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January, 2021

HUNTING REVIEW MAGAZINE

ORGANIC RECOVERY

The company has developed a new technology partnership to enhance oil recovery from mature fields at comparatively low cost.

In the last year, Hunting has agreed an exclusive collaboration with technology partner, Titan Oil Recovery Inc to establish OOR operations in 23 countries Organic Oil Recovery (OOR) is a unique organic process, which mobilises microbes that are already resident in reservoirs to increase oil production. In the last year, Hunting has agreed an exclusive collaboration with technology partner, Titan Oil Recovery Inc to establish OOR operations in 23 countries.

Headquartered in Aberdeen and with a satellite operation in the in the Middle East, Hunting Energy’s OOR team is actively progressing the export of this technology across three continents. This means working closely with several major operators, as well as with E&P companies to extend reservoir production. Currently the team have more than 10 projects with some 30 pilot operations underway in 24 oilfields, which have production up to 140,000 BOPD. This is demonstrating how the technology can be deployed cost effectively, while being fully scalable to full-field applications without the need for CAPEX. Typically, enhanced recovery methods are costly and require significant investment, so this technology creates a better value proposition for operators, which increases recoverable reserves and by extension lowers the lifting costs.

The ability to increase production aligned to an extremely simple and cost-effective process makes it a unique and attractive proposition

TECH FOCUS

Through batch treatment by injection of supplemental nutrients, the process significantly increases a specific microbial population. As part of their life cycle, those microbes move to the oil/water interface, reducing surface tension and releasing significant quantities of trapped residual oil. This dramatically improves the mobility of the oil in tight pore spaces and ultimate recovery. Another important feature is its ability to tackle the root cause of Hydrogen Sulfide gas (H2S) formation by targeting specific species of microbes to outcompete Sulphate Reducing Bacteria, which arethe cause of this toxic gas formation.

In short: OOR technology directly increases operator’s production and recoverable reserves by accessing trapped oil in the reservoir, which would typically have remained in place. The ability to increase production aligned to an extremely simple and cost-effective process make it an attractive proposition. It marries the emerging science of Reservoir Microbiology with Enhanced Oil Recovery (EOR) for a cost-effective approach to optimising asset value.

OOR TEAM

THE CNOOC SCOTT FIELD INITIATIVE

The challenge set by the customer was to “identify alternative EOR technology to increase production reserves with no CAPEX and minimal offshore footprint”.

The Scott Field, located in the UK Central North Sea, is in a mature stage of development. The oil field is developed in the highly-productive Upper Jurassic Humber Group sandstones of Oxfordian to Kimmeridgian age. It was discovered in 1983, sanctioned in 1990 and first oil produced in 1993. Scott is located about 187 kilometres northeast of Aberdeen in 142 metres of water.

In June 2020, the Scott operating partner, CNOOC Petroleum Europe Limited, undertook a test application in the field. The objective was to demonstrate applied EOR within the tight confines of the offshore environment.

The OOR procedure involved:

2,400 barrels of injection quality seawater and nutrient mix injected at four barrels per minute directly at the wellhead. This included the over-displacement of approximately 400 barrels of injection quality seawater at four barrels per minute.

  • The well was then shut in for seven days (Incubation period)
  • A second nutrient rich over- displacement of approximately 1000 barrels of injection quality seawater at four barrels/min to push newly formed near wellbore ecology further into reservoir
  • The Well was then shut in again for a further incubation period of three days
  • Subsequently the field was returned to production
  • The application of the OOR pilot process for the Scott field consisted of the following steps:

    Step 1 - Field screening of reservoir characteristics and well specific data

    Step 2 - Target well sampling & laboratory analysis

    Step 3 - Single well pilot test (In-Situ Microbial Response Analysis – ISMRA®)

    The pilot test was designed specifically to replicate the laboratory results in the reservoir. Produced water samples were taken pre OOR nutrient injection and just after well flow back. A significant production response is often observed; however, the most important aspect to this step was the microbial response observed in the laboratory from samples taken upon return to production.

    Step 4 - Targeted water flood Implementation

    Progression to step 4 – Targeted water flood implementation will be confirmed once the microbiology and the production impact has been assessed

    Step 5 - Full Field Implementation

    AND THE RESULTS ARE IN

    The effects from the pilot project were impressive and can be summarised as:

  • 1,000% + return on investment from incremental revenue over pilot cost
  • 25,000 + incremental production in barrels of oil per day
  • 4% drop in water cut
  • 1 week payback
  • No wonder Andy Bostock of CNOOC International was happy to comment:

    “Promising results from an elegant EOR technology that can be implemented without a large offshore footprint”.