Synthesis of a high performance surfactant for application in alkaline-surfactant-polymer flooding in extreme reservoirs
Elias, Samya Daniela de Sousa
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Due to the rising cost involve with bringing new fields on stream, of producing residual crude from matured fields, and the significant enhancement in oil recovery provided when compared to conventional water-flooding, increasing attention is being given to chemical flooding technologies. This is particular of interest in mature fields that had previously undergone water flooding. These methods entail injecting chemicals such as surfactant, alkali, and polymer often in mixture into reservoirs to improve oil recovery. In this study a sulfonated surfactant was produced from cheap waste vegetable oils and its performance was assessed in terms of thermal stability at reservoir conditions, adsorption on different reservoir materials, gas chromatography characterization and a limited interfacial tension measurement to evaluate its ability to improve the recovery of crude oil. Waste vegetable oils have great potential as a sustainable and low cost feedstock as well as its low toxicity.