Doctoral Dissertations


"In this research, a study of the non-thermal method of alkaline-surfactant (AS) flooding to enhance heavy oil recovery from the Pennsylvanian Warner sandstone reservoir in Western Missouri was conducted. This work includ [sic] testing approximately 30 commercial surfactants and using a heavy oil sample with an API of 17. It was found that a number of surfactants could create stable emulsions. The viscosity of heavy oil could be reduced from 18,518 cp to 2.5 cp at 25⁰C through emulsification of certain surfactants. One of the major findings was that the emulsion created by the commercial surfactant, Igepalʼ CO-530 was stable at 25⁰C, but the oil and brine could be readily separated at 40⁰C. The addition of alkaline to Igepalʼ CO-530 produced a more stable emulsion of the heavy oil and formation brine. This emulsion separated automatically at 55⁰C. Core flooding tests were performed by the use of Igepalʼ CO-530 and alkaline NaOH at 0.6 wt% in the synthetic brine. These tests were conducted under both oil-wet and water-wet reservoir conditions, but the highest oil recovery always obtained under water-wet condition. The wettability alteration was studied through the measurement of interfacial tension and the contact angle of water on the sandstone surface treated with a model of the heavy oil sample was measured using Goniometer. Results indicated that wettability of the sandstone surface pre-treated with heavy oil could be effectively changed to water-wet by the surfactants. Additionally, spontaneous imbibition tests were conducted and it was found that the oil recovery was between 40% and 60% by nonionic surfactants, 10% and 20% by anionic surfactants, and 0% by formation water only. These results were used to conduct a simulation. The simulation results matched the experimental work, suggesting that further testing of AS flooding should be conducted"--Abstract, page iii.


Dunn-Norman, Shari

Committee Member(s)

Nygaard, Runar
Flori, Ralph E.
Neogi, P. (Partho), 1951-
Bai, Baojun


Geosciences and Geological and Petroleum Engineering

Degree Name

Ph. D. in Petroleum Engineering


Schlumberger Fund


Missouri University of Science and Technology

Publication Date

Summer 2011


xii, 131 pages

Note about bibliography

Includes bibliographical references (pages 117-129).

Geographic Coverage



© 2011 Rabia Mohamed Hunky, All rights reserved.

Document Type

Dissertation - Restricted Access

File Type




Subject Headings

Chemical equilibrium
Enhanced oil recovery -- Missouri
Heavy oil
Surface active agents

Thesis Number

T 9777

Print OCLC #


Electronic OCLC #


Link to Catalog Record

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