Gas/oil nonequilibrium in multicontact miscible displacements within homogeneous porous media

Y. M. Al-Wahaibi*, A. H. Muggeridge, C. A. Grattoni

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Compositional simulation is usually used to predict the performance of multi-contact miscible (MCM) recovery schemes. One key assumption in most such simulations is that of instantaneous compositional equilibrium is achieved between phases in each grid block. This is despite the fact that most grid blocks are tens of metres long and at least a metre thick. This paper investigates the non-equilibrium observed in series of multi-contact miscible displacements performed in the laboratory. For simplicity a two-phase, three-component (IPA/water/cyclohexene) liquid system that exhibits an upper critical point at ambient conditions was used. Both vaporising and condensing drives were performed in well-characterised homogenous glass-bead packs. The use of analogue fluids and bead-packs enabled visualisation of the displacements as well as the usual measurements of effluent composition against time and recovery. Non-equilibrium was observed in the effluent from both the condensing and vaporising experiments. This increased with flow-rate but appeared to be independent of the permeability and the length of the bead-pack. Further experiments investigating the influence of gravity on vertical displacements indicated that non-equilibrium may also be a function of the viscous to gravity ratio. Detailed simulation using a commercial compositional simulator was unable to predict this non-equilibrium unless the results were tuned to the experimental observed effluent profiles using alpha factors. This is despite the fact that all PVT data, relative permeabilities and other pack properties were taken directly from experiments. However good match was obtained from a layered model with the permeability distribution obtained from a unit mobility ratio miscible displacement in the same pack. These results are consistent with physical dispersion being the underlying cause of the non-equilibrium. Viscous fingering is discounted due to the low mobility ratio (∼2) of the displacements.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages22
Publication statusPublished - 2006
Event15th SPE-DOE Improved Oil Recovery Symposium: Old Reservoirs New Tricks A Global Perspective - Tulsa, OK, United States
Duration: Apr 22 2006Apr 26 2006


Other15th SPE-DOE Improved Oil Recovery Symposium: Old Reservoirs New Tricks A Global Perspective
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityTulsa, OK

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology


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