Downhole heating and hybrid cyclic steam methods: evaluating technologies from the laboratory to the field

Keywords: Enhanced oil recovery, thermal methods, cyclic steam stimulation, cyclic steam injection;, hybrid technologies, downhole heat technologies, numerical simulation, benefit-to-cost ratio, energy balance, renewable energy, environmental index


The development of heavy oil reservoirs under steam injection methods is facing multiple challenges due to the volatility of oil markets, energy efficiency, and new and stricter environmental regulations. This study aims to summarize the advances of a Research and Development (R&D) program established by Ecopetrol in 2018 to identify potential opportunities to improve the recovery performance of steam injection projects in heavy
oil reservoirs in the Middle Valley Magdalena Basin (VMM) of Colombia.
This paper summarizes an approach used to evaluate downhole heating and hybrid steam injection technologies assisted by basic benefit-cost ratios and energy and environmental indexes.
Specifically, the methodology is described for the identification of optimum development plan scenarios for heavy oil wells. This study also summarizes recent advances in laboratory studies for the evaluation of hybrid steam flooding technologies (steam plus flue gas and solvents) and provides updates on the hybrid cyclic
steam-foam pilot carried out in two VMM wells.
The proposed approach represents a fast screening method that has proven to be valuable in supporting management decision-making to allocate resources for laboratory and engineering studies to evaluate thermal enhanced oil recovery (tEOR) technologies in Colombia. The proposed methodology has also contributed to reducing the implementation cycle of tEOR technologies following the reservoir analog description of
reserve analysis. The latter was validated with the successful pilot results of the hybrid steam injection with foams implemented in July 2019.


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How to Cite
Perez, R., Garcia Duarte, H., Osma, L., Barbosa Goldstein, C., Garcia Rodríguez, L. E., Botett Cervantes, J. A., Rodriguez Prada, H. A., & Manrique, E. (2020). Downhole heating and hybrid cyclic steam methods: evaluating technologies from the laboratory to the field. CT&F - Ciencia, Tecnología Y Futuro, 10(2), 49-60.


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