New! View global litigation for patent families

US20070199700A1 - Enhanced hydrocarbon recovery by in situ combustion of oil sand formations - Google Patents

Enhanced hydrocarbon recovery by in situ combustion of oil sand formations Download PDF

Info

Publication number
US20070199700A1
US20070199700A1 US11278470 US27847006A US2007199700A1 US 20070199700 A1 US20070199700 A1 US 20070199700A1 US 11278470 US11278470 US 11278470 US 27847006 A US27847006 A US 27847006A US 2007199700 A1 US2007199700 A1 US 2007199700A1
Authority
US
Grant status
Application
Patent type
Prior art keywords
well
gas
fracture
bore
fractures
Prior art date
Legal status (The legal status is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the status listed.)
Abandoned
Application number
US11278470
Inventor
Grant Hocking
Current Assignee (The listed assignees may be inaccurate. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation or warranty as to the accuracy of the list.)
GeoSierra LLC
Original Assignee
GeoSierra LLC
Priority date (The priority date is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the date listed.)
Filing date
Publication date

Links

Images

Classifications

    • EFIXED CONSTRUCTIONS
    • E21EARTH DRILLING; MINING
    • E21BEARTH DRILLING, e.g. DEEP DRILLING; OBTAINING OIL, GAS, WATER, SOLUBLE OR MELTABLE MATERIALS OR A SLURRY OF MINERALS FROM WELLS
    • E21B43/00Methods or apparatus for obtaining oil, gas, water, soluble or meltable materials or a slurry of minerals from wells
    • E21B43/16Enhanced recovery methods for obtaining hydrocarbons
    • E21B43/24Enhanced recovery methods for obtaining hydrocarbons using heat, e.g. steam injection
    • E21B43/243Combustion in situ
    • E21B43/247Combustion in situ in association with fracturing processes or crevice forming processes

Abstract

The present invention is a method and apparatus for the enhanced recovery of petroleum fluids from the subsurface by in situ combustion of the hydrocarbon deposit, from injection of an oxygen rich gas and drawing off a flue gas to control the rate and propagation of the combustion front to be predominantly vertical and propagating horizontally guided by the vertical highly permeable hydraulic fractures. Multiple propped vertical hydraulic fractures are constructed from the well bore into the oil sand formation and filled with a highly permeable proppant containing hydrodesulfurization and thermal cracking catalysts. The oxygen rich gas is injected via the well bore into the top of the propped fractures, the in situ hydrocarbons are ignited by a downhole burner and the generated flue gas extracted from the bottom of the propped fractures through the well bore and mobile oil gravity drains through the propped fractures to the bottom of the well bore and pumped to the surface. The combustion front is predominantly upright, providing good vertical and lateral sweep, due to the flue gas exhaust control provided by the highly permeable propped fractures.

