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Title: Thermally-enhanced oil recovery method and apparatus

Abstract

A thermally-enhanced oil recovery method and apparatus for exploiting deep well reservoirs utilizes electric downhole steam generators to provide supplemental heat to generate high quality steam from hot pressurized water which is heated at the surface. A downhole electric heater placed within a well bore for local heating of the pressurized liquid water into steam is powered by electricity from the above-ground gas turbine-driven electric generators fueled by any clean fuel such as natural gas, distillate or some crude oils, or may come from the field being stimulated. Heat recovered from the turbine exhaust is used to provide the hot pressurized water. Electrical power may be cogenerated and sold to an electric utility to provide immediate cash flow and improved economics. During the cogeneration period (no electrical power to some or all of the downhole units), the oil field can continue to be stimulated by injecting hot pressurized water, which will flash into lower quality steam at reservoir conditions. The heater includes electrical heating elements supplied with three-phase alternating current or direct current. The injection fluid flows through the heater elements to generate high quality steam to exit at the bottom of the heater assembly into the reservoir. The injectionmore » tube is closed at the bottom and has radial orifices for expanding the injection fluid to reservoir pressure.« less

Inventors:
 [1];  [2];  [2]
  1. (Scotia, NY)
  2. (Houston, TX)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
CARBOTEK INC
OSTI Identifier:
866366
Patent Number(s):
US 4694907
Assignee:
Carbotek, Inc. (Houston, TX) OSTI
DOE Contract Number:
AC02-86ER80378
Resource Type:
Patent
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
thermally-enhanced; oil; recovery; method; apparatus; exploiting; deep; reservoirs; utilizes; electric; downhole; steam; generators; provide; supplemental; heat; generate; quality; hot; pressurized; water; heated; surface; heater; placed; bore; local; heating; liquid; powered; electricity; above-ground; gas; turbine-driven; fueled; clean; fuel; natural; distillate; crude; oils; field; stimulated; recovered; turbine; exhaust; electrical; power; cogenerated; sold; utility; immediate; cash; flow; improved; economics; cogeneration; period; units; injecting; flash; reservoir; conditions; elements; supplied; three-phase; alternating; current; direct; injection; fluid; flows; exit; bottom; assembly; tube; closed; radial; orifices; expanding; pressure; recovery method; steam generators; oil field; electrical heating; heater assembly; electric generator; heating elements; liquid water; pressurized liquid; pressurized water; oil recovery; heating element; natural gas; direct current; steam generator; electrical power; gas turbine; fluid flow; alternating current; enhanced oil; fluid flows; lean fuel; crude oil; downhole steam; phase alternating; turbine exhaust; electrical heat; electric heater; electric heat; hot press; crude oils; local heating; reservoir conditions; provide supplemental; clean fuel; heater element; utilizes electric; supplemental heat; thermally-enhanced oil; generation period; /166/

Citation Formats

Stahl, Charles R., Gibson, Michael A., and Knudsen, Christian W. Thermally-enhanced oil recovery method and apparatus. United States: N. p., 1987. Web.
Stahl, Charles R., Gibson, Michael A., & Knudsen, Christian W. Thermally-enhanced oil recovery method and apparatus. United States.
Stahl, Charles R., Gibson, Michael A., and Knudsen, Christian W. Thu . "Thermally-enhanced oil recovery method and apparatus". United States. doi:. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/866366.
@article{osti_866366,
title = {Thermally-enhanced oil recovery method and apparatus},
author = {Stahl, Charles R. and Gibson, Michael A. and Knudsen, Christian W.},
abstractNote = {A thermally-enhanced oil recovery method and apparatus for exploiting deep well reservoirs utilizes electric downhole steam generators to provide supplemental heat to generate high quality steam from hot pressurized water which is heated at the surface. A downhole electric heater placed within a well bore for local heating of the pressurized liquid water into steam is powered by electricity from the above-ground gas turbine-driven electric generators fueled by any clean fuel such as natural gas, distillate or some crude oils, or may come from the field being stimulated. Heat recovered from the turbine exhaust is used to provide the hot pressurized water. Electrical power may be cogenerated and sold to an electric utility to provide immediate cash flow and improved economics. During the cogeneration period (no electrical power to some or all of the downhole units), the oil field can continue to be stimulated by injecting hot pressurized water, which will flash into lower quality steam at reservoir conditions. The heater includes electrical heating elements supplied with three-phase alternating current or direct current. The injection fluid flows through the heater elements to generate high quality steam to exit at the bottom of the heater assembly into the reservoir. The injection tube is closed at the bottom and has radial orifices for expanding the injection fluid to reservoir pressure.},
doi = {},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {Thu Jan 01 00:00:00 EST 1987},
month = {Thu Jan 01 00:00:00 EST 1987}
}

