Analysis of Nitrogen Minimum Miscibility Pressure Mmp and its Impact on Instability of Asphaltene Aggregates -- An Experimental Study
Minimum miscibility pressure (MMP) is a critical parameter when undergoing miscible gas injection operations for enhanced oil recovery (EOR). Miscibility has become a major term in designing the gas injection process. When the miscible gas contacts the reservoir oil, it causes changes in the basic oil properties, affecting reservoir oil composition and equilibrium conditions. Changes in conditions may also favor flocculation and deposition of organic solids, mainly asphaltene, which were previously in thermodynamic equilibrium. The main purpose of this study is to investigate how the most important parameters, such as oil temperature and oil viscosity, could affect the nitrogen (N2) MMP and the instability of asphaltene aggregation. Three sets of experiments were conducted: first, the determination of MMP was performed using a slim-tube packed with sand. The impact of crude oil viscosity using 32, 19, and 5.7 cp; and temperature using 32, 45, and 70 °C, were investigated. The results showed that the N2 MMP decreased when crude oil temperature increased. The temperature is inversely proportional to the N2 MMP due to the N2 remaining in a gaseous phase at the same conditions. In terms of viscosity, the MMP for N2 was found to decrease with the reduction in oil viscosity. Second, the effect of miscibility N2 injection pressure on asphaltene aggregation using 750 psi (below miscible pressure) and 1500 psi (at miscible pressure) was investigated using a specially designed filtration vessel. Various filter membrane pores sizes were placed inside the vessel to highlight the effect of asphaltene molecules on plugging the unconventional pore structure. The results demonstrated that increasing the pressure increased asphaltene weight percentage. The asphaltene weight percent was higher when using miscible injection pressure compared to immiscible injection pressure. Also, the asphaltene weight percentage increased when the pore size structure decreased. Finally, the visualization of asphaltene deposition over time was conducted, and the results showed that asphaltene particles started to precipitate after 2 hours. After 12 hours, the colloidal asphaltenes were fully precipitated.
M. Elturki and A. Imqam, "Analysis of Nitrogen Minimum Miscibility Pressure Mmp and its Impact on Instability of Asphaltene Aggregates -- An Experimental Study," Proceedings of the SPE Trinidad and Tobago Section Energy Resources Conference 2021, Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE), Jun 2021.
The definitive version is available at https://doi.org/10.2118/200900-MS
SPE Trinidad and Tobago Section Energy Resources Conference, TTCE 2021 (2021: Jun. 28-30, Virtual)
Geosciences and Geological and Petroleum Engineering
International Standard Book Number (ISBN)
Article - Conference proceedings
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30 Jun 2021