Oil & Natural Gas Projects
Exploration and Production Technologies
A New-Generation Chemical Flooding Simulator
This project was selected in response to DOE's Oil Exploration and Production
solicitation DE-PS26-01NT41048, focus area Reservoir Efficiency Processes. The
goal of the solicitation focus area is to address the need to access oil not
recoverable by conventional methods. Technologies may address gas flooding,
heavy oil recovery, the use of chemicals, reservoir simulation, or microbes.
The goal of this research was to develop a general-purpose, adaptive reservoir
simulator for high-resolution simulations. Specifically, research was to develop
a new-generation chemical flooding simulator capable of efficiently and accurately
simulating oil reservoirs with at least a million gridblocks in less than one
day on parallel computers.
University of Texas
A fully implicit, parallel compositional reservoir simulator called GPAS is
developed with the capability of both equation-of-state gas compositional and
surfactant/oil/brine phase behavior. A simulation of over 1 million gridblocks
of a surfactant/polymer flood was successfully performed using more than 100
There is a greater demand for parallel computing since the oil industry is requiring
reservoir simulations with geological, physical, and chemical models of much
Increased domestic oil production using advanced technologies of improved oil
recovery (IOR) processes involves numerical modeling of such processes to minimize
the risk involved in development decisions. The oil industry is requiring much
more detailed analyses, with increasing demand for reservoir simulations with
geological, physical, and chemical models of much greater detail than in the
past. The computational work required to produce accurate reservoir simulations
is very large for these problems, and thus there is a great need for both parallel
computing and implicit algorithms.
The premise of this research is that a general-purpose reservoir simulator
for several IOR processes should be developed so that high-resolution simulations
of a variety of very large and difficult problems can be achieved using state-of-the-art
computing and computers. Such a simulator is not currently available to the
industry. The goal of this proposed research is to develop a new-generation
chemical flooding simulator that is capable of efficiently and accurately simulating
oil reservoirs with at least a million gridblocks in less than one day on massively
parallel computers or on a cluster of PCs. The simulator also includes the implicit
compositional EOS model to simulate gas processes and a nonorthogonal grid option
so that geological features such as curved reservoir boundaries and impermeable
barriers like shales and faults can be modeled.
Project researchers have:
- Developed a fully implicit, parallel, compositional chemical flooding simulator
and validated it against other simulators.
- Determined that the results of parallel runs are almost identical to those
on a single processor.
- Shown that the simulator scales well using a cluster of workstations.
- Successfully performed field-scale, high-resolution surfactant/polymer flood
simulations with over 1 million gridblocks.
Current Status (August 2005)
Researchers are currently collaborating with an oil company to use the GPAS
simulator in its field operations and designs of surfactant/polymer flooding.
GPAS structural diagram.
A corner-point grid configuation used in a reservoir simulation study with
CPGE cluster set-up.
Final Report [PDF-1.60MB] - January, 2005
John, A., Han, C., Delshad, M., Pope, G.A., and Sepehrnoori, K., A New-Generation
Chemical Flooding Simulator, SPE 89436, accepted for publication in SPE Reservoir
Evaluation and Engineering, 2005.
Han, C., Delshad, M., Sepehrnoori, K., and Pope, G.A., A Fully Implicit,
Parallel, Compositional Chemical Flooding Simulator, SPE 97217, presented
at the SPE Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition, Dallas, TX, October
Six DOE reports.
Project Start: September 1, 2001
Project End: August 31, 2004
Anticipated DOE Contribution: $930,801
Performer Contribution: $234,689 (20% of total)
NETL - Sue Mehlhoff (firstname.lastname@example.org or 918-699-2044)
U. of Texas - Gary Pope (email@example.com or 512-471-3235)