Schlumberger

Technical Paper: Core Flood Investigation Into Asphaltene Deposition Tendencies in the Marrat Reservoir, South East Kuwait

Society: SPE
Paper Number: 121414
Presentation Date: 2009
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Abstract

Authors from Chevron, Kuwait Oil Company, and Schlumberger describe experimental work conducted to study the precipitation and deposition tendencies of asphaltenes within the Marrat reservoir, southeast Kuwait. Live asphaltenic reservoir fluids and carbonate cores were recovered and used at reservoir pressure and temperature conditions during core flood experiments. The live fluid was fully characterized and subjected to pressure-depletion tests to determine the asphaltene onset point at various temperatures.

The study shows clearly that although asphaltenes may precipitate and deposit from the Marrat reservoir fluid, the propensity for permeability damage is in fact determined by the nature of the rock material. In addition, the tendency of the precipitated asphaltenes to aggregate into larger flocs that are generally friable influences the rock damage potential.

Handling and treatment of asphaltenic fluids will continue to impact operations, project costs, and recovery efficiencies. Understanding their nature and how they impact the subsurface behavior of reservoir fluids will become more pertinent as global demand forces a move toward heavy oils or highly asphaltenic fluids.

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