Experimental Investigation and Modelling of Asphaltene Precipitation during Gas Injection

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Faculty of Chemical and Petroleum Engineering, Razi University, Kermanshah, Iran

2 Department of Petroleum Engineering, Petroleum University of Technology (PUT), Ahvaz, Iran


Due to the limited crude oil resources, the role of enhanced oil recovery (EOR) techniques in the production of the oil that has not been extracted during the primary and secondary oil production techniques is crucial. Gas injection is known as an important EOR technology, but one of the main concerns during gas injection is asphaltene precipitation and deposition within reservoir formation. In this study, the effect of temperature (ranges 376-416 K) and concentration of injected gas (N2 (10, 20 and 40, mole percent) and first separator gas (20, 40 and 60, mole percent)) on the onset pressures and amount of asphaltene precipitation in one of the Iranian oil reservoirs were investigated. Two series of experiments were accomplished on live oil by gravimetric method; first: injection of different concentrationsof nitrogen and first separator gas at reservoir temperature and under different pressures (3000-8000 psia) and second: natural depletion at different temperatures. Besides, the experimental data of asphaltene precipitation due to N2, first separator gas, and also CO2 injection were compared together. Finally, the experimental data were modeled with a solid model. The results indicate that the amount of asphaltene precipitation due to N2 injection (0.1-0.2 wt %) is lower than the first separator gas and CO2 injection at the same concentration. Experiments show that in the range of experimental temperatures the asphaltene precipitation changes up to 0.06 wt %. For pressures below the bubble pressure (~ 4700 psi), precipitation changes directly with temperature, and indirect relation is observed for pressures above the bubble point pressure.


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