Polymer flooding to improve volumetric sweep efficiency in waterflooding processes

  • Rubén Hernán Castro Garcia Ecopetrol S.A.
  • Gustavo Adolfo Maya Toro Ecopetrol S.A.
  • Robinson Jimenez Diaz Ecopetrol S.A.
  • Henderson Ivan Quintero Perez Universidad Industrial de Santander.
  • Venus Minerva Díaz Guardia Universidad Industrial de Santander.
  • Kelly Margarita Colmenares Vargas Universidad Industrial de Santander.
  • Jorge Mario Palma Bustamante Ecopetrol S.A.
  • Claudia Lorena Delgadillo Aya Ecopetrol S.A.
  • Romel Antonio Pérez Romero Ecopetrol S.A.
Keywords: Polymer flooding, Enhanced oil recovery (EOR), Chemical injection, waterflooding, hydrolyzed polyacrylamide (HPAM), Experimental feasibility, Coreflooding test, Numerical simulation, Polymer flooding facilities, Yariguí- Cantagallo Field


Polymer flooding is a commercial Enhanced Oil Recovery (EOR) process that belongs to the chemical EOR methods. Its principal objective is to improve reservoir sweep efficiency in mature and recent waterfloods.

This paper describes a methodology, developed at the Instituto Colombiano del Petróleo, for the theoretical evaluation, project design (screening, geological and engineering analysis, experimental evaluation, numerical simulation and financial analysis), pilot implementation and surveillance of the injection process.

The first polymer flooding pilot implemented in Colombia by Ecopetrol is described here as an example of the methodology developed. Results of this project show an increase in oil production rates and, a decrease in water cuts increasing the oil recovery factor of patterns YR-504 and YR-510 of Yariguí- Cantagallo Field.

Over two million barrels of polymer solution have been injected in the pilot during the first two continuous years of operation. This enables the assimilation of lessons learned and best practices for continual improvement in the operation of such processes. Based on the pilot success, the feasibility of expanding this EOR method in this and other Colombian fields is being evaluated.


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How to Cite
Castro Garcia, R. H., Maya Toro, G. A., Jimenez Diaz, R., Quintero Perez, H. I., Díaz Guardia, V. M., Colmenares Vargas, K. M., Palma Bustamante, J. M., Delgadillo Aya, C. L., & Pérez Romero, R. A. (2016). Polymer flooding to improve volumetric sweep efficiency in waterflooding processes. CT&F - Ciencia, Tecnología Y Futuro, 6(3), 71-90. https://doi.org/10.29047/01225383.10


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