Paper D16: Air Injection into Light Oil Reservoirs: Oxidation Kinetics and Simulation

Malcolm Greaves, A H Bentaher, R R Rathbone

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper


Air injection into deep, light oil reservoirs, which have previously been water flooded, is a very promising IOR technology. The process of air injection is considered a cheaper injectant gas alternative to using hydrocarbon gas, carbon dioxide, or nitrogen, because it is freely available. The process can also be made sustainable and clean, if the produced carbon dioxide is reinjected into adjacent reservoirs, and finally sequestrated. For IOR, air satisfies the important criterion of being available in unlimited volumes, subject to available compression capacity. All that is required, therefore, is a sufficiently high reservoir temperature, usually 90 °C, or greater, in order for the oxygen in the injected air to be consumed by oxidation reactions with the oil, thereby creating a safe process. One large reservoir in the North Sea is currently being considered for air injection. Small batch reactor (SBR) tests were conducted at pressures up to 300 bar, in the temperature range 100 to 150 °C, relevant to low temperature oxidation (LTO) in light oil reservoirs. The reaction kinetic parameters were determined from the dynamic pressure reduction, which occurred as oxygen was consumed by reaction with the reservoir oil. The effect of oil saturation, water saturation, reservoir rock and temperature were investigated. A suitable reaction model was validated for use in the STARS reservoir simulator by using isothermal 'combustion tube' data. Simulation predictions were then made for the 1-D 'combustion tube' geometry and also for a hypothetical 3-D reservoir section.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2005
Event13th European Symposium on Improved Oil Recovery - Budapest, Hungary
Duration: 25 Apr 200527 Apr 2005


Conference13th European Symposium on Improved Oil Recovery


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