Successful story of Development and Optimization for Surfactant-Polymer Flooding in a geologically complex reservoir

Cuong T.Q.Dang, Zhangxing Chen, Ngoc T.B. Nguyen, Wisup Bae, Thuoc H. Phung


For mature reservoirs, surfactant-polymer (SP) flooding is an attractive alternative to conventional waterflooding. However, it is a complicated process and the performance of SP flooding in complex reservoirs requires an accurate model that represents the reservoir features, chemical properties, and displacement mechanisms. This paper presents a successful application of miscible-tertiary SP flooding in an extremely heterogeneous reservoir. First, a series of numerical simulations in both homogeneous and heterogeneous cases were investigated and analyzed by a CMGTM simulator. Then a mathematical model was developed based on the Langmuir isotherm theory in order to fully integrate adsorption phenomenon into a reservoir model for controlling and reducing this effect during the SP flooding process. Small of polymer/surfactant adsorption leads to a small amount of chemical required for injecting and decreases operational cost.

Based on the above achievements, SP flooding was successfully applied for White Tiger – the biggest offshore oil field with high heterogeneity and complex geological characteristics in the Viet Nam continental shelf. An optimal range of operated conditions that include polymer solution properties, injection pressure and injection rates are proposed with the objective of optimizing the SP process in the White Tiger field. The simulation results show that SP flooding is the best recovery schemes in comparison with waterflooding, pure polymer flooding and pure surfactant flooding. A significant increase in oil production has been achieved by the effect of surfactant and polymer which is a really successful evidence of SP flooding in complex reservoirs.