The permeability of tight gas reservoirs is usually lower than 1 md. When the external fluids from drilling and completion processes invade such reservoirs, formation damage occurs and causes serious damage to oil and gas production. Fluorocarbon surfactants are most often recommended for removing such damage because they have extremely low surface tension, which means that they can change the reservoir wettability from water wet to gas or oil wet. However, they are not normally applied in the field because they are not cost-effective. Besides, some environmental concerns also restrict their application. In this work, we studied the effects of an oligomeric organosilicon surfactant (OSSF) on wettability modification, surface tension reduction, invasion of different fluids, and fluid flow back. It was found that the amount of spontaneous imbibition and remaining water could be reduced by the surfactant as a result of surface tension reduction and wettability alteration. Compared to the distilled water, the concentration of 0.20 wt% OSSF could decrease water saturation of cores by about 4%. At a flow-back pressure of 0.06 and 0.03 MPa after 20 PV displacement, permeability recovery could increase from 8 to 7–93% and 86%, respectively. We also found that the mechanism of OSSF includes the physical obstruction effect, surface tension reduction of external fluids, and wettability alteration of the reservoir generated. Meanwhile, quantum chemical calculations indicated that adsorbent layer of polydimethylsiloxane could decrease the affinity and adhesion of CH4 and H2O on the pore surface.
Part of the book: 21st Century Surface Science