Patent:

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  • This patent describes a method of stimulating the flow of oil from a reservoir formation traversed by a bore hole. It consists of: providing an above-ground hydrocarbon powered turbine-driven electric generator to produce electrical power, supplying water in heat exchange relation to the exhaust from the turbine to produce pressurized hot water simultaneously with the power generation, positioning electric heating means in the bore hole between the surface and the point of discharge to the formation and energizing the same by power from the generator, positioning an injection tube in the bore hole adjacent to the heating means; the electricalmore » heating means comprising electric resistance heaters, completely insulated electrically from injected water and formation fluids positioned circumferentially about the hot water injection tube, the injection tube comprising a small-diameter insulated tube enclosed at the bottom and having orifices in the side wall adjacent to the electric heating means, injecting the pressurized hot water from the surface down the bore hole through the injection tube to expand the water to reservoir pressure, directing the high pressure steam from the electric resistance heaters into the oil reservoir to heat the same and stimulate the flow of hydrocarbons therefrom. An injection-heater for injecting high-pressure steam into a well formation consists of: an elongated axially extending tubular member adapted to be secured on the lower end of a conduit supported in a well bore; the tubular member being enclosed at its bottom end and having a series of apertures in its side wall, heating means comprising elongated electric heating elements circumferentially disposed about the tubular member bottom end adjacent to the apertures.« less
  • This patent describes a mandrel connectable in a conduit and having a longitudinal flow passage therethrough. It includes an upper tubular section having means therein for separating and collecting wetter steam and hot water from steam injected into the flow passage; and a lower body section having a receptacle therein offset from the flow passage, the receptacle communicating the flow passage with the mandrel exterior and ports in the lower body communicating the receptacle with the flow passage. This patent also describes a method of selectively providing steam or wet steam and hot water to one or more formation inmore » an enhanced oil recovery injection well simultaneously. It includes drilling a hole through earth formations containing viscous petroleum deposits; running casing into the hole and perforating the casing at selected intervals adjacent each the formation; running one or more tubing strings into the casing having a selected mandrel or selected spaced apart mandrels and a packer therein above each mandrel.« less
  • Apparatus for heating hydrocarbons, and the like, in an underground reservoir for the purpose of lowering the viscosity of the substance in the reservoir and facilitating the flow thereof has a flow channel arrangement disposable in a reservoir of the material to be treated for forming a flow path for a working fluid that is heated by a heating system associated with the flow channel arrangement. The heated working fluid is then discharged from the flow path and into the reservoir of material to be heated for the purpose of lowering the viscosity and improving the flowability of the materialmore » in the reservoir. The heating system includes an electrical resistance heating unit comprising an electrical circuit including at least one pair of opposed electrodes electrically connected in series and arranged along and partially forming the flow path for the working fluid, with the portion of the electrical circuit between the electrodes being completed through the working fluid. The series connection of the electrodes provide for efficient downhole use of electrical energy even at depths below 2,000 feet , by minimizing line losses to the electrodes and by creating, with accurate control, a very high resistance at the bottom of the well in which the device is disposed.« less
  • The present invention provides compact adsorption systems that are capable of rapid temperature swings and rapid cycling. Novel methods of thermal swing adsorption and thermally-enhanced pressure swing adsorption are also described. In some aspects of the invention, a gas is passed through the adsorbent thus allowing heat exchangers to be very close to all portions of the adsorbent and utilize less space. In another aspect, the adsorption media is selectively heated, thus reducing energy costs. Methods and systems for gas adsorption/desorption having improved energy efficiency with capability of short cycle times are also described. In another aspect, the apparatus ormore » methods utilize heat exchange channels of varying lengths that have volumes controlled to provide equal heat fluxes. Methods of fuel cell startup are also described. Advantages of the invention include the ability to use (typically) 30-100 times less adsorbent compared to conventional systems.« less
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