Description

    RELATED APPLICATION
  • [0001]
    This application is a continuation-in-part of copending U.S. patent application Ser. No. 11/363,540, filed Feb. 27, 2006.
  • TECHNICAL FIELD
  • [0002]
    The present invention generally relates to the enhanced recovery of petroleum fluids from the subsurface by the injection of an oxygen enriched gas into the oil sand formation for in situ combustion of the viscous heavy oil and bitumen in situ, and more particularly to a method and apparatus to extract a particular fraction of the in situ hydrocarbon reserve by controlling the access to the in situ bitumen, the rate and growth of the combustion front, the flue gas composition, the flow of produced hydrocarbons through a hot spent previously combusted zone containing a catalyst for promoting in situ hydrodesulfurization and thermal cracking, the operating reservoir pressures of the in situ process, thus resulting in increased production and quality of the produced petroleum fluids from the subsurface formation as well as limiting water inflow into the process zone.
  • BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
  • [0003]
    Heavy oil and bitumen oil sands are abundant in reservoirs in many parts of the world such as those in Alberta, Canada, Utah and California in the United States, the Orinoco Belt of Venezuela, Indonesia, China and Russia. The hydrocarbon reserves of the oil sand deposit is extremely large in the trillions of barrels, with recoverable reserves estimated by current technology in the 300 billion barrels for Alberta, Canada and a similar recoverable reserve for Venezuela. These vast heavy oil (defined as the liquid petroleum resource of less than 20° API gravity) deposits are found largely in unconsolidated sandstones, being high porosity permeable cohensionless sands with minimal grain to grain cementation. The hydrocarbons are extracted from the oils sands either by mining or in situ methods.
  • [0004]
    The heavy oil and bitumen in the oil sand deposits have high viscosity at reservoir temperatures and pressures. While some distinctions have arisen between tar or oil sands, bitumen and heavy oil, these terms will be used interchangeably herein. The oil sand deposits in Alberta, Canada extend over many square miles and vary in thickness up to hundreds of feet thick. Although some of these deposits lie close to the surface and are suitable for surface mining, the majority of the deposits are at depth ranging from a shallow depth of 150 feet down to several thousands of feet below ground surface. The oil sands located at these depths constitute some of the world's largest presently known petroleum deposits. The oil sands contain a viscous hydrocarbon material, commonly referred to as bitumen, in an amount that ranges up to 15% by weight. Bitumen is effectively immobile at typical reservoir temperatures. For example at 15° C., bitumen has a viscosity of ˜1,000,000 centipoise. However at elevated temperatures the bitumen viscosity changes considerably to be ˜350 centipoise at 100° C. down to ˜10 centipoise at 180° C. The oil sand deposits have an inherently high permeability ranging from ˜1 to 10 Darcy, thus upon heating, the heavy oil becomes mobile and can easily drain from the deposit.
  • [0005]
    In situ methods of hydrocarbon extraction from the oil sands consist of cold production, in which the less viscous petroleum fluids are extracted from vertical and horizontal wells with sand exclusion screens, CHOPS (cold heavy oil production system) cold production with sand extraction from vertical and horizontal wells with large diameter perforations thus encouraging sand to flow into the well bore, CSS (cyclic steam stimulation) a huff and puff cyclic steam injection system with gravity drainage of heated petroleum fluids using vertical and horizontal wells, streamflood using injector wells for steam injection and producer wells on 5 and 9 point layout for vertical wells and combinations of vertical and horizontal wells, SAGD (steam assisted gravity drainage) steam injection and gravity production of heated hydrocarbons using two horizontal wells, VAPEX (vapor assisted petroleum extraction) solvent vapor injection and gravity production of diluted hydrocarbons using horizontal wells, and the THAI (toe heel air injection), a vertical injector well located near the base of a horizontal producer well for an in situ combustion process, and combinations of these methods.
  • [0006]
    Cyclic steam stimulation and steamflood hydrocarbon enhanced recovery methods have been utilized worldwide, beginning in 1956 with the discovery of CSS, huff and puff or steam-soak in Mene Grande field in Venezuela and for steamflood in the early 1960s in the Kern River field in California. These steam assisted hydrocarbon recovery methods including a combination of steam and solvent are described, see U.S. Pat. No. 3,739,852 to Woods et al, U.S. Pat. No. 4,280,559 to Best, U.S. Pat. No. 4,519,454 to McMillen, U.S. Pat. No. 4,697,642 to Vogel, and U.S. Pat. No. 6,708,759 to Leaute et al. The CSS process raises the steam injection pressure above the formation fracturing pressure to create fractures within the formation and enhance the surface area access of the steam to the bitumen. Successive steam injection cycles reenter earlier created fractures and thus the process becomes less efficient over time. CSS is generally practiced in vertical wells, but systems are operational in horizontal wells, but have complications due to localized fracturing and steam entry and the lack of steam flow control along the long length of the horizontal well bore.
  • [0007]
    Descriptions of the SAGD process and modifications are described, see U.S. Pat. No. 4,344,485 to Butler, and U.S. Pat. No. 5,215,146 to Sanchez and thermal extraction methods in U.S. Pat. No. 4,085,803 to Butler, U.S. Pat. No. 4,099,570 to Vandergrift, and U.S. Pat. No. 4,116,275 to Butler et al. The SAGD process consists of two horizontal wells at the bottom of the hydrocarbon formation, with the injector well located approximately 10-15 feet vertically above the producer well. The steam injection pressures exceed the formation fracturing pressure in order to establish connection between the two wells and develop a steam chamber in the oil sand formation. Similar to CSS, the SAGD method has complications, albeit less severe than CSS, due to the lack of steam flow control along the long section of the horizontal well and the difficulty of controlling the growth of the steam chamber.
  • [0008]
    A thermal steam extraction process referred to a HASDrive (heated annulus steam drive) and modifications thereof are described to heat and hydrogenate the heavy oils insitu in the presence of a metal catalyst, see U.S. Pat. No. 3,994,340 to Anderson et al, U.S. Pat. No. 4,696,345 to Hsueh, U.S. Pat. No. 4,706,751 to Gondouin, U.S. Pat. No. 5,054,551 to Duerksen, and U.S. Pat. No. 5,145,003 to Duerksen. It is disclosed that at elevated temperature and pressure the injection of hydrogen or a combination of hydrogen and carbon monoxide to the heavy oil in situ in the presence of a metal catalyst will hydrogenate and thermal crack at least a portion of the petroleum in the formation.
  • [0009]
    Thermal recovery processes using steam require large amounts of energy to produce the steam, using either natural gas or heavy fractions of produced synthetic crude. Burning these fuels generates significant quantities of greenhouse gases, such as carbon dioxide. Also, the steam process uses considerable quantities of water, which even though may be reprocessed, involves recycling costs and energy use. Therefore a less energy intensive oil recovery process is desirable.
  • [0010]
    Solvents applied to the bitumen soften the bitumen and reduce its viscosity and provide a non-thermal mechanism to improve the bitumen mobility. Hydrocarbon solvents consist of vaporized light hydrocarbons such as ethane, propane, or butane or liquid solvents such as pipeline diluents, natural condensate streams, or fractions of synthetic crudes. The diluent can be added to steam and flashed to a vapor state or be maintained as a liquid at elevated temperature and pressure, depending on the particular diluent composition. While in contact with the bitumen, the saturated solvent vapor dissolves into the bitumen. This diffusion process is due to the partial pressure difference in the saturated solvent vapor and the bitumen. As a result of the diffusion of the solvent into the bitumen, the oil in the bitumen becomes diluted and mobile and will flow under gravity. The resultant mobile oil may be deasphalted by the condensed solvent, leaving the heavy asphaltenes behind within the oil sand pore space with little loss of inherent fluid mobility in the oil sands due to the small weight percent (5-15%) of the asphaltene fraction to the original oil in place. Deasphalting the oil from the oil sands produces a high grade quality product by 3°-5° API gravity. If the reservoir temperature is elevated the diffusion rate of the solvent into the bitumen is raised considerably being two orders of magnitude greater at 100° C. compared to ambient reservoir temperatures of ˜15° C.
  • [0011]
    Solvent assisted recovery of hydrocarbons in continuous and cyclic modes are described including the VAPEX process and combinations of steam and solvent plus heat, see U.S. Pat. No. 4,450,913 to Allen et al, U.S. Pat. No. 4,513,819 to Islip et al, U.S. Pat. No. 5,407,009 to Butler et al, U.S. Pat. No. 5,607,016 to Butler, U.S. Pat. No. 5,899,274 to Frauenfeld et al, U.S. Pat. No. 6,318,464 to Mokrys, U.S. Patent No. 6,769,486 to Lim et al, and U.S. Pat. No. 6,883,607 to Nenniger et al. The VAPEX process generally consists of two horizontal wells in a similar configuration to SAGD; however, there are variations to this including spaced horizontal wells and a combination of horizontal and vertical wells. The startup phase for the VAPEX process can be lengthy and take many months to develop a controlled connection between the two wells and avoid premature short circuiting between the injector and producer. The VAPEX process with horizontal wells has similar issues to CSS and SAGD in horizontal wells, due to the lack of solvent flow control along the long horizontal well bore, which can lead to non-uniformity of the vapor chamber development and growth along the horizontal well bore.
  • [0012]
    Direct heating and electrical heating methods for enhanced recovery of hydrocarbons from oil sands have been disclosed in combination with steam, hydrogen, catalysts, and/or solvent injection at temperatures to ensure the petroleum fluids gravity drain from the formation and at significantly higher temperatures (300° to 400° range and above) to pyrolysis the oil sands. See U.S. Pat. No. 2,780,450 to Ljungström, U.S. Pat. No. 4,597,441 to Ware et al, U.S. Pat. No. 4,926,941 to Glandt et al, U.S. Pat. No. 5,046,559 to Glandt, U.S. Pat. No. 5,060,726 to Glandt et al, U.S. Pat. No. 5,297,626 to Vinegar et al, U.S. Pat. No. 5,392,854 to Vinegar et al, and U.S. Pat. No. 6,722,431 to Karanikas et al
  • [0013]
    In situ combustion processes have been disclosed. See U.S. Pat. No. 4, 454,916 to Shu, U.S. Pat. No. 4,474,237 to Shu, U.S Pat. No. 4,566,536 to Holmes et al, 4,598,770 to Shu et al, U.S. Pat. No. 4,625,800 to Venkatesan, U.S. Pat. No. 4,993,490 to Stephens et al, U.S. Pat. No. 5,211,230 to Ostapovich et al, U.S. Pat. No. 5,273,111 to Brannan et al, U.S. Pat. No. 5,339,897 to Leaute, U.S. Pat. No. 5,413,224 to Laali, U.S. Pat. No. 5,626,191 to Greaves et al, U.S. Pat. No. 5,824,214 to Paul et al, U.S. Pat. No. 5,871,637 to Brons, U.S. Pat. No. 5,954,946 to Klazinga et al, and U.S. Pat. No. 6,412,557 to Ayasse et al. Many of these disclosed methods involve in situ combustion of the in situ hydrocarbon deposit with a combination of vertical and horizontal wells. The process involves the injection of an oxygen rich injection gas, igniting the in situ hydrocarbons, either by direct ignition from a standard downhole burner, or from self ignition, and drawing the produced flue gas off to create a gas pressure gradient to control the rate and progress of the combustion front. The difficulties experienced by the various disclosed methods are: 1) initiating connection of the injector, the combustion zone, and producer to get the process started, 2) the potential for a liquid and/or gravity block, i.e. mobile hydrocarbons can not flow to the producer or combustion (flue) gases rise vertically rather than flow to the producer, and 3) the difficulty of raising the temperature of the produced hydrocarbons to initiate some form of hydrodesulfurization and/or thermal cracking. Some of the disclosed processes overcome some of these difficulties by heating a zone and thus connecting the injector and producer prior to injection of the oxygen rich gas injection and ignition of the hydrocarbon formation. Other methods force the produced hydrocarbons to flow through a spent previously combusted zone to raise the temperature to induce some form of cracking process, while others propose placement of a catalyst in the producer well to promote further cracking at the elevated temperatures. The THAI (toe heel air injection) combustion process has been demonstrated in laboratory tests for application to oil sands, involving air injection in a vertical well with the producer being a horizontal well at a deeper depth and the combustion front progressing horizontally along the alignment of the producer and downwards towards the producer.
  • [0014]
    In situ processes involving downhole heaters are described in U.S. Pat. No. 2,634,961 to Ljungström, U.S. Pat. No. 2,732,195 to Ljungström, U.S. Pat. No. 2,780,450 to Ljungström. Electrical heaters are described for heating viscous oils in the forms of downhole heaters and electrical heating of tubing and/or casing, see U.S. Pat. No. 2,548,360 to Germain, U.S. Pat. No. 4,716,960 to Eastlund et al, U.S. Pat. No. 5,060,287 to Van Egmond, U.S. Pat. No. 5,065,818 to Van Egmond, U.S. Pat. No. 6,023,554 to Vinegar and U.S. Pat. No. 6,360,819 to Vinegar. Flameless downhole combustor heaters are described, see U.S. Pat. No. 5,255,742 to Mikus, U.S. Pat. No. 5,404,952 to Vinegar et al, U.S. Pat. No. 5,862,858 to Wellington et al, and U.S. Pat. No. 5,899,269 to Wellington et al. Surface fired heaters or surface burners may be used to heat a heat transferring fluid pumped downhole to heat the formation as described in U.S. Pat. No. 6,056,057 to Vinegar et al and U.S. Pat. No. 6,079,499 to Mikus et al.
  • [0015]
    The thermal and solvent methods of enhanced oil recovery from oil sands, all suffer from a lack of surface area access to the in place bitumen. Thus the reasons for raising steam pressures above the fracturing pressure in CSS and during steam chamber development in SAGD, are to increase surface area of the steam with the in place bitumen. Similarly the VAPEX process is limited by the available surface area to the in place bitumen, because the diffusion process at this contact controls the rate of softening of the bitumen. Likewise during steam chamber growth in the SAGD process the contact surface area with the in place bitumen is virtually a constant, thus limiting the rate of heating of the bitumen. Therefore, the methods, heat and solvent, or a combination thereof, would greatly benefit from a substantial increase in contact surface area with the in place bitumen. Hydraulic fracturing of low permeable reservoirs has been used to increase the efficiency of such processes and CSS methods involving fracturing are described in U.S. Pat. No. 3,739,852 to Woods et al, U.S. Pat. No. 5,297,626 to Vinegar et al, and U.S. Pat. No. 5,392,854 to Vinegar et al. Also during initiation of the SAGD process, overpressurized conditions are usually imposed to accelerated the steam chamber development, followed by a prolonged period of underpressurized condition to reduce the steam to oil ratio. Maintaining reservoir pressure during heating of the oil sands has the significant benefit of minimizing water inflow to the heated zone and to the well bore.
