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25/6

A Steam-Soak Model for


Depletion-Type Reservoirs
P. J. Closmann, SPE-AIME!,SheUDevelopmentCo.
N. W. Ratliff, SPE-AIME,Shell DevelopmentCo.
N. E. Truitt, SPE-AIME,Shell DevelopmentCo.

Introduction
The widespread application of the steam-soak processl2 has made more essential an understanding of
the basic mechanism of the process. As presently
applied, it consists of injecting an arbitraxy quantity
of steam into a formation, stopping injection and
~:e~~g ~ the weld for ~ome soak time, and then
producing oil from the injection well. Recent reports
on field applications have been given by Bowman and
Gilbert,s Adams and Khan, and de Haan and van
Lookeren.5
Theones to describe the steam-soak process have
been presented by Boberg and Lantz~ Davidson et
al.7, Martin,s Seba and Perry,g and Kuo et af.10 None
of these theones has attempted to include the detailed
distribution of the steam or the oil viscosity distribution. The present method is applicable to depletiontype reservoirs and includes the specific interval of
steam penetration as well as the viscosity distribution
resulting from heating. The method assumes that during the injection phase oil is displaced from the steam
zone until some residual value of oil saturation is attained. During the production phase oil is allowed to
flow back across the outer radius of the steam zone.
The time to resaturate this zone is calculated. Heating
of oil in adjoining strata results in a greatly increased
flow of oil through the heated layers into the well during backflow. To estimate this effect, it is necessary to
use the viscosity-temperature curve for the particular
oil being considered. We hope that t.hk method will be

useful to operating personnel and that it will provide


insight into some of the essential factors of the steamsoak process.
Two types of formation are treated in the present
method. For the first case, zero vertical permeabtity
is assumed, and oil flows only horizontally. This cal-: lloda.-~
1. A A +011,7
culation should be applicable to eases UI
stratified reservoirs. For the second case, isotropic
permeability is assumed, and crossflow into the depleted steam zone is estimated by means of crossflow
factors developed for a range of formation tilcknesses, steam-zone radii, and viscosity distributions.
In many practical cases the vertieal permeability will
be significant but still less than the horizontal permeability. Results for this situation will then be intermediate between the two extremes calculated by this
model. However, it should also be possible to compute crossflow for these cases ,as well. The model
should apply to both light and heavy oil reservoirs.
The relevant data used, such as steam-zone thickness,
residual oil saturation in the steam zone, and oil viscosity, should be chosen accordingly. The effect of
steam distillation is not taken into account explicitly
but could tiect some of the data chosen.

Theory
GeneralDescription
Our general description of the steam-soak process in
a depletion-type reservoir is as follows:

A mathematical model for predicting first-cycle performance of steam stimulation in


depletion-type reservoirs agrees reasonably well with field observations. It can be applied
to both stratified and nonstratified reservoirs.
JUNE, 1970

uyr

757

When steam is injected into a formation, a steam


zone is formed, and heat flows, mostly by conduction,
:--- AL..-... . . ... .. A...lllGUIUU1.
.na,l;..- PfimAa..+a
Inlu UK SU1l uulluul~
Vuuuhl.w.w
Al.. ...
thwc

nllt

into the formation. The steam zone is depleted of oil


to some residual saturation. If the injection well is
then put on production, the reservoir fluids expand
and flow into the well. The fluids also flow into the
steam zone, which is gradually resaturated with oil.
Most of the injected heat remains somewhere in the
vicinity of the injection well and the steam zone. It is
thk heat that causes a reduction in viscous resistance
to oil flow near the well and enables greater production rates to be obtained. The distribution of heat
changes with time. Local values of oil viscosity are
then functions of time.
Basic Mathematical Model
An exact mathematical description of the above process is quite complicated. What is desired is a theoretical description that accounts for the chief physical
factors and that at the same time is not too difficult or
time-consuming to use. A model for computing production response can be setup to include the following ass-umptions (see Figs. 1 and 2):
1. Steam is injected and flows through the formation in a zone of constant thickness and uniform steam
temperature.
2. Heat is lost from the steam zone by vertical
conduction only.
3. Gravity drainage within the reservoir can be
neglected.
4. The outer radius of the heated region (numericfiy equal to the steam-zone radius) remains constant
with time.
5. The temperature, and hence the oil viscosity, at
any given depth below (or above) the steam zone is
taken as constant between the wellbore and the outer
radius of the heated region (steam-zone radius). The
initial temperature distribution is approximated from

the heat loss (Appendix B). Later temperature distributions are obtained by temperature decay from the
nrnfik
jni~~a~~.
~...-, w~~h h~~~ flow by Conduction in the
vertical direction only (Appendix C).
6. Temperature in the steam zone is uniform with
both radial and vertical distances but declines with
time (Appendix C). The soak time constitutes an additional time increment in the temperature decay.
7. The reservoir pressure at the start of production is assumed uniform. The actual value used would
depend on previous reservoir history.
8. Effects of heat in produced fluids are neglected.
9. All effects of dip are neglected.
10. Oil flux for the crossflow case may be approximated by first calculating horizontal flow for a stratified model (no crossflow) and then multiplying this
value by a crossflow correction factor. This factor is
obtained by averaging results for an initial and a later
viscosity distribution (Appendix A). Oil produced by
crossflow appears immediately at the production well
and does not contribute to resaturation of the steam
zone.
Horizontal oil fluxes obtained in Assumption 10
,.L,...,.
..nl,-,.1,-,t~,-lf,w. +:rn~.~.,~.~rr~v~l,,~~ mf thr=
auu v c
~i~

bcubumbtiu

LU.

LUIm-LL.

WA a~u

. w-w.

