Ghazanfer Raza Abbasi
ORCID : 0000-0001-8021-513X
School of Engineering
Nanofluids as an EOR technique are reported to enhance oil recoveries. Among all the nanomaterial silica with promising lab results, economic and environmental acceptability are an ideal material for future applications. Despite the potential to enhance recoveries, understanding the two-fold impact of parameters such as concentration, salinity, stability, injection rate, and irreproducibility of results has arisen ambiguities that have delayed field applications. This integrated study is conducted to ascertain two-fold impacts of concentration and salinity on recovery and stability and evaluates corresponding changes in the recovery mechanism with variance in the parameters. Initially, silica nanofluids’ recovery potential was evaluated by tertiary flooding at different concentrations (0.02, 0.05, 0.07, 0.1) wt. % at 20,000 ppm salinity. The optimum concentration of 0.05 wt. % with the highest potential in terms of recovery, wettability change, and IFT reduction was selected. Then nano-flooding was carried out at higher salinities at a nanomaterial concentration of 0.05 wt. %. For the mechanism’s evaluation, the contact angle, IFT and porosity reduction, along with differential profile changes were analyzed. The recovery potential was found at its highest for 0.05 wt. %, which reduced when concentrations were further increased as the recovery mechanisms changed and compromised stability. Whereas salinity also had a two-fold impact with salinity at 30,000 ppm resulting in lower recovery, higher salinity destabilized the solution but enhanced recoveries by enhancing macroscopic mechanisms of pore throat plugging.
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