  • [0016]
    In situ combustion methods all suffer from poor connection between the injected gas location, combustion zone, and producer especially at initiation, and during propagation and growth of the combustion front if barren or shale lenses are present or if the oil sands have intrinsically low vertical permeability. The in situ combustion method would benefit greatly from having good connection between the injected gas location, combustion zone, and the producer both at the initiation configuration and throughout the propagation and growth of the combustion front. Highly permeable vertical propped hydraulic fractures extending radially from the injector would greatly benefit the process by providing a connection to control the rate and growth of the combustion front and thus guide the combustion front radially between the propped fracture system.
  • [0017]
    Hydraulic fracturing of petroleum recovery wells enhances the extraction of fluids from low permeable formations due to the high permeability of the induced fracture and the size and extent of the fracture. A single hydraulic fracture from a well bore results in increased yield of extracted fluids from the formation. Hydraulic fracturing of highly permeable unconsolidated formations has enabled higher yield of extracted fluids from the formation and also reduced the inflow of formation sediments into the well bore. Typically the well casing is cemented into the bore hole, and the casing perforated with shots of generally 0.5 inches in diameter over the depth interval to be fractured. The formation is hydraulically fractured by injecting the fracture fluid into the casing, through the perforations, and into the formation. The hydraulic connectivity of the hydraulic fracture or fractures formed in the formation may be poorly connected to the well bore due to restrictions and damage due to the perforations. Creating a hydraulic fracture in the formation that is well connected hydraulically to the well bore will increase the yield from the well, result in less inflow of formation sediments into the well bore, and result in greater recovery of the petroleum reserves from the formation.
  • [0018]
    Turning now to the prior art, hydraulic fracturing of subsurface earth formations to stimulate production of hydrocarbon fluids from subterranean formations has been carried out in many parts of the world for over fifty years. The earth is hydraulically fractured either through perforations in a cased well bore or in an isolated section of an open bore hole. The horizontal and vertical orientation of the hydraulic fracture is controlled by the compressive stress regime in the earth and the fabric of the formation. It is well known in the art of rock mechanics that a fracture will occur in a plane perpendicular to the direction of the minimum stress, see U.S. Pat. No. 4,271,696 to Wood. At significant depth, one of the horizontal stresses is generally at a minimum, resulting in a vertical fracture formed by the hydraulic fracturing process. It is also well known in the art that the azimuth of the vertical fracture is controlled by the orientation of the minimum horizontal stress in consolidated sediments and brittle rocks.
  • [0019]
    At shallow depths, the horizontal stresses could be less or greater than the vertical overburden stress. If the horizontal stresses are less than the vertical overburden stress, then vertical fractures will be produced; whereas if the horizontal stresses are greater than the vertical overburden stress, then a horizontal fracture will be formed by the hydraulic fracturing process.
  • [0020]
    Hydraulic fracturing generally consists of two types, propped and unpropped fracturing. Unpropped fracturing consists of acid fracturing in carbonate formations and water or low viscosity water slick fracturing for enhanced gas production in tight formations. Propped fracturing of low permeable rock formations enhances the formation permeability for ease of extracting petroleum hydrocarbons from the formation. Propped fracturing of high permeable formations is for sand control, i.e. to reduce the inflow of sand into the well bore, by placing a highly permeable propped fracture in the formation and pumping from the fracture thus reducing the pressure gradients and fluid velocities due to draw down of fluids from the well bore. Hydraulic fracturing involves the literally breaking or fracturing the rock by injecting a specialized fluid into the well bore passing through perforations in the casing to the geological formation at pressures sufficient to initiate and/or extend the fracture in the formation. The theory of hydraulic fracturing utilizes linear elasticity and brittle failure theories to explain and quantify the hydraulic fracturing process. Such theories and models are highly developed and generally sufficient for the art of initiating and propagating hydraulic fractures in brittle materials such as rock, but are totally inadequate in the understanding and art of initiating and propagating hydraulic fractures in ductile materials such as unconsolidated sands and weakly cemented formations.
  • [0021]
    Hydraulic fracturing has evolved into a highly complex process with specialized fluids, equipment and monitoring systems. The fluids used in hydraulic fracturing vary depending on the application and can be water, oil, or multi-phased based gels. Aqueous based fracturing fluids consist of a polymeric gelling agent such as solvatable (or hydratable) polysaccharide, e.g. galactomannan gums, glycomannan gums, and cellulose derivatives. The purpose of the hydratable polysaccharides is to thicken the aqueous solution and thus act as viscosifiers, i.e. increase the viscosity by 100 times or more over the base aqueous solution. A cross-linking agent can be added which further increases the viscosity of the solution. The borate ion has been used extensively as a cross-linking agent for hydrated guar gums and other galactomannans, see U.S. Pat. No. 3,059,909 to Wise. Other suitable cross-linking agents are chromium, iron, aluminum, zirconium (see U.S. Pat. No. 3,301,723 to Chrisp), and titanium (see U.S. Pat. No. 3,888,312 to Tiner et al). A breaker is added to the solution to controllably degrade the viscous fracturing fluid. Common breakers are enzymes and catalyzed oxidizer breaker systems, with weak organic acids sometimes used.
  • [0022]
    Oil based fracturing fluids are generally based on a gel formed as a reaction product of aluminum phosphate ester and a base, typically sodium aluminate. The reaction of the ester and base creates a solution that yields high viscosity in diesels or moderate to high API gravity hydrocarbons. Gelled hydrocarbons are advantageous in water sensitive oil producing formations to avoid formation damage that would otherwise be caused by water based fracturing fluids.
  • [0023]
    The method of controlling the azimuth of a vertical hydraulic fracture in formations of unconsolidated or weakly cemented soils and sediments by slotting the well bore or installing a pre-slotted or weakened casing at a predetermined azimuth has been disclosed. The method disclosed that a vertical hydraulic fracture can be propagated at a pre-determined azimuth in unconsolidated or weakly cemented sediments and that multiple orientated vertical hydraulic fractures at differing azimuths from a single well bore can be initiated and propagated for the enhancement of petroleum fluid production from the formation. See U.S. Pat. No. 6,216,783 to Hocking et al, U.S. Pat. No. 6,443,227 to Hocking et al, U.S. Pat. No. 6,991,037 to Hocking, and Hocking U.S. patent application Ser. Nos. 11/363,540, 11/277,308, 11/277,775, 11/277,815, and 11/277,789. The method disclosed that a vertical hydraulic fracture can be propagated at a pre-determined azimuth in unconsolidated or weakly cemented sediments and that multiple orientated vertical hydraulic fractures at differing azimuths from a single well bore can be initiated and propagated for the enhancement of petroleum fluid production from the formation. It is now known that unconsolidated or weakly cemented sediments behave substantially different from brittle rocks from which most of the hydraulic fracturing experience is founded.
  • [0024]
    Accordingly, there is a need for a method and apparatus for enhancing the extraction of hydrocarbons from oil sands by in situ combustion, direct heating, steam, and/or solvent injection or a combination thereof and controlling the subsurface environment, both temperature and pressure, to optimize the hydrocarbon extraction in terms of produced rate, efficiency, and produced product quality, as well as limit water inflow into the process zone.
  • SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
  • [0025]
    The present invention is a method and apparatus for the enhanced recovery of petroleum fluids from the subsurface by in situ combustion of the hydrocarbon deposit, by injecting an oxygen rich gas, and by drawing off a flue gas to control the rate and progation of the combustion front to be predominantly radially away from the well bore and downwards to the bottom of the well bore, from which the produced flue gas and hydrocarbons are extracted. Multiple propped hydraulic fractures are constructed from the well bore into the oil sand formation and filled with a highly permeable proppant. The oxygen rich gas is injected via the well bore into the top of the propped fractures, the in situ hydrocarbons are ignited by a downhole burner, and the generated flue gas are extracted from the bottom of the propped fractures through the well bore. A mobile oil zone forms in front of the combustion front, and the oil, under the influence of gravity, drains through the propped fractures to the bottom of the well bore and is pumped to the surface. The injection gas is injected into the well bore and into the propped fractures at or near the ambient reservoir pressure but substantially below the reservoir fracturing pressure. The flue gas is extracted at a rate to control the propagation and shape of the combustion front and the resultant oxygen content of the flue gas. The upright and nearly vertical combustion front propagates horizontally contacting the oil sands and in situ bitumen between the vertical faces of the propped fractures. The combustion front is predominantly upright, providing good vertical sweep and advances radially in the horizontal direction with good lateral sweep, due to the flue gas exhaust control provided by the highly permeable propped fractures. Basically the combustion front is guided by the radially entending vertical hydraulic fractures. The flue gas is composed of combustion gases consisting of carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, sulfur dioxide, and water vapor.
  • [0026]
    The combustion front generates significant heat, which diffuses into the bitumen ahead of the combustion front and heats the bitumen sufficient for mobile oil to flow under gravity. The bitumen softens and flows by gravity through the oil sands and the propped fractures to the well bore. The generated flue gases and produced hydrocarbons flow down the propped fractures to the well bore heating the proppant in the process. The radial and downward growth of the combustion front consumes the in situ hydrocarbon first near the well bore and then progressively extends radially outwards. Thus the proppant in the lower portions of the propped fractures have been significantly heated by the passage of the combustion front and thus are at sufficiently high a temperature to induce thermal cracking of the cooler produced hydrocarbons draining by gravity through this cracking zone to the well bore. A catalyst placed as the proppant in the fractures or placed in a canister in the well bore will further promote hydrodesulfurization and thermal cracking and thus upgrading in situ the quality of the produced hydrocarbon product. Such catalysts are really available as HDS (hydrodesulfurization) metal containing catalysts and FCC (fluid catalytic cracking) rare earth aluminum silica catalysts.
  • [0027]
    The in situ produced hydrocarbon product and flue gas are extracted from the bottom section of the well bore, with the rate of flue gas extraction controlling the rate and growth of the combustion front and the resultant oxygen content of the flue gas. The injected gas could be air or an enriched oxygen injected gas to limit degrading influences that air injection has on the resulting the mobilized oil's viscosity. The process can operate close to ambient reservoir pressures, so that water inflow into the process zone can be minimized. Catalysts for hydrodesulftirization and thermal cracking are contained in the proppant of the hydraulic fractures or within a canister in the well bore. The proppant zone in the lower portions of the hydraulic fractures will be raised to combustion temperatures as the combustion front moves through this zone in a radial growth direction. Therefore the produced hydrocarbons will flow through this hot spent area and thus the catalysts will promote upgrading of the mobile oil by hydrodesulfurization and thermal cracking of some portions of the produced hydrocarbon.
  • [0028]
    Although the present invention contemplates the formation of fractures which generally extend laterally away from a vertical or near vertical well penetrating an earth formation and in a generally vertical plane, those skilled in the art will recognize that the invention may be carried out in earth formations wherein the fractures and the well bores can extend in directions other than vertical.
  • [0029]
    Therefore, the present invention provides a method and apparatus for enhanced recovery of petroleum fluids from the subsurface by the injection of an oxygen enriched gas in the oil sand formation for the in situ combustion of the viscous heavy oil and bitumen in situ, and more particularly to a method and apparatus to extract a particular fraction of the in situ hydrocarbon reserve by controlling the access to the in situ bitumen, by controlling the rate and growth of the combustion front, by controlling the flue gas composition, by controlling the flow of produced hydrocarbons through a hot spent previously combusted zone containing a catalyst for promoting in situ hydrodesulfurization and thermal cracking, and by controlling the operating reservoir pressures of the in situ process, thus resulting in increased production and quality of the produced petroleum fluids from the subsurface formation as well as limiting water inflow into the process zone.
  • [0030]
