A study of polymerflooding and residual oil saturation
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Two principal topics were examined in this thesis: the effect of polymerflooding on residual oil saturation, and the correlation of polymer apparent viscosity in porous media with steady state viscometer measurements. Polymerfloods were conducted to examine residual oil saturations in both relatively homogeneous Berea sandstone and heterogeneous Antolini sandstone. Secondary and tertiary polymerfloods in Berea sandstone did not lower residual oil saturation. Tertiary polymerfloods in Antolini sandstone did not lower residual oil saturation to any significant degree, but a secondary polymerflood in Antolini sandstone did lower the residual oil saturation by 0.07 saturation. Three single phase polymerfloods were conducted to measure additional data for correlating polymer apparent viscosity in porous media. A dimensional group is proposed for use as a correlating variable for the shear rate coefficient, a variable necessary to predict polymer apparent viscosity in porous media. The correlation gives good results for xanthan gum data but may need further refinement for hydrolyzed polyacrylamide. The results of this work regarding the effect of polymerflooding on residual oil saturation and the correlation of polymer viscosity in porous media provide a foundation for further research.