Geomechanics of thermal viscous oil production in sandstones

Ali Shafiei, Maurice B. Dusseault

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

27 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Over 7. Tb of viscous oil (heavy oil, extra heavy oil, and bitumen) are trapped in sandstones or unconsolidated sand formations around the world, mainly in Canada, Venezuela, and Russia. To date, only cold flow methods and steam injection processes have achieved commercial success in accessing this immense resource. This article highlights the definitions, geology and origins, and geographical distribution of the viscous oil resources in the world, and then describes the approaches and physical mechanisms of the major commercialized viscous oil production methods being practiced around the world. Approaches to calculating thermally-induced stresses are presented, as well as discussions of thermo-mechanical issues associated with commercial thermal processes. Then, thermal, physical, and geomechanical properties of sandstone under high temperature and pressure are investigated, based on field and laboratory data. An important factor is the change in rock properties that takes place because of the large thermally-induced stresses. Finally, a practical example of thermal geomechanics effects during thermal oil production operations (example of Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage) is demonstrated, emphasizing that thermal oil production methods change reservoir rock behavior. Under elevated temperature and pressure, large changes in porosity, permeability, and compressibility occur; hence, the reservoir response evolves in time, a factor generally ignored in simulation. Whereas these geomechanical changes are largely beneficial as they tend to accelerate recovery rates, some difficult operational issues may arise, including casing shear, breach of reservoir seal, and excessive heat loss.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)121-139
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Petroleum Science and Engineering
Volume103
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Mar 1 2013
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Geomechanics
geomechanics
Sandstone
oil production
sandstone
heavy oil
steam injection
oil
rock property
bitumen
reservoir rock
resource
compressibility
temperature effect
geographical distribution
Steam
Crude oil
Rocks
Geographical distribution
porosity

Keywords

  • Bitumen
  • Heavy oil
  • Production methods
  • Reservoir rock behavior
  • Thermal and geomechancial properties
  • Thermal geomechanics
  • Viscous oil

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Fuel Technology
  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology

Cite this

Geomechanics of thermal viscous oil production in sandstones. / Shafiei, Ali; Dusseault, Maurice B.

In: Journal of Petroleum Science and Engineering, Vol. 103, 01.03.2013, p. 121-139.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

@article{a45e5fbed6cc4ed8b469cd3749164081,
title = "Geomechanics of thermal viscous oil production in sandstones",
abstract = "Over 7. Tb of viscous oil (heavy oil, extra heavy oil, and bitumen) are trapped in sandstones or unconsolidated sand formations around the world, mainly in Canada, Venezuela, and Russia. To date, only cold flow methods and steam injection processes have achieved commercial success in accessing this immense resource. This article highlights the definitions, geology and origins, and geographical distribution of the viscous oil resources in the world, and then describes the approaches and physical mechanisms of the major commercialized viscous oil production methods being practiced around the world. Approaches to calculating thermally-induced stresses are presented, as well as discussions of thermo-mechanical issues associated with commercial thermal processes. Then, thermal, physical, and geomechanical properties of sandstone under high temperature and pressure are investigated, based on field and laboratory data. An important factor is the change in rock properties that takes place because of the large thermally-induced stresses. Finally, a practical example of thermal geomechanics effects during thermal oil production operations (example of Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage) is demonstrated, emphasizing that thermal oil production methods change reservoir rock behavior. Under elevated temperature and pressure, large changes in porosity, permeability, and compressibility occur; hence, the reservoir response evolves in time, a factor generally ignored in simulation. Whereas these geomechanical changes are largely beneficial as they tend to accelerate recovery rates, some difficult operational issues may arise, including casing shear, breach of reservoir seal, and excessive heat loss.",
keywords = "Bitumen, Heavy oil, Production methods, Reservoir rock behavior, Thermal and geomechancial properties, Thermal geomechanics, Viscous oil",
author = "Ali Shafiei and Dusseault, {Maurice B.}",
year = "2013",
month = "3",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1016/j.petrol.2013.02.001",
language = "English",
volume = "103",
pages = "121--139",
journal = "Journal of Petroleum Science and Engineering",
issn = "0920-4105",
publisher = "Elsevier",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Geomechanics of thermal viscous oil production in sandstones

AU - Shafiei, Ali

AU - Dusseault, Maurice B.

PY - 2013/3/1

Y1 - 2013/3/1

N2 - Over 7. Tb of viscous oil (heavy oil, extra heavy oil, and bitumen) are trapped in sandstones or unconsolidated sand formations around the world, mainly in Canada, Venezuela, and Russia. To date, only cold flow methods and steam injection processes have achieved commercial success in accessing this immense resource. This article highlights the definitions, geology and origins, and geographical distribution of the viscous oil resources in the world, and then describes the approaches and physical mechanisms of the major commercialized viscous oil production methods being practiced around the world. Approaches to calculating thermally-induced stresses are presented, as well as discussions of thermo-mechanical issues associated with commercial thermal processes. Then, thermal, physical, and geomechanical properties of sandstone under high temperature and pressure are investigated, based on field and laboratory data. An important factor is the change in rock properties that takes place because of the large thermally-induced stresses. Finally, a practical example of thermal geomechanics effects during thermal oil production operations (example of Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage) is demonstrated, emphasizing that thermal oil production methods change reservoir rock behavior. Under elevated temperature and pressure, large changes in porosity, permeability, and compressibility occur; hence, the reservoir response evolves in time, a factor generally ignored in simulation. Whereas these geomechanical changes are largely beneficial as they tend to accelerate recovery rates, some difficult operational issues may arise, including casing shear, breach of reservoir seal, and excessive heat loss.

AB - Over 7. Tb of viscous oil (heavy oil, extra heavy oil, and bitumen) are trapped in sandstones or unconsolidated sand formations around the world, mainly in Canada, Venezuela, and Russia. To date, only cold flow methods and steam injection processes have achieved commercial success in accessing this immense resource. This article highlights the definitions, geology and origins, and geographical distribution of the viscous oil resources in the world, and then describes the approaches and physical mechanisms of the major commercialized viscous oil production methods being practiced around the world. Approaches to calculating thermally-induced stresses are presented, as well as discussions of thermo-mechanical issues associated with commercial thermal processes. Then, thermal, physical, and geomechanical properties of sandstone under high temperature and pressure are investigated, based on field and laboratory data. An important factor is the change in rock properties that takes place because of the large thermally-induced stresses. Finally, a practical example of thermal geomechanics effects during thermal oil production operations (example of Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage) is demonstrated, emphasizing that thermal oil production methods change reservoir rock behavior. Under elevated temperature and pressure, large changes in porosity, permeability, and compressibility occur; hence, the reservoir response evolves in time, a factor generally ignored in simulation. Whereas these geomechanical changes are largely beneficial as they tend to accelerate recovery rates, some difficult operational issues may arise, including casing shear, breach of reservoir seal, and excessive heat loss.

KW - Bitumen

KW - Heavy oil

KW - Production methods

KW - Reservoir rock behavior

KW - Thermal and geomechancial properties

KW - Thermal geomechanics

KW - Viscous oil

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=84877679078&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=84877679078&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1016/j.petrol.2013.02.001

DO - 10.1016/j.petrol.2013.02.001

M3 - Review article

AN - SCOPUS:84877679078

VL - 103

SP - 121

EP - 139

JO - Journal of Petroleum Science and Engineering

JF - Journal of Petroleum Science and Engineering

SN - 0920-4105

ER -