    Other objects, features and advantages of the present invention will become apparent upon reviewing the following description of the preferred embodiments of the invention, when taken in conjunction with the drawings and the claims.
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
  • [0031]
    FIG. 1 is a horizontal cross-section view of a well casing having dual fracture winged initiation sections prior to initiation of multiple azimuth controlled vertical fractures.
  • [0032]
    FIG. 2 is a cross-sectional side elevation view of a well casing having dual fracture winged initiation sections prior to initiation of multiple azimuth controlled vertical fractures.
  • [0033]
    FIG. 3 is an isometric view of a well casing having dual propped fractures with downhole injected oxygen enriched gas, combustion front, and gravity flow of produced hydrocarbons.
  • [0034]
    FIG. 4 is a horizontal cross-section view of a well casing having multiple fracture dual winged initiation sections after initiation of all four controlled vertical fractures.
  • [0035]
    FIG. 5 is an isometric view of a well casing having four propped fractures with downhole injected oxygen enriched gas, combustion front, and gravity flow of produced hydrocarbons.
  • DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE DISCLOSED EMBODIMENT
  • [0036]
    Several embodiments of the present invention are described below and illustrated in the accompanying drawings. The present invention is a method and apparatus for the enhanced recovery of petroleum fluids from the subsurface by in situ combustion of the hydrocarbon deposit, by injecting an oxygen rich gas, and by drawing off a flue gas to control the rate and progation of the combustion front to be predominantly horizontal away from the well bore. Multiple propped hydraulic fractures are constructed from the well bore into the oil sand formation and filled with a highly permeable proppant. The oxygen rich gas is injected via the well bore into the top of the propped fractures, the in situ hydrocarbons are ignited by a downhole burner, the generated flue gas is extracted from the bottom of the propped fractures through the well bore, and the mobile oil drains by gravity through the propped fractures to the bottom of the well bore and is pumped to the surface. The combustion front is predominantly upright, providing good vertical sweep and advances radially in the horizontal direction with good lateral sweep, due to the flue gas exhaust control provided by the highly permeable propped vertical fractures.
  • [0037]
    Referring to the drawings, in which like numerals indicate like elements, FIGS. 1 and 2 illustrate the initial setup of the method and apparatus for forming an in situ combustion enhanced recovery system of the oil sand deposit, for the extraction of in situ upgraded processed hydrocarbon fluids. Conventional bore hole 5 is completed by wash rotary or cable tool methods into the formation 8 to a predetermined depth 7 below the ground surface 6. Injection casing 1 is installed to the predetermined depth 7, and the installation is completed by placement of a grout 4 which completely fills the annular space between the outside the injection casing 1 and the bore hole 5. Injection casing 1 consists of four initiation sections 21, 22, 23, and 24 to produce two fractures, one orientated along plane 2, 2′ and one orientated along plane 3, 3′. Injection casing 1 must be constructed from a material that can withstand the pressures that the fracture fluid exerts upon the interior of the injection casing 1 during the pressurization of the fracture fluid and the elevated temperatures imposed by the combustion process. The grout 4 is a special purpose cement for high temperature that preserves the spacing between the exterior of the injection casing 1 and the bore hole 5 throughout the fracturing procedure and in situ combustion process, preferably being a non-shrink or low shrink cement based grout that can withstand the imposed temperatures and differential strains.
  • [0038]
    The outer surface of the injection casing 1 should be roughened or manufactured such that the grout 4 bonds to the injection casing 1 with a minimum strength equal to the down hole pressure required to initiate the controlled vertical fracture. The bond strength of the grout 4 to the outside surface of the casing 1 prevents the pressurized fracture fluid from short circuiting along the casing-to-grout interface up to the ground surface 6.
  • [0039]
    Referring to FIGS. 1, 2, and 3, the injection casing 1 comprises two fracture dual winged initiation sections 21, 22, 23, and 24 installed at a predetermined depth 7 within the bore hole 5. The winged initiation sections 21, 22, 23, and 24 can be constructed from the same material as the injection casing 1. The position below ground surface of the winged initiation sections 21, 22, 23, and 24 will depend on the required in situ geometry of the induced hydraulic fractures and the reservoir formation properties and recoverable reserves.
  • [0040]
    The hydraulic fractures will be initiated and propagated by an oil based fracturing fluid consisting of a gel formed as a reaction product of aluminum phosphate ester and a base, typically sodium aluminate. The reaction of the ester and base creates a solution that yields high viscosity in diesels or moderate to high API gravity hydrocarbons. Gelled hydrocarbons are advantageous in water sensitive oil producing formations to avoid formation damage, that would otherwise be caused by water based fracturing fluids. Alternatively a water based fracturing fluid gel can be used.
  • [0041]
    The pumping rate of the fracturing fluid and the viscosity of the fracturing fluid needs to be controlled to initiate and propagate the fracture in a controlled manner in weakly cemented sediments such as oil sands. The dilation of the casing and grout imposes a dilation of the formation that generates an unloading zone in the oil sand, and such dilation of the formation reduces the pore pressure in the formation in front of the fracturing tip. The variables of interest are v the velocity of the fracturing fluid in the throat of the fracture, i.e. the fracture propagation rate, w the width of the fracture at its throat, being the casing dilation at fracture initiation, and tt the viscosity of the fracturing fluid at the shear rate in the fracture throat. The Reynolds number is Re=pvw/μ. To ensure a repeatable single orientated hydraulic fracture is formed, the formation needs to be dilated orthogonal to the intended fracture plane, and the fracturing fluid pumping rate needs to be limited so that the Re is less than 1.0 during fracture initiation and less than 2.5 during fracture propagation. Also if the fracturing fluid can flow into the dilatant zone in the formation ahead of the fracture and negate the induce pore pressure from formation dilation then the fracture will not propagate along the intended azimuth. In order to ensure that the fracturing fluid does not negate the pore pressure gradients in front of the fracture tip, its viscosity, at fracturing shear rates within the fracture throat of ˜1-20 sec−1, needs to be greater than 100 centipoise.
  • [0042]
    The fracture fluid forms a highly permeable hydraulic fracture by placing a proppant in the fracture to create a highly permeable fracture. Such proppants are typically clean sand for large massive hydraulic fracture installations or specialized manufactured particles (generally resin coated sand or ceramic in composition) that are designed also to limit flow back of the proppant from the fracture into the well bore. Due to the high temperatures experienced by the proppant during the combustion process, the proppant material will be specially selected to be temperature compatible with the process and consist of clean strong sands, ceramic beads, HDS and FCC catalysts, or a mixture thereof. The fracture fluid-gel-proppant mixture is injected into the formation and carries the proppant to the extremes of the fracture. Upon propagation of the fracture to the required lateral extent 31 and vertical extent 32, the predetermined fracture thickness may need to be increased by utilizing the process of tip screen out or by re-fracturing the already induced fractures. The tip screen out process involves modifying the proppant loading and/or fracture fluid properties to achieve a proppant bridge at the fracture tip. The fracture fluid is further injected after tip screen out, but rather then extending the fracture laterally or vertically, the injected fluid widens, i.e. thickens, and fills the fracture from the fracture tip back to the well bore.
  • [0043]
    Referring to FIG. 3 for the in situ combustion process of oil sands, the casing 1 is washed clean of fracturing fluids and screens 25 and 26 are present in the casing as a bottom screen 25 and a top screen 26 for hydraulic connection from the casing well bore 1 to the propped fractures 30 and the oil sand formation 8. A downhole electric pump 17 is placed inside the casing, connected to a power and instrumentation cable 18, with downhole packer 19, drop tube 16 for flue gas extraction, drop tube 29 for injection of oxygen enriched gas, and piping 9 for production of the produced hydrocarbons to the surface. The oxygen enriched injection gas is injected into the well bore at the top of the hydraulic fractures, through the drop tube 29, through the screen 26, and into the propped fractures 30 and oil sand formation 8, as shown by flow vectors 12. The injection pressure is very close to reservoir ambient pressure. The in situ hydrocarbons in the formation 8 in the vicinity of the injected gas are ignited by a downhole burner. The resulting combustion front generates significant heat, which softens the bitumen in front of the combustion front 10 and forms a fluid mobile hydrocarbon zone 28 in front of the combustion front 10. The oil in the mobile zone 28 drains by gravity 11 down to the bottom of the hydraulic fracture and enters as shown by flow vectors 15 into the well bore through the lower screen 25 and accumulates at location 13 adjacent the pump 17. The accumulated oil is pumped by the pump 17 as shown by arrows 14 through the tubing 9 to the surface. The flue gas flows down to the lower screen 25 as shown by flow vectors 27 in the spent combusted zone and is extracted by the drop tube 16. The extraction rate of the flue gas controls the propagation rate and growth of the combustion front, and the resultant oxygen content of the flue gas. The extraction rate of the flue gas is balanced to maintain an upright combustion front with good vertical and lateral sweep, and resulting in low oxygen content in the flue gas. The operating pressure of the process is selected to be close to the ambient reservoir pressure to minimize water inflow into the process zone. The highly permeable hydraulic fractures enable close control of flue gas exhaust and thus minimizes the pressure difference between the injected and exhausted gases required to operate the process.
  • [0044]
    The combustion zone 10 grows horizontally/radially from the well bore casing 1, i.e. parallel to the propped fractures 30, and becomes larger with time until eventually the bitumen within the lateral 31 and vertical 32 extent of the propped fracture system is completely mobilized or spent by the combustion process. Upon growth of the combustion zone radially to the lateral extent 31 and vertical 32 extent of the propped fractures 30, the influence of the hydraulic fractures on the connection between the various zones falls off dramatically. It is at this stage that the process may be stopped due to the limited lateral reach of the process compared to the height of the combusted pay zone. That is, the injected gas may preferentially short circuit to the flue gas extraction location at the bottom of the well bore rather than flow to the combustion front some large lateral distance away. The optimum configuration of the process, i.e. its maximum lateral reach, will depend on the height of the pay zone, the horizontal and vertical permeabilities of the pay zone, the extent of barren or shale lenses within the pay zone, and the ratio of propped fracture permeability to host oil sand permeability.
  • [0045]
    Another embodiment of the present invention is shown on FIGS. 4 and 5, consisting of an injection casing 38 inserted in a bore hole 39 and grouted in place by a grout 40. The injection casing 38 consists of eight symmetrical fracture initiation sections 41, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, and 48 to install a total of four hydraulic fractures on the different azimuth planes 31, 31′, 32, 32′, 33, 33′, 34, and 34′. The process results in four hydraulic fractures installed from a single well bore at different azimuths as shown on FIGS. 4 and 5. The casing 1 is washed clean of fracturing fluids and screens 25 and 26 are present in the casing as a bottom screen 25 and top screen 26 for hydraulic connection of the casing well bore 1 to the propped fractures 30 and the oil sand formation 8. A downhole electric pump 17 is placed inside the casing, connected to a power and instrumentation cable 18, with downhole packer 19, drop tube 16 for flue gas extraction, drop tube 29 for injection of oxygen enriched gas, and piping 9 for production of the produced hydrocarbons to the surface. The oxygen enriched injection gas is injected into the well bore at the top of the hydraulic fractures through the drop tube 29, through the screen 26 and into the propped fractures 30 and oil sand formation 8, as shown by flow vectors 12. The injection is at a pressure very close to reservoir ambient pressure. The in situ hydrocarbons in the formation 8 in the vicinity of the injected gas 12 are ignited by a downhole burner. The resulting combustion front generates significant heat, which soften the bitumen in front of the front and forms a fluid mobile hydrocarbon zone 28 in front of the combustion front. The oil in the mobile zone 28 drains by gravity 11 down to the bottom of the hydraulic fracture and enters as shown by flow vectors 15 into the well bore through the lower screen 25 and accumulates at location 13 adjacent the pump 17. The accumulated oil is pumped by the pump 17 as shown by arrows 14 through the tubing 9 to the surface. The flue gas is extracted by the drop tube 16 and flows down to the lower screen 25 as shown by flow vectors 27. The extraction rate of the flue gas controls the propagation rate and growth of the combustion front and the oxygen content of the flue gas. The extraction rate of the flue gas is balanced to maintain an upright combustion front with good vertical and lateral sweep, and results in low oxygen content in the flue gas. The operating pressure of the process is selected to be close to the ambient reservoir pressure to minimize water inflow into the process zone. The highly permeable hydraulic fractures enable close control of flue gas exhaust and thus minimizes the pressure difference between the injected and exhausted gases required to operate the process.
  • [0046]
    Finally, it will be understood that the preferred embodiment has been disclosed by way of example, and that other modifications may occur to those skilled in the art without departing from the scope and spirit of the appended claims.

