Several enhanced oil recovery (EOR) methods have been designed and developed in the past decades to maintain economic production from mature reservoirs with declining production rates. This chapter discuss mitigation of poor sweep efficiency in layered or naturally fractured reservoirs. EOR methods designed for such reservoirs all aim to reduce flow through highly conductive pathways and delay early breakthrough in production wells. Two approaches within this EOR class, injection of foam and polymer, specifically aim to improve the mobility ratio between the injected EOR fluid and the reservoir crude oil. Reduction in fracture conductivity may be achieved by adding a crosslinking agent to a polymer solution to create polymer gel. This may also be combined with water or chemical chasefloods (e.g. foam) for integrated enhanced oil recovery (iEOR). Polymer gel and foam mobility control for use in fractured reservoirs are discussed in this chapter, and new knowledge from experimental work is presented. The experiments emphasized visualization and in situ imaging techniques: CT, MRI and PET. New insight to dynamic behaviour and local variations in fluid saturations during injections was achieved through the use of complementary visualization techniques.
Part of the book: Chemical Enhanced Oil Recovery (cEOR)