Laboratory

 

EOR

 

Due to the unique nature of each oilfield, polymer chemistry must be optimized for field conditions. Injectivity, sweep efficiency, retention, and compatibility with the water and other chemicals have to be studied. In some cases the formulation of polymer with protective additives is necessary to maintain viscosity and to ensure its performance.

SNF has conducted more than 50 field specific studies for customers in the last few years. These include studies of polymer molecular weight, physical form, concentration, inversion systems as well as functional monomers and polymers with protective additives against iron, oxygen, and, H2S. These studies require close cooperation between SNF and the operator and involve medium to long term evaluation of polymer behavior at reservoir conditions. In some cases this includes SNF expertise in polymer synthesis.

SNF can help in the screening and qualification process in the following areas :

  • Polymer synthesis and characterization
  • Monomer selection & integration
  • Polymer selection
  • Rheology
  • Filter ratio
  • Long-term thermal stability
  • Core flooding (for qualification purposes only)
  • Mixing and inversion
  • Compatibility with production chemicals

 

Oil Sands

SNF produces a range of more than 1050 products and launches approximately 100 new polymer products each year from laboratory synthesis to full scale production. Engineering and R&D can move quickly from customer concepts or problems to lab trials to large scale production. Through integration of the various groups new product development from laboratory synthesis through the application chain up to the polymer dissolution equipment and surface facilities is accomplished quickly.

 

Oil Sands Tailings

Due to the unique nature of each tailings stream, polymer chemistry must be optimized for field conditions. Ionicity, molecular weight, macromolecular structure and chemistry have to be studied. In some cases the use of dual polymers treatment may be required for sake of high clarity released water and strong solid deposits.

SNF has conducted many MFT treatment operations since more than 10 years. These studies require close cooperation between SNF and the operator and involve medium to long term evaluation of polymer behavior against changing field conditions (Water salinity, MFT mineralogy …). In some cases this includes SNF expertise in polymer synthesis.

 

Primary and Secondary Bitumen extraction

Addition of caustic is a cheap and common way to improve bitumen recovery by forming natural surfactants, thus facilitating the liberation of bitumen from sand grains and increasing bitumen buoyancy. However, high pHs are known to disperse the clays and fines in the resulting tailings thus making it more difficult to settle.

SNF is developing new chemistries allowing to improve both the bitumen recovery and the froth quality, which has resulted in a serie of patent pending new technologies. These additives can be added at different stages of the process and can selectively target components responsible of performances loss: divalents, fines …

 

Laboratory

With two research centers dedicated to Oil Sands applications (Andrézieux, France and Edmonton, Canada), SNF can help in the screening and qualification processes in the following areas:

  • Polymer synthesis and characterization
  • Monomer selection & integration
  • Polymer selection
  • Quality control (HPLC, GC, viscosity, etc)
  • Rheology
  • Flocculation tests
  • In-line flocculation test rig
  • Cake deposit mechanical characterization
  • Capillary Suction Time
  • Batch Extraction Unit flotation tests
  • Denver Extraction Cell
  • Dean-Stark toluene extraction