Analysis of Steam/Solvent-Coinjection Processes by Use of Dynamic Gridding

Fig. 1—Temperature and pressure horizontal profiles for a fine steam/solvent-coinjection model with different levels of activity in some control properties of dynamic gridding. OMF=oil molar fraction. GMF=gas molar fraction.

Hybrid steam/solvent processes have gained importance as a thermal-recovery process for heavy oils in recent years. Among the identified physical mechanisms that play a role during these processes are heat-transfer phenomena, gravity drainage and viscous flow, solvent mass transfer, and mass-diffusion/-dispersion phenomena. In this paper, a study of sensitivity to grid size is described. Ideally, this work will provide some insight into methodological aspects to be considered when hybrid steam/solvent processes are modeled.


Recent studies concerning the size of the liquid-solvent-rich zone where ­molecular diffusion and dispersion occur have implied that a detailed representation of the solvent/steam-­chamber edge is necessary in the numerical model. To represent this front appropriately, the authors propose application of fine-grid models to represent the steam/solvent condensation zone and, in parallel, activation of the adaptive-mesh refinement (AMR) option for amalgamating the internal and external portions of the steam chamber zone. It is expected that, with this simulation strategy, a detailed representation of the front will be caught by a fine model, while a coarse model will be sufficient to represent the heat-transfer phenomenon that dominates in the noncritical zone. For a discussion of the amalgamation process, please see the complete paper.

This article, written by JPT Technology Editor Chris Carpenter, contains highlights of paper SPE 169075, “A Methodological Analysis of the Mechanisms Associated With Steam/Solvent-Coinjection Processes by Use of Dynamic Gridding,” by A. Perez-Perez, M. Mujica, and I. Bogdanov, CHLOE, and J. Hy-Billiot, Total, prepared for the 2014 SPE Improved Oil Recovery Symposium, Tulsa, 12–16 April. The paper has not been peer reviewed.
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Analysis of Steam/Solvent-Coinjection Processes by Use of Dynamic Gridding

01 March 2015

Volume: 67 | Issue: 3


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