On September 30, 2014, the Petroleum Technology Transfer Council and the National Energy Technology Laboratory contractually parted ways. This milestone represents the end of a 20-year relationship with the Department of Energy.However, PTTC will continue to bring high-quality, low-cost workshops and symposia to your local area. We are exploring new funding resources and one of them is through Sponsorships. Please follow this link and read how you can become a Sustaining Sponsor of PTTC.
Geomechanical Model for the Marcellus ShalePennsylvania State University just completed (Jan 15, 2015) a multi-year project funded by the Research Partnership to Secure Energy for America (RPSEA). The project titled, A Geomechanical Model for Gas Shales Based on the Integration of Stress Measurements and Petrophysical Data from the Greater Marcellus Gas System, is designed to understand how rock stress affects the production from Marcellus wells.
The geomechanical model was developed using stress profiles and a broad suite of log‐and core‐based petrophysical data from the vicinity of three Marcellus gas well pads at South Canisteo in Lyoming Co., Pennsylvania. Cores and seismic profiles were analyzed by Dr. Terry Engelder (Penn State) following collection by Global Geophysical. The seismic profile covered a 4000 ft wide, by 83 ft long by 4000 ft high section drilled from two horizontal wells from the Cornwall-A pad.
Using Tomographic Fracture Image analysis (TFI) the research demonstrated that that there is a mechanical stratigraphy in the Appalachian Basin, which reflects the interaction of fractures and in situ stress. Dr. Engelder found that the most highly stressed layers, the Tully and Onondaga Limestone, emit the least seismic energy.
The Fall 2014 E&P Focus newsletter put out by the National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) highlighted three field projects recently completed under the RPSEA Small Producers Program. The entire issue addressed Tertiary recovery with a focus on using CO2 to increase recovery in mature oil fields; www.netl.doe.gov/File%20Library/Research/Oil-Gas/epnews-2014-fall.pdf.East Texas Oilfield, Tertiary Recovery
The East Texas Oilfield is one of the oldest, most productive oilfields in the country. Discovered in 1930, it has produced over 5.4 billion barrels of oil with a primary recovery rate of 77%. This is the highest recovery rate of any giant oilfield in the world, but more oil remains to be recovered. The University of Texas at Austin has conducted research under a RPSEA grant from 2009 to 2014 to demonstrate the optimal technologies for Tertiary Recovery using CO2. Core flood experiments indicate an addition 70% of the remaining-oil-in-place can be recovered using miscible CO2 technology. The final report for this project, “Development Strategies for Maximizing East Texas Oil Field Production,” project number 08123-16, is available online at www.netl.doe.gov/research/oil-and-gas.
Near Miscible CO2 of the Arbuckle
Arbuckle reservoirs have produced an estimated 2.2 billion barrels of oil, representing 35% of the 6.1 billion barrels of oil of total Kansas oil production. Remaining-oil-in-place in the Arbuckle was the target of a research study by the Kansas Geological Study. Currently over 100 small producers are operating in the Arbuckle mainly using waterflood technologies. Ogallah field was used to demonstrate the potential for miscible CO2. Many of the 85 wells in Ogallah field, operated by Carmen Schmitt, have been shut-in as uneconomic. Experimental flow studies and modeling is being used to develop injection patterns and simulate CO2 recovery. A project website detailing the results is available at www.torp.ku.edu/research/near-miscible-CO2.
Residual Oil Zones in the Permian Basin
The University of Texas, Permian Basin has participated in two RPSEA projects to define and understand the Residual Oil Zones (ROZ) in the Permian Basin and to demonstrate the significant new oil reserves recoverable from ROZ’s. The oil in the ROZs is residual, i.e., not recoverable by primary production methods or water flooding, but the oil is recoverable using CO2 EOR. The estimated oil-in-place in the ROZ’s in the Permian Basin exceeds 100 million barrels of oil, and is equal to the original-oil-in-place in the main pay zones. Currently ROZ production is from the San Andres Formation and represents zones that were waterflooded by “mother nature” over millions of years. Of the 15% to 35% oil trapped in ROZs some 10% to 20% can be recovered by CO2 flooding. Results of the study have confirmed the presence of thick and extensive ROZs below the oil/water contact; both below existing main pay zones, and in “greenfield” areas where no main pay zones are present. More information on the DOE research projects focused on ROZs can be found at www.netl.doe.gov.