Journal: The Open Petroleum Engineering Journal

Author(s): Kaoping Song, Ning Sun, Yanfu Pi




Polymer flooding is the most commonly applied chemical enhanced-oil-recovery technique in offshore oilfields. However, there are challenges and risks in applying the technology of polymer flooding to offshore heavy oil development.


This paper compared the spread law and the displacement effect of different injection modes and validated the feasibility of enhancing oil recovery by variable concentrations polymer flooding.


Two types of laboratory experiments were designed by using micro etching glass models and heterogeneous artificial cores. Furthermore, in order to determine a better polymer flooding mode, the displacement results, displacement characteristic curves and oil saturation distribution of heterogeneous artificial cores were also compared, respectively.


The experimental results showed that the recovery of variable concentrations polymer flooding was higher than that of constant concentration polymer flooding, under conditions of same total amount of polymer and similar water flooding recovery. Its sweep efficiency and displacement efficiency were also significantly higher than those of constant concentration polymer flooding. Moreover, variable concentrations polymer flooding had lower peak pressure and was at lower risk for reaching the formation fracture pressure.


As a consequence, variable concentrations polymer flooding has certain feasibility for heterogeneous reservoir in offshore oilfields, and can improve interlayer heterogeneity to further tapping remaining oil in medium and low permeability layer. Conclusions of this paper can provide reference for the field application of polymer flooding in offshore oilfields.

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