface Chemistry Study
Contact angle measuring systems provide a wide range of high-performance solutions for studying the surfaces of rock and hydrocarbons.
Undergraduate student Jair Martinez is testing emulsion using a digital microscope camera.
CO2 Injection in Fracture Reservoir
Shown is an overview of CO2 core flooding setup. Miscible CO2 flood study has been performed using fractured and fractured carbonate core using 31˚API west Texas oil to evaluate oil recovery under three main injection modes: SWAG, WAG and CGI. Experimental results suggest that continues gas injection in fracture cases is not recommended and injection water (wetting phase) along with CO2 is essential.