Claims (28)

  1. 1. A method for the in situ recovery of hydrocarbons from a hydrocarbon containing formation, comprising:
    a. drilling a bore hole in the formation to a predetermined depth to define a well bore with a casing;
    b. installing one or more vertical proppant and diluent filled hydraulic fractures from the bore hole to create a process zone within the formation by injecting a fracture fluid into the casing;
    c. injecting an oxygen rich gas into a section of the bore hole connected to the hydraulic fractures;
    d. igniting the hydrocarbon deposit;
    e. exhausting a combustion gas from the formation;
    f. recovering a hydrocarbon from the formation.
  2. 2. The method of claim 1, wherein the injected gas is air.
  3. 3. The method of claim 1, wherein the injected gas is a mixture of oxygen and carbon dioxide.
  4. 4. The method of claim 1, wherein the produced hydrocarbon mixture flows through a hot spent combusted zone.
  5. 5. The method of claim 3, wherein the combusted gas is separated into carbon dioxide and a fuel gas.
  6. 6. The method of claim 5, wherein the carbon dioxide produced is re-injected into the formation.
  7. 7. The method of claim 1, wherein the proppant of the hydraulic fractures contains a catalyst or a mixture of catalysts.
  8. 8. The method of claim 7, wherein the catalyst is one of a group of hydrodesulfurization catalysts or thermal cracking catalysts or a mixture thereof.
  9. 9. The method of claim 1, wherein a catalyst or mixture of catalysts are placed in a canister in the well bore through which the produced hydrocarbons flow.
  10. 10. The method of claim 9, wherein the catalyst is one of a group of hydrodesulfurization catalysts or thermal cracking catalysts or a mixture thereof.
  11. 11. The method of claim 1, wherein the pressure in the majority of the part of the process zone is at ambient reservoir pressure.
  12. 12. The method of claim 1, wherein at least two vertical fractures are installed from the bore hole at approximately orthogonal directions.
  13. 13. The method of claim 1, wherein at least three vertical fractures are installed from the bore hole.
  14. 14. The method of claim 1, wherein at least four vertical fractures are installed from the bore hole.
  15. 15. A well in a formation of unconsolidated and weakly cemented sediments, comprising:
    a. a bore hole in the formation to a predetermined depth;
    b. an injection casing grouted in the bore hole at the predetermined depth, the injection casing including multiple initiation sections separated by a weakening line and multiple passages within the initiation sections and communicating across the weakening line for the introduction of a fracture fluid to dilate the casing and separate the initiation sections along the weakening line;
    c. a source for delivering the fracture fluid into the injection casing with sufficient fracturing pressure to dilate the injection casing and the formation and initiate a vertical hydraulic fracture, having a fracture tip, at an azimuth orthogonal to the direction of dilation to create a process zone within the formation, for controlling the propagation rate of each individual opposing wing of the hydraulic fracture, and for controlling the flow rate of the fracture fluid and its viscosity so that the Reynolds Number Re is less than 1 at fracture initiation and less than 2.5 during fracture propagation and the fracture fluid viscosity is greater than 100 centipoise at the fracture tip;
    d. a source of oxygen rich gas connected to the casing and the propped hydraulic fractures;
    e. an ignition source for igniting the hydrocarbon deposit in the presence of the oxygen rich gas, wherein a resulting combustion gas from the formation is exhausted through the casing and petroleum hydrocarbons from the formation are recovered through the casing.
  16. 16. The well of claim 15, wherein the injected gas is air.
  17. 17. The well of claim 15, wherein the injected gas is a mixture of oxygen and carbon dioxide.
  18. 18. The well of claim 15, wherein the produced hydrocarbon flows through a hot spent combusted zone.
  19. 19. The well of claim 17, wherein the combusted gas is separated into carbon dioxide and a fuel gas.
  20. 20. The well of claim 19, wherein the carbon dioxide produced is re-injected into the formation.
  21. 21. The well of claim 15, wherein the proppant of the hydraulic fractures contains a catalyst or a mixture of catalysts.
  22. 22. The well of claim 21, wherein the catalyst is one of a group of hydrodesulfurization catalysts or thermal cracking catalysts or a mixture thereof.
  23. 23. The well of claim 15, wherein a catalyst or mixture of catalysts are placed in a canister in the well bore through which the produced hydrocarbons flow.
  24. 24. The well of claim 23, wherein the catalyst is one of a group of hydrodesulfurization catalysts or thermal cracking catalysts or a mixture thereof.
  25. 25. The well of claim 15, wherein the pressure in the majority of the part of the process zone is at ambient reservoir pressure.
  26. 26. The well of claim 15, wherein at least two vertical fractures are installed from the bore hole at approximately orthogonal directions.
  27. 27. The well of claim 15, wherein at least three vertical fractures are installed from the bore hole.
  28. 28. The well of claim 15, wherein at least four vertical fractures are installed from the bore hole.
US11278470 2006-02-27 2006-04-03 Enhanced hydrocarbon recovery by in situ combustion of oil sand formations Abandoned US20070199700A1 (en)

Priority Applications (2)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
US11363540 US7748458B2 (en) 2006-02-27 2006-02-27 Initiation and propagation control of vertical hydraulic fractures in unconsolidated and weakly cemented sediments
US11278470 US20070199700A1 (en) 2006-02-27 2006-04-03 Enhanced hydrocarbon recovery by in situ combustion of oil sand formations

Applications Claiming Priority (13)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
US11278470 US20070199700A1 (en) 2006-02-27 2006-04-03 Enhanced hydrocarbon recovery by in situ combustion of oil sand formations
US11379123 US20070199701A1 (en) 2006-02-27 2006-04-18 Ehanced hydrocarbon recovery by in situ combustion of oil sand formations
US11379825 US20070199705A1 (en) 2006-02-27 2006-04-24 Enhanced hydrocarbon recovery by vaporizing solvents in oil sand formations
US11379829 US20070199706A1 (en) 2006-02-27 2006-04-24 Enhanced hydrocarbon recovery by convective heating of oil sand formations
US11379828 US20070199697A1 (en) 2006-02-27 2006-04-24 Enhanced hydrocarbon recovery by steam injection of oil sand formations
US11626092 US7604054B2 (en) 2006-02-27 2007-01-23 Enhanced hydrocarbon recovery by convective heating of oil sand formations
US11626149 US20070199699A1 (en) 2006-02-27 2007-01-23 Enhanced Hydrocarbon Recovery By Vaporizing Solvents in Oil Sand Formations
US11626175 US7520325B2 (en) 2006-02-27 2007-01-23 Enhanced hydrocarbon recovery by in situ combustion of oil sand formations
US11626112 US7591306B2 (en) 2006-02-27 2007-01-23 Enhanced hydrocarbon recovery by steam injection of oil sand formations
CA 2646323 CA2646323A1 (en) 2006-04-03 2007-03-16 Enhanced hydrocarbon recovery by in situ combustion of oil sand formations
PCT/US2007/064157 WO2007117865A3 (en) 2006-04-03 2007-03-16 Enhanced hydrocarbon recovery by in situ combustion of oil sand formations
US12336092 US20090159277A1 (en) 2006-02-27 2008-12-16 Enhanced Hydrocarbon Recovery by in Situ Combustion of Oil Sand Formations
US12370244 US7870904B2 (en) 2006-02-27 2009-02-12 Enhanced hydrocarbon recovery by steam injection of oil sand formations

Related Parent Applications (1)

Application Number Title Priority Date Filing Date
US11379123 Continuation-In-Part US20070199701A1 (en) 2006-02-27 2006-04-18 Ehanced hydrocarbon recovery by in situ combustion of oil sand formations

Related Child Applications (1)

Application Number Title Priority Date Filing Date
US11277789 Continuation-In-Part US20070199711A1 (en) 2006-02-27 2006-03-29 Enhanced hydrocarbon recovery by vaporizing solvents in oil sand formations

Publications (1)

Publication Number Publication Date
US20070199700A1 true true US20070199700A1 (en) 2007-08-30

Family

ID=38442905

Family Applications (1)

Application Number Title Priority Date Filing Date
US11278470 Abandoned US20070199700A1 (en) 2006-02-27 2006-04-03 Enhanced hydrocarbon recovery by in situ combustion of oil sand formations

Country Status (1)

Country Link
US (1) US20070199700A1 (en)

Cited By (9)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US20090032260A1 (en) * 2007-08-01 2009-02-05 Schultz Roger L Injection plane initiation in a well
US20090032267A1 (en) * 2007-08-01 2009-02-05 Cavender Travis W Flow control for increased permeability planes in unconsolidated formations
US20090166040A1 (en) * 2007-12-28 2009-07-02 Halliburton Energy Services, Inc. Casing deformation and control for inclusion propagation
US7647966B2 (en) 2007-08-01 2010-01-19 Halliburton Energy Services, Inc. Method for drainage of heavy oil reservoir via horizontal wellbore
US7814978B2 (en) 2006-12-14 2010-10-19 Halliburton Energy Services, Inc. Casing expansion and formation compression for permeability plane orientation
GB2481594A (en) * 2010-06-28 2012-01-04 Statoil Asa A method of recovering a hydrocarbon mixture from a subterranean formation
US8151874B2 (en) 2006-02-27 2012-04-10 Halliburton Energy Services, Inc. Thermal recovery of shallow bitumen through increased permeability inclusions
US8955585B2 (en) 2011-09-27 2015-02-17 Halliburton Energy Services, Inc. Forming inclusions in selected azimuthal orientations from a casing section
WO2015180992A1 (en) * 2014-05-26 2015-12-03 Wintershall Holding GmbH Method for the thermal treatment of an underground oil reservoir

