Chemical enhanced oil recovery (cEOR) is a method for recovering remaining oil from fields by injecting a mixture of chemicals into the well to create type III microemulsion. Formulating each mixture design to a specific crude is challenging and time-consuming. Recent developments in computational chemistry methods in the oil and gas industry shows great potential in helping develop these mixtures.
Work from the 1990s and recent advancements in coarse-grained computational chemistry has shown that a stable type III microemulsion presents three main properties: an ultra-low interfacial tension (~10-3 mN/m), a torque value close to 0 and a high bending rigidity (~ kBT).
PETRONAS has developed a simulation-based methodology that combines the automatic generation of molecules from patent literature, computational model development and the simulation of a synthetic crude/surfactant/brine system where the interfacial properties are measured. Use oil testing methods to understand the influence of molecule composition and how modifying their structure can lead to a potential candidate for synthesis.
Scientists have learned what microemulsion properties improve or worsen their performances and modified them on the fly to enhance their efficiency. EOR oil and gas investigations show that it’s now possible to exclusively use computational chemistry simulation to create and screen for surfactant structures without the need for extensive experimental testing. Learn more in this presentation from an industry expert!
A simulation-based protocol of the chemical composition of petroleum reduces the time needed to design and test novel chemicals by 90%. Join our webinar to learn how simulation enables faster chemical development in the oil and gas industry for applications ranging from oil production to transport and demulsification.
Principal Scientist (Production Technology)