Waterflood feasibility of the Brushy Canyon Formation: Red Tank field, Lea County, New Mexico

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Title: Waterflood feasibility of the Brushy Canyon Formation: Red Tank field, Lea County, New Mexico
Author: Green, Kevin Michael
Abstract: The U . S . Department of Energy estimates that 5 billion barrels of oil will remain in existing slope basin clastic reservoirs of the Permian Basin unless new and innovative recovery methods are implemented . This clearly highlights the need for operators to take a more comprehensive look into secondary recovery methods such as waterflooding . In this study , the author used a variety of tools to characterize this reservoir and to predict its response to water injection . Sequence stratigraphy was used to construct the geologic framework of the field . Scanning electron microscopy , X -ray diffraction , and thin section analysises were used to determine the bulk and clay mineralogy of the reservoir . Core analysis helped to determine Archie log parameters and net pay cutoffs needed in determining reserves from volumetrics . Analytical waterflood models recommended in SPE Monograph 3 were used to predict the reservoirs response to water injection . Sequence stratigraphy indicated that the basal Brushy Canyon contains cyclic deposits . Five highstand and five lowstand deposits were identified in three wells along a 1 -1 /2 mile cross -section . These deposits were interpreted to have been transported by a variety of mechanisms during an overall drop in relative sea level within an intermediate -order cycle . The drop in sea level was most likely caused by glaciation with cyclic waxing and waning induced by Milankovic climate cycles . Bulk mineralogy of this reservoir indicate it to be a subarkosic sandstone with quartz , K -feldspar , and carbonate cements comprising the major minerals . Clay mineralogy indicate that the average laboratory volume of clay is 11 .6 % , of which 55 % is illite and 45 % is iron -rich chlorite . The iron -rich chlorite renders this reservoir acid sensitive . There were no significant amounts of swelling clays detected . Using a porosity -permeability transform a minimum core porosity cutoff for a minimum economic permeability of 1 .0 md was 11 % . Formation resisitivity factor measurements indicate a cementation exponent of 1 .41 and an a coefficient of 1 .28 . A saturation exponent of 1 .80 was obtained using a modified Maute method (1992 ) . Relative permeability measurements indicate this reservoir to be uniformly water -wet . From the relative permeability curves it was noted that permeability to oil was insignificant at saturations above 50 % . This value was used as the saturation cutoff in the net pay criteria . Using the Archie equation with the above parameters and cutoffs , along with a volume of clay cutoff less than 15 % , the total reserves in the area studied were 9 .07 MMstb . Waterflood calculation indicate a mobility ratio of 0 .33 and permeability variance of 0 .3 . Fractional flow calculations predict piston like displacement Predicted injection rates are low and should continually reduce throughout the life of the waterflood due to a low average permeability and low water mobility . Using the Dykstra -Parsons and modified Craig -Geffen -Morse methods the predicted waterflood reserves were 276 .7 and 123 .7 Mstb of oil per 40 acre five -spot pattern .
URI: http : / /hdl .handle .net /2346 /20613
Date: 1996-08


Waterflood feasibility of the Brushy Canyon Formation: Red Tank field, Lea County, New Mexico. Master's thesis, Texas Tech University. Available electronically from http : / /hdl .handle .net /2346 /20613 .

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