Impact of Anisotropic Permeability on Oil Recovery Using SP Flooding: A Simulation Approach

Document Type : Research Paper


Department of Petroleum Engineering, Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Petroleum Technology


The study of flow through porous media has been of cardinal gravity in various oil and gas applications like enhanced oil recovery (EOR), acidizing, fracturing, etc. In apprehension to this need, core modeling has become prevalent to understand the flow through porous media. Hence, our study is aimed at simulating and analyzing the effect of surfactant flooding through anisotropic permeability conditions in a subsurface environment.
The simulations were carried out on a 2-D model of the experimental core and were finely meshed for the better convergence. The natural anionic surfactant extracted from Madhuca longifolia oil and Partially Hydrolyzed Polyacryl Amide polymer referenced for the physicochemical properties were used in the simulations. Several sets of directional permeabilities were introduced vertically and horizontally for a single absolute permeability and porosity system.
Results indicated to a trend of oil recovery upright with increasing vertical permeability. A lower areal sweep efficiency and early breakthrough were observed in models with high horizontal permeabilities.
With the ingress of computational fluid dynamics in the oil and gas industry, a more comprehensive understanding of flow patterns allows improved EOR process designs. Our research exploited this to model the multiphase flow through an anisotropic permeability medium and its effect on the oil recovery.