Citations (97)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US1789993A (en) * 1929-08-02 1931-01-27 Switzer Frank Casing ripper
US2548360A (en) * 1948-03-29 1951-04-10 Stanley A Germain Electric oil well heater
US2634961A (en) * 1946-01-07 1953-04-14 Svensk Skifferolje Aktiebolage Method of electrothermal production of shale oil
US2732196A (en) * 1956-01-24 Scarifier apparatus
US2780450A (en) * 1952-03-07 1957-02-05 Svenska Skifferolje Ab Method of recovering oil and gases from non-consolidated bituminous geological formations by a heating treatment in situ
US3059909A (en) * 1960-12-09 1962-10-23 Chrysler Corp Thermostatic fuel mixture control
US3301723A (en) * 1964-02-06 1967-01-31 Du Pont Gelled compositions containing galactomannan gums
US3349847A (en) * 1964-07-28 1967-10-31 Gulf Research Development Co Process for recovering oil by in situ combustion
US3739852A (en) * 1971-05-10 1973-06-19 Exxon Production Research Co Thermal process for recovering oil
US3860821A (en) * 1970-10-02 1975-01-14 Raytheon Co Imaging system
US3888312A (en) * 1974-04-29 1975-06-10 Halliburton Co Method and compositions for fracturing well formations
US4075483A (en) * 1976-07-12 1978-02-21 Raytheon Company Multiple masking imaging system
US4085803A (en) * 1977-03-14 1978-04-25 Exxon Production Research Company Method for oil recovery using a horizontal well with indirect heating
US4092540A (en) * 1976-10-26 1978-05-30 Raytheon Company Radiographic camera with internal mask
US4099570A (en) * 1976-04-09 1978-07-11 Donald Bruce Vandergrift Oil production processes and apparatus
US4116275A (en) * 1977-03-14 1978-09-26 Exxon Production Research Company Recovery of hydrocarbons by in situ thermal extraction
US4119151A (en) * 1977-02-25 1978-10-10 Homco International, Inc. Casing slotter
US4271696A (en) * 1979-07-09 1981-06-09 M. D. Wood, Inc. Method of determining change in subsurface structure due to application of fluid pressure to the earth
US4280559A (en) * 1979-10-29 1981-07-28 Exxon Production Research Company Method for producing heavy crude
US4344485A (en) * 1979-07-10 1982-08-17 Exxon Production Research Company Method for continuously producing viscous hydrocarbons by gravity drainage while injecting heated fluids
US4450913A (en) * 1982-06-14 1984-05-29 Texaco Inc. Superheated solvent method for recovering viscous petroleum
US4454916A (en) * 1982-11-29 1984-06-19 Mobil Oil Corporation In-situ combustion method for recovery of oil and combustible gas
US4474237A (en) * 1983-12-07 1984-10-02 Mobil Oil Corporation Method for initiating an oxygen driven in-situ combustion process
US4513819A (en) * 1984-02-27 1985-04-30 Mobil Oil Corporation Cyclic solvent assisted steam injection process for recovery of viscous oil
US4519454A (en) * 1981-10-01 1985-05-28 Mobil Oil Corporation Combined thermal and solvent stimulation
US4566536A (en) * 1983-11-21 1986-01-28 Mobil Oil Corporation Method for operating an injection well in an in-situ combustion oil recovery using oxygen
US4597441A (en) * 1984-05-25 1986-07-01 World Energy Systems, Inc. Recovery of oil by in situ hydrogenation
US4598770A (en) * 1984-10-25 1986-07-08 Mobil Oil Corporation Thermal recovery method for viscous oil
US4696345A (en) * 1986-08-21 1987-09-29 Chevron Research Company Hasdrive with multiple offset producers
US4697642A (en) * 1986-06-27 1987-10-06 Tenneco Oil Company Gravity stabilized thermal miscible displacement process
US4926941A (en) * 1989-10-10 1990-05-22 Shell Oil Company Method of producing tar sand deposits containing conductive layers
US4993490A (en) * 1988-10-11 1991-02-19 Exxon Production Research Company Overburn process for recovery of heavy bitumens
US5002431A (en) * 1989-12-05 1991-03-26 Marathon Oil Company Method of forming a horizontal contamination barrier
US5046559A (en) * 1990-08-23 1991-09-10 Shell Oil Company Method and apparatus for producing hydrocarbon bearing deposits in formations having shale layers
US5054651A (en) * 1987-10-30 1991-10-08 L'oreal Method of packaging under pressure of a fluid, using a system of fermentation creating a propulsive gas
US5060287A (en) * 1990-12-04 1991-10-22 Shell Oil Company Heater utilizing copper-nickel alloy core
US5060726A (en) * 1990-08-23 1991-10-29 Shell Oil Company Method and apparatus for producing tar sand deposits containing conductive layers having little or no vertical communication
US5085818A (en) * 1989-01-03 1992-02-04 Allied-Signal Inc. Process for dimensionally stable polyester yarn
US5103911A (en) * 1990-02-12 1992-04-14 Shell Oil Company Method and apparatus for perforating a well liner and for fracturing a surrounding formation
US5145003A (en) * 1990-08-03 1992-09-08 Chevron Research And Technology Company Method for in-situ heated annulus refining process
US5211230A (en) * 1992-02-21 1993-05-18 Mobil Oil Corporation Method for enhanced oil recovery through a horizontal production well in a subsurface formation by in-situ combustion
US5215146A (en) * 1991-08-29 1993-06-01 Mobil Oil Corporation Method for reducing startup time during a steam assisted gravity drainage process in parallel horizontal wells
US5255742A (en) * 1992-06-12 1993-10-26 Shell Oil Company Heat injection process
US5311360A (en) * 1992-04-28 1994-05-10 The Board Of Trustees Of The Leland Stanford, Junior University Method and apparatus for modulating a light beam
US5335724A (en) * 1993-07-28 1994-08-09 Halliburton Company Directionally oriented slotting method
US5339897A (en) * 1991-12-20 1994-08-23 Exxon Producton Research Company Recovery and upgrading of hydrocarbon utilizing in situ combustion and horizontal wells
US5392854A (en) * 1992-06-12 1995-02-28 Shell Oil Company Oil recovery process
US5404962A (en) * 1993-07-07 1995-04-11 Carter; John T. Collapsible support
US5407009A (en) * 1993-11-09 1995-04-18 University Technologies International Inc. Process and apparatus for the recovery of hydrocarbons from a hydrocarbon deposit
US5431224A (en) * 1994-04-19 1995-07-11 Mobil Oil Corporation Method of thermal stimulation for recovery of hydrocarbons
US5500761A (en) * 1994-01-27 1996-03-19 At&T Corp. Micromechanical modulator
US5607016A (en) * 1993-10-15 1997-03-04 Butler; Roger M. Process and apparatus for the recovery of hydrocarbons from a reservoir of hydrocarbons
US5626191A (en) * 1995-06-23 1997-05-06 Petroleum Recovery Institute Oilfield in-situ combustion process
US5636052A (en) * 1994-07-29 1997-06-03 Lucent Technologies Inc. Direct view display based on a micromechanical modulation
US5710656A (en) * 1996-07-30 1998-01-20 Lucent Technologies Inc. Micromechanical optical modulator having a reduced-mass composite membrane
US5772598A (en) * 1993-12-15 1998-06-30 Forschungszentrum Julich Gmbh Device for transillumination
US5784189A (en) * 1991-03-06 1998-07-21 Massachusetts Institute Of Technology Spatial light modulator
US5824214A (en) * 1995-07-11 1998-10-20 Mobil Oil Corporation Method for hydrotreating and upgrading heavy crude oil during production
US5825528A (en) * 1995-12-26 1998-10-20 Lucent Technologies Inc. Phase-mismatched fabry-perot cavity micromechanical modulator
US5862858A (en) * 1996-12-26 1999-01-26 Shell Oil Company Flameless combustor
US5870221A (en) * 1997-07-25 1999-02-09 Lucent Technologies, Inc. Micromechanical modulator having enhanced performance
US5871637A (en) * 1996-10-21 1999-02-16 Exxon Research And Engineering Company Process for upgrading heavy oil using alkaline earth metal hydroxide
US5899274A (en) * 1996-09-18 1999-05-04 Alberta Oil Sands Technology And Research Authority Solvent-assisted method for mobilizing viscous heavy oil
US5899269A (en) * 1995-12-27 1999-05-04 Shell Oil Company Flameless combustor
US5943155A (en) * 1998-08-12 1999-08-24 Lucent Techonolgies Inc. Mars optical modulators
US5949571A (en) * 1998-07-30 1999-09-07 Lucent Technologies Mars optical modulators
US5953161A (en) * 1998-05-29 1999-09-14 General Motors Corporation Infra-red imaging system using a diffraction grating array
US5954946A (en) * 1994-08-24 1999-09-21 Shell Oil Company Hydrocarbon conversion catalysts
US6023554A (en) * 1997-05-20 2000-02-08 Shell Oil Company Electrical heater
US6034807A (en) * 1998-10-28 2000-03-07 Memsolutions, Inc. Bistable paper white direct view display
US6056057A (en) * 1996-10-15 2000-05-02 Shell Oil Company Heater well method and apparatus
US6076048A (en) * 1997-09-26 2000-06-13 Betzdearborn, Inc. System and method for least squares filtering based leak flow estimation/detection using exponentially shaped leak profiles
US6079499A (en) * 1996-10-15 2000-06-27 Shell Oil Company Heater well method and apparatus
US6216783B1 (en) * 1998-11-17 2001-04-17 Golder Sierra, Llc Azimuth control of hydraulic vertical fractures in unconsolidated and weakly cemented soils and sediments
US6360819B1 (en) * 1998-02-24 2002-03-26 Shell Oil Company Electrical heater
US6372678B1 (en) * 2000-09-28 2002-04-16 Fairmount Minerals, Ltd Proppant composition for gas and oil well fracturing
US6392235B1 (en) * 1999-02-22 2002-05-21 The Arizona Board Of Regents On Behalf Of The University Of Arizona Coded-aperture system for planar imaging of volumetric sources
US6396976B1 (en) * 1999-04-15 2002-05-28 Solus Micro Technologies, Inc. 2D optical switch
US6412557B1 (en) * 1997-12-11 2002-07-02 Alberta Research Council Inc. Oilfield in situ hydrocarbon upgrading process
US6424450B1 (en) * 2000-11-29 2002-07-23 Aralight, Inc. Optical modulator having low insertion loss and wide bandwidth
US6430333B1 (en) * 1999-04-15 2002-08-06 Solus Micro Technologies, Inc. Monolithic 2D optical switch and method of fabrication
US6519073B1 (en) * 2000-01-10 2003-02-11 Lucent Technologies Inc. Micromechanical modulator and methods for fabricating the same
US20030058520A1 (en) * 2001-02-09 2003-03-27 Kyoungsik Yu Reconfigurable wavelength multiplexers and filters employing micromirror array in a gires-tournois interferometer
US6591908B2 (en) * 2001-08-22 2003-07-15 Alberta Science And Research Authority Hydrocarbon production process with decreasing steam and/or water/solvent ratio
US20030164814A1 (en) * 2002-03-01 2003-09-04 Starkweather Gary K. Reflective microelectrical mechanical structure (MEMS) optical modulator and optical display system
US20040008397A1 (en) * 2002-05-10 2004-01-15 Corporation For National Research Initiatives Electro-optic phase-only spatial light modulator
US20040046123A1 (en) * 2001-04-13 2004-03-11 Mcnc Research And Development Institute Electromagnetic radiation detectors having a microelectromechanical shutter device
US6706759B1 (en) * 1998-09-08 2004-03-16 Charlotte-Mecklenburg Hospital Authority Method of treating cancer using dithiocarbamate derivatives
US6722431B2 (en) * 2000-04-24 2004-04-20 Shell Oil Company In situ thermal processing of hydrocarbons within a relatively permeable formation
US6769486B2 (en) * 2001-05-31 2004-08-03 Exxonmobil Upstream Research Company Cyclic solvent process for in-situ bitumen and heavy oil production
US6856449B2 (en) * 2003-07-10 2005-02-15 Evans & Sutherland Computer Corporation Ultra-high resolution light modulation control system and method
US6883607B2 (en) * 2001-06-21 2005-04-26 N-Solv Corporation Method and apparatus for stimulating heavy oil production
US6991037B2 (en) * 2003-12-30 2006-01-31 Geosierra Llc Multiple azimuth control of vertical hydraulic fractures in unconsolidated and weakly cemented sediments
US20060038705A1 (en) * 2004-07-20 2006-02-23 Brady David J Compressive sampling and signal inference
US7006132B2 (en) * 1998-02-25 2006-02-28 California Institute Of Technology Aperture coded camera for three dimensional imaging
US20060157640A1 (en) * 2005-01-18 2006-07-20 Perlman Stephen G Apparatus and method for capturing still images and video using coded aperture techniques
US20080151391A1 (en) * 2006-12-18 2008-06-26 Xceed Imaging Ltd. Imaging system and method for providing extended depth of focus, range extraction and super resolved imaging

