Evaluation of a Nanocomposite Hydrogel for Water Shut-Off in Enhanced Oil Recovery Applications: Design, Synthesis, and Characterization


This work involves the synthesis of a nanocomposite hydrogel from just polymer and clay without the use of conventional organic crosslinkers. Conventional hydrogel design usually involves a multicomponent reaction that incorporates monomer (or polymer), initiator, and an organic crosslinker. However, because of the many limitations, setbacks, and inconsistencies involved with organic crosslinkers, authors herein present a nanocomposite hydrogel that incorporates polymer and clay only. It was found that these hydrogels show surprising mechanical toughness, tensile moduli, and tensile strengths. Study of gel behavior reveal physical interaction between polymer and clay, due in part to adsorption of polymer chains onto clay surface and ionic interactions between anionic carboxylate groups of polymer chains and positive clay surface. X-ray diffraction patterns and Scanning Electron Microscopy revealed the formation of intercalated and exfoliated clay morphology. Increase in clay concentration and gel strength had a direct proportionality. The effect of clay concentration on hydrogel decomposition temperature was also reported by thermogravimetric analysis.


Geosciences and Geological and Petroleum Engineering

Keywords and Phrases

Gels; Hydrogels; Nanocomposites; Nanolayers; Nanoparticles; Nanowires And Nanocrystals; Anionic Carboxylate Groups; Clay Concentration; Clay Surfaces; Cross-Linkers; Decomposition Temperature; Enhanced Oil Recovery; Exfoliated Clay; Gel Behavior; Gel Strengths; Ionic Interaction; Mechanical Toughness; Multi-Component Reactions; Nano Layers; Nanocomposite Hydrogels; Physical Interactions; Polymer Chains

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Article - Journal

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© 2013 Wiley & Sons, All rights reserved.

Publication Date

01 Apr 2013