Microscopic and macroscopic visualization of displacement of oil from porous media



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Texas Tech University


Waterflooding has gained a prominent role among the various recovery mechanisms used to recover oil, due to its simplicity and economic advantage. It is therefore imperative that people have a thorough understanding about the waterflooding concepts and possess scientific and engineering imagination to optimize oil production from oil reservoirs. Microscopic visualization at the pore level and macroscopic visualization at the reservoir level could fuel one's imagination thus strengthening the knowledge base and creativity by better understanding the displacement of oil with water.

The present work discusses the waterflood concepts using an interactive computer program to visualize the movement of oil through porous media at the microscopic and macroscopic level. An approach using visualization technique has been adopted to better understand the displacement performance of a linear waterflood using Buckley-Leverett Theory. The visualization technique enhances the visual effects by delivering concise and clear images of oil displacement during a waterflood process. Input parameters such as porosity, saturation and mobility ratio can be varied to visualize the variations in both microscopic and macroscopic oil displacement processes.