Patent Citations (99)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US2732196A (en) * 1956-01-24 Scarifier apparatus
US1789993A (en) * 1929-08-02 1931-01-27 Switzer Frank Casing ripper
US2634961A (en) * 1946-01-07 1953-04-14 Svensk Skifferolje Aktiebolage Method of electrothermal production of shale oil
US2548360A (en) * 1948-03-29 1951-04-10 Stanley A Germain Electric oil well heater
US2780450A (en) * 1952-03-07 1957-02-05 Svenska Skifferolje Ab Method of recovering oil and gases from non-consolidated bituminous geological formations by a heating treatment in situ
US3059909A (en) * 1960-12-09 1962-10-23 Chrysler Corp Thermostatic fuel mixture control
US3301723A (en) * 1964-02-06 1967-01-31 Du Pont Gelled compositions containing galactomannan gums
US3349847A (en) * 1964-07-28 1967-10-31 Gulf Research Development Co Process for recovering oil by in situ combustion
US3860821A (en) * 1970-10-02 1975-01-14 Raytheon Co Imaging system
US3739852A (en) * 1971-05-10 1973-06-19 Exxon Production Research Co Thermal process for recovering oil
US3888312A (en) * 1974-04-29 1975-06-10 Halliburton Co Method and compositions for fracturing well formations
US4099570A (en) * 1976-04-09 1978-07-11 Donald Bruce Vandergrift Oil production processes and apparatus
US4075483A (en) * 1976-07-12 1978-02-21 Raytheon Company Multiple masking imaging system
US4092540A (en) * 1976-10-26 1978-05-30 Raytheon Company Radiographic camera with internal mask
US4119151A (en) * 1977-02-25 1978-10-10 Homco International, Inc. Casing slotter
US4085803A (en) * 1977-03-14 1978-04-25 Exxon Production Research Company Method for oil recovery using a horizontal well with indirect heating
US4116275A (en) * 1977-03-14 1978-09-26 Exxon Production Research Company Recovery of hydrocarbons by in situ thermal extraction
US4271696A (en) * 1979-07-09 1981-06-09 M. D. Wood, Inc. Method of determining change in subsurface structure due to application of fluid pressure to the earth
US4344485A (en) * 1979-07-10 1982-08-17 Exxon Production Research Company Method for continuously producing viscous hydrocarbons by gravity drainage while injecting heated fluids
US4280559A (en) * 1979-10-29 1981-07-28 Exxon Production Research Company Method for producing heavy crude
US4519454A (en) * 1981-10-01 1985-05-28 Mobil Oil Corporation Combined thermal and solvent stimulation
US4450913A (en) * 1982-06-14 1984-05-29 Texaco Inc. Superheated solvent method for recovering viscous petroleum
US4454916A (en) * 1982-11-29 1984-06-19 Mobil Oil Corporation In-situ combustion method for recovery of oil and combustible gas
US4566536A (en) * 1983-11-21 1986-01-28 Mobil Oil Corporation Method for operating an injection well in an in-situ combustion oil recovery using oxygen
US4474237A (en) * 1983-12-07 1984-10-02 Mobil Oil Corporation Method for initiating an oxygen driven in-situ combustion process
US4513819A (en) * 1984-02-27 1985-04-30 Mobil Oil Corporation Cyclic solvent assisted steam injection process for recovery of viscous oil
US4597441A (en) * 1984-05-25 1986-07-01 World Energy Systems, Inc. Recovery of oil by in situ hydrogenation
US4598770A (en) * 1984-10-25 1986-07-08 Mobil Oil Corporation Thermal recovery method for viscous oil
US4697642A (en) * 1986-06-27 1987-10-06 Tenneco Oil Company Gravity stabilized thermal miscible displacement process
US4696345A (en) * 1986-08-21 1987-09-29 Chevron Research Company Hasdrive with multiple offset producers
US5054651A (en) * 1987-10-30 1991-10-08 L'oreal Method of packaging under pressure of a fluid, using a system of fermentation creating a propulsive gas
US4993490A (en) * 1988-10-11 1991-02-19 Exxon Production Research Company Overburn process for recovery of heavy bitumens
US5085818A (en) * 1989-01-03 1992-02-04 Allied-Signal Inc. Process for dimensionally stable polyester yarn
US4926941A (en) * 1989-10-10 1990-05-22 Shell Oil Company Method of producing tar sand deposits containing conductive layers
US5002431A (en) * 1989-12-05 1991-03-26 Marathon Oil Company Method of forming a horizontal contamination barrier
US5103911A (en) * 1990-02-12 1992-04-14 Shell Oil Company Method and apparatus for perforating a well liner and for fracturing a surrounding formation
US5145003A (en) * 1990-08-03 1992-09-08 Chevron Research And Technology Company Method for in-situ heated annulus refining process
US5060726A (en) * 1990-08-23 1991-10-29 Shell Oil Company Method and apparatus for producing tar sand deposits containing conductive layers having little or no vertical communication
US5046559A (en) * 1990-08-23 1991-09-10 Shell Oil Company Method and apparatus for producing hydrocarbon bearing deposits in formations having shale layers
US5060287A (en) * 1990-12-04 1991-10-22 Shell Oil Company Heater utilizing copper-nickel alloy core
US5784189A (en) * 1991-03-06 1998-07-21 Massachusetts Institute Of Technology Spatial light modulator
US5215146A (en) * 1991-08-29 1993-06-01 Mobil Oil Corporation Method for reducing startup time during a steam assisted gravity drainage process in parallel horizontal wells
US5339897A (en) * 1991-12-20 1994-08-23 Exxon Producton Research Company Recovery and upgrading of hydrocarbon utilizing in situ combustion and horizontal wells
US5211230A (en) * 1992-02-21 1993-05-18 Mobil Oil Corporation Method for enhanced oil recovery through a horizontal production well in a subsurface formation by in-situ combustion
US5311360A (en) * 1992-04-28 1994-05-10 The Board Of Trustees Of The Leland Stanford, Junior University Method and apparatus for modulating a light beam
US5255742A (en) * 1992-06-12 1993-10-26 Shell Oil Company Heat injection process
US5392854A (en) * 1992-06-12 1995-02-28 Shell Oil Company Oil recovery process
US5404962A (en) * 1993-07-07 1995-04-11 Carter; John T. Collapsible support
US5335724A (en) * 1993-07-28 1994-08-09 Halliburton Company Directionally oriented slotting method
US5607016A (en) * 1993-10-15 1997-03-04 Butler; Roger M. Process and apparatus for the recovery of hydrocarbons from a reservoir of hydrocarbons
US5407009A (en) * 1993-11-09 1995-04-18 University Technologies International Inc. Process and apparatus for the recovery of hydrocarbons from a hydrocarbon deposit
US5772598A (en) * 1993-12-15 1998-06-30 Forschungszentrum Julich Gmbh Device for transillumination
US5500761A (en) * 1994-01-27 1996-03-19 At&T Corp. Micromechanical modulator
US5431224A (en) * 1994-04-19 1995-07-11 Mobil Oil Corporation Method of thermal stimulation for recovery of hydrocarbons
US5636052A (en) * 1994-07-29 1997-06-03 Lucent Technologies Inc. Direct view display based on a micromechanical modulation
US5954946A (en) * 1994-08-24 1999-09-21 Shell Oil Company Hydrocarbon conversion catalysts
US5626191A (en) * 1995-06-23 1997-05-06 Petroleum Recovery Institute Oilfield in-situ combustion process
US5824214A (en) * 1995-07-11 1998-10-20 Mobil Oil Corporation Method for hydrotreating and upgrading heavy crude oil during production
US5825528A (en) * 1995-12-26 1998-10-20 Lucent Technologies Inc. Phase-mismatched fabry-perot cavity micromechanical modulator
US5899269A (en) * 1995-12-27 1999-05-04 Shell Oil Company Flameless combustor
US5710656A (en) * 1996-07-30 1998-01-20 Lucent Technologies Inc. Micromechanical optical modulator having a reduced-mass composite membrane
US5899274A (en) * 1996-09-18 1999-05-04 Alberta Oil Sands Technology And Research Authority Solvent-assisted method for mobilizing viscous heavy oil
US6079499A (en) * 1996-10-15 2000-06-27 Shell Oil Company Heater well method and apparatus
US6056057A (en) * 1996-10-15 2000-05-02 Shell Oil Company Heater well method and apparatus
US5871637A (en) * 1996-10-21 1999-02-16 Exxon Research And Engineering Company Process for upgrading heavy oil using alkaline earth metal hydroxide
US5862858A (en) * 1996-12-26 1999-01-26 Shell Oil Company Flameless combustor
US6023554A (en) * 1997-05-20 2000-02-08 Shell Oil Company Electrical heater
US5870221A (en) * 1997-07-25 1999-02-09 Lucent Technologies, Inc. Micromechanical modulator having enhanced performance
US6076048A (en) * 1997-09-26 2000-06-13 Betzdearborn, Inc. System and method for least squares filtering based leak flow estimation/detection using exponentially shaped leak profiles
US6412557B1 (en) * 1997-12-11 2002-07-02 Alberta Research Council Inc. Oilfield in situ hydrocarbon upgrading process
US6360819B1 (en) * 1998-02-24 2002-03-26 Shell Oil Company Electrical heater
US7006132B2 (en) * 1998-02-25 2006-02-28 California Institute Of Technology Aperture coded camera for three dimensional imaging
US5953161A (en) * 1998-05-29 1999-09-14 General Motors Corporation Infra-red imaging system using a diffraction grating array
US5949571A (en) * 1998-07-30 1999-09-07 Lucent Technologies Mars optical modulators
US5943155A (en) * 1998-08-12 1999-08-24 Lucent Techonolgies Inc. Mars optical modulators
US6706759B1 (en) * 1998-09-08 2004-03-16 Charlotte-Mecklenburg Hospital Authority Method of treating cancer using dithiocarbamate derivatives
US6034807A (en) * 1998-10-28 2000-03-07 Memsolutions, Inc. Bistable paper white direct view display
US6216783B1 (en) * 1998-11-17 2001-04-17 Golder Sierra, Llc Azimuth control of hydraulic vertical fractures in unconsolidated and weakly cemented soils and sediments
US6443227B1 (en) * 1998-11-17 2002-09-03 Golder Sierra Llc Azimuth control of hydraulic vertical fractures in unconsolidated and weakly cemented soils and sediments
US6392235B1 (en) * 1999-02-22 2002-05-21 The Arizona Board Of Regents On Behalf Of The University Of Arizona Coded-aperture system for planar imaging of volumetric sources
US6396976B1 (en) * 1999-04-15 2002-05-28 Solus Micro Technologies, Inc. 2D optical switch
US6430333B1 (en) * 1999-04-15 2002-08-06 Solus Micro Technologies, Inc. Monolithic 2D optical switch and method of fabrication
US6519073B1 (en) * 2000-01-10 2003-02-11 Lucent Technologies Inc. Micromechanical modulator and methods for fabricating the same
US6722431B2 (en) * 2000-04-24 2004-04-20 Shell Oil Company In situ thermal processing of hydrocarbons within a relatively permeable formation
US6372678B1 (en) * 2000-09-28 2002-04-16 Fairmount Minerals, Ltd Proppant composition for gas and oil well fracturing
US6424450B1 (en) * 2000-11-29 2002-07-23 Aralight, Inc. Optical modulator having low insertion loss and wide bandwidth
US20030058520A1 (en) * 2001-02-09 2003-03-27 Kyoungsik Yu Reconfigurable wavelength multiplexers and filters employing micromirror array in a gires-tournois interferometer
US20040046123A1 (en) * 2001-04-13 2004-03-11 Mcnc Research And Development Institute Electromagnetic radiation detectors having a microelectromechanical shutter device
US6769486B2 (en) * 2001-05-31 2004-08-03 Exxonmobil Upstream Research Company Cyclic solvent process for in-situ bitumen and heavy oil production
US6883607B2 (en) * 2001-06-21 2005-04-26 N-Solv Corporation Method and apparatus for stimulating heavy oil production
US6591908B2 (en) * 2001-08-22 2003-07-15 Alberta Science And Research Authority Hydrocarbon production process with decreasing steam and/or water/solvent ratio
US20050057793A1 (en) * 2002-03-01 2005-03-17 Microsoft Corporation Reflective microelectrical mechanical structure (MEMS) optical modulator and optical display system
US20030164814A1 (en) * 2002-03-01 2003-09-04 Starkweather Gary K. Reflective microelectrical mechanical structure (MEMS) optical modulator and optical display system
US20040008397A1 (en) * 2002-05-10 2004-01-15 Corporation For National Research Initiatives Electro-optic phase-only spatial light modulator
US6856449B2 (en) * 2003-07-10 2005-02-15 Evans & Sutherland Computer Corporation Ultra-high resolution light modulation control system and method
US6991037B2 (en) * 2003-12-30 2006-01-31 Geosierra Llc Multiple azimuth control of vertical hydraulic fractures in unconsolidated and weakly cemented sediments
US20060038705A1 (en) * 2004-07-20 2006-02-23 Brady David J Compressive sampling and signal inference
US20060157640A1 (en) * 2005-01-18 2006-07-20 Perlman Stephen G Apparatus and method for capturing still images and video using coded aperture techniques
US20080151391A1 (en) * 2006-12-18 2008-06-26 Xceed Imaging Ltd. Imaging system and method for providing extended depth of focus, range extraction and super resolved imaging

Cited By (19)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US8863840B2 (en) 2006-02-27 2014-10-21 Halliburton Energy Services, Inc. Thermal recovery of shallow bitumen through increased permeability inclusions
US8151874B2 (en) 2006-02-27 2012-04-10 Halliburton Energy Services, Inc. Thermal recovery of shallow bitumen through increased permeability inclusions
US7814978B2 (en) 2006-12-14 2010-10-19 Halliburton Energy Services, Inc. Casing expansion and formation compression for permeability plane orientation
US8122953B2 (en) 2007-08-01 2012-02-28 Halliburton Energy Services, Inc. Drainage of heavy oil reservoir via horizontal wellbore
US7640982B2 (en) 2007-08-01 2010-01-05 Halliburton Energy Services, Inc. Method of injection plane initiation in a well
US7640975B2 (en) 2007-08-01 2010-01-05 Halliburton Energy Services, Inc. Flow control for increased permeability planes in unconsolidated formations
US7647966B2 (en) 2007-08-01 2010-01-19 Halliburton Energy Services, Inc. Method for drainage of heavy oil reservoir via horizontal wellbore
US20100071900A1 (en) * 2007-08-01 2010-03-25 Halliburton Energy Services, Inc. Drainage of heavy oil reservoir via horizontal wellbore
US20090032267A1 (en) * 2007-08-01 2009-02-05 Cavender Travis W Flow control for increased permeability planes in unconsolidated formations
US7918269B2 (en) 2007-08-01 2011-04-05 Halliburton Energy Services, Inc. Drainage of heavy oil reservoir via horizontal wellbore
US20090032260A1 (en) * 2007-08-01 2009-02-05 Schultz Roger L Injection plane initiation in a well
US7950456B2 (en) 2007-12-28 2011-05-31 Halliburton Energy Services, Inc. Casing deformation and control for inclusion propagation
US7832477B2 (en) 2007-12-28 2010-11-16 Halliburton Energy Services, Inc. Casing deformation and control for inclusion propagation
US20090166040A1 (en) * 2007-12-28 2009-07-02 Halliburton Energy Services, Inc. Casing deformation and control for inclusion propagation
GB2481594A (en) * 2010-06-28 2012-01-04 Statoil Asa A method of recovering a hydrocarbon mixture from a subterranean formation
GB2481594B (en) * 2010-06-28 2015-10-28 Statoil Petroleum As A method of recovering a hydrocarbon mixture from a subterranean formation
US9470077B2 (en) 2010-06-28 2016-10-18 Statoil Asa In situ combustion process with reduced CO2 emissions
US8955585B2 (en) 2011-09-27 2015-02-17 Halliburton Energy Services, Inc. Forming inclusions in selected azimuthal orientations from a casing section
WO2015180992A1 (en) * 2014-05-26 2015-12-03 Wintershall Holding GmbH Method for the thermal treatment of an underground oil reservoir

Similar Documents

Publication Publication Date Title
US3400762A (en) In situ thermal recovery of oil from an oil shale
US3542131A (en) Method of recovering hydrocarbons from oil shale
US3513913A (en) Oil recovery from oil shales by transverse combustion
US3554285A (en) Production and upgrading of heavy viscous oils
US3349847A (en) Process for recovering oil by in situ combustion
US3608638A (en) Heavy oil recovery method
US3342258A (en) Underground oil recovery from solid oil-bearing deposits
US3149670A (en) In-situ heating process
US4754808A (en) Methods for obtaining well-to-well flow communication
US7464756B2 (en) Process for in situ recovery of bitumen and heavy oil
US6328104B1 (en) Upgrading and recovery of heavy crude oils and natural bitumens by in situ hydrovisbreaking
US4682652A (en) Producing hydrocarbons through successively perforated intervals of a horizontal well between two vertical wells
US5771973A (en) Single well vapor extraction process
US5211230A (en) Method for enhanced oil recovery through a horizontal production well in a subsurface formation by in-situ combustion
US6729394B1 (en) Method of producing a communicating horizontal well network
US4696345A (en) Hasdrive with multiple offset producers
US4085803A (en) Method for oil recovery using a horizontal well with indirect heating
Ali Heavy oil—evermore mobile
US4817717A (en) Hydraulic fracturing with a refractory proppant for sand control
US3994340A (en) Method of recovering viscous petroleum from tar sand
US4450913A (en) Superheated solvent method for recovering viscous petroleum
US4856587A (en) Recovery of oil from oil-bearing formation by continually flowing pressurized heated gas through channel alongside matrix
US6662872B2 (en) Combined steam and vapor extraction process (SAVEX) for in situ bitumen and heavy oil production
US3948323A (en) Thermal injection process for recovery of heavy viscous petroleum
US4407367A (en) Method for in situ recovery of heavy crude oils and tars by hydrocarbon vapor injection

Legal Events

Date Code Title Description
AS Assignment

Owner name: GEOSIERRA LLC, GEORGIA

Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:HOCKING, GRANT;REEL/FRAME:017807/0296

Effective date: 20060419