. ..W

oil viscosity. These values are determined from the


relation

+M+w

(t, t,)

+...

(1)

where the various values pn correspond to temperatures at the various times t.after the start of production. The temperatures are calculated for time-average
steam-zone heat capacities (Append~ C). With this
procedure the results will be tiected by the number
and size of time steps used. However, for initial time
steps of 20 days the effect is not significant. At longer

STEAM
ZONE
nw
.-

BASE

00

VN

BASE

ROCK

INDICATE
(ARROWS
OIL FLOW DURING

DIRECTION
BACKFLOW

. --------

OF
)

Fig. lDiagram of stratified model.


758

. . . . . ....

mLL&HJ&A:
Fig.

ROCK
,nc#. *, m.,

fit\

H&ix

r)

2Diagram of general model with crossflow.


.lOURNAL OF PETROLEUM TECHNOLOGY

times, the size of time steps may be increased, since


production rates and temperature dktribution are not
changing so rapidly.
According to Assumption 2, radial heat conduction is neglected. Thk could be important for largeinterval injection. However, the effect of heat flow
into the cooler part of the reservoir would be to
decrease flow resistance in this zone and to increase
it in the hot zone two effects that tend to offset
each other.
As formulated here, this model applies strictly to
the first steam-soak cycle only. For application to
repeated steam-soak operations, the calculations described here should be modified to include the appropriate temperature dktribution, formation pressure,
and compressibility. The latter two properties can be
estimated from knowledge of the prior reservoir history, including preceding steam-soak cycles. Knowledge of the total amount of heat injected and that
produced by the fluids should make it possible at
least to approximate the temperature dktribution.
With this knowledge the steam zone developed in later
injection cycles can be estimated and the oil production calculation can be extended to this case.
Stratified Model
In the stratified model the oil-bearing regions adjacent
to the steam zone are divided into a number of horizontal layers of uniform thickness (Fig. 1), The
horizontal fluxes through the layers are determined
and added. Cumulative oil flux through each layer is
determined from a QT,. function for a composite
mediumll analogous to that for a uniform medium.~
(Relevant mathematical formulas are presented in
Ref. 11.) If N;(t) is the cumulative production per
unit thickness from the ith layer, then the total cumulative production from the oil-bearing layers is
Ivo(t)=Azs

Ni(t),

(2)

where Az k the chosen interval in Z. It has been found


that sufficient accuracy is obtained by limiting the
thickness of the layers to values no greater than 13 ft.
The time required to resaturate the steam zone with
oil, tfj1I, is calculated by equating the oil volume for
resaturation to the cumulative oil production from a
uniform layer of thickness equal to the steam-zone
thickness; i.e.,

= 2~h,+c,r,2 (p~ PJ Q~(ltill) ,

(4)

is the cumulative production from the


where IV,(t)
steam-zone layer. The model has been set up to in1970

the initial calculated production values would be


lower and the time for resaturation of the steam zone
would be shortened. The method is described in
Appendix A. The ratio of production with crossilow
to production without crossflow has been determined
over a wide range of variations in formation thickness, steam-zone radius, and viscosity distribution.
These ratios, or crossflow factors, are then used to
multiply the cumulative obtained from the stratified
model calculation. Calculations for crossflow correction factors have been made for temperature distributions immediately after steam injection and 409 days
after steam injection. The actual correction for most
cases to be considered will be intermediate between
these two sets. Most of the production times exceeded
1*D= 5,000, after which the crossflow factors did not
change as widely as at shorter times. Hence, one average value was used for a given production curve.
Furthermore, all of the crossflow factors determined
for a given range of values of oil-zone thickness and
steam-zone radius apply to a single total quantity of
heat injected. In the cases presented, approximately
the same total quantity of heat was used. To make
estimates of the crossflow factors in any application,
it is therefore necessary to make calculations as outlined in Appendix A for a range of the variables
(steam-zone radius, oil-zone thickness, and time).
This technique has been chosen as one that should
be suitable for use on a production basis.
For this method, if
F, = crossflow factor for cumulative production,
then

= F, X cumulative production from oilbearing layers in stratified model; (5)

(3)

where Q~(t~i1,) is the dimensionless Q~ function, as


defined by van Everdingen and Hurst for uniform
reservoirs, evaluated at A~1I. The outer radius r. of
the steam zone (Appendix B) is used as the well radius
in this calculation. After the steam zone has been
resaturated, it is treated as a single horizontal layer,
and the composite Q~C function calculation applies.
Then the total cumulative production becomes

JLTNE.

Crossflow Model
To determine results with crossflow of oil into the
steam zone (Fig. 2), a simplified model has been set
up. In this model the crossflow is computed for a
time interval during which the viscosity distribution
in the heated oil-bearing zone is assumed to remain
~~~~fant, The model further assumes that all oil produced by crossflow appears immediately at the production well and does not contribute to resaturation
.c .5. .*. - vfime lf the laffe~ effect were permitted,
(IL u G WGaus -IA.. . . . . . -- .

cumulative production from oil-bearing layers

z(r82 r,,) h,+tio

N(t) = NO(2)+ N*(t) ,

clude the case of an infinitely thin steam zone, as when


steam is injected into a fracture.

and
total production
= production from oil-bearing layers
+ production from steam zone.

(6)

Results
Comparison with Field Data
Presented here is the application of this theory to two
wells, Wells A and B; which produce by depletion.
The reservoir properties (Table 1) chosen for these
759

cases are thought to be representative of the field. A


separate oil-viscosity vs temperature curve is used for
each well. The compressibility chosen corresponds to
that of a reservoir having a small gas saturation, with
the pressure indicated. Results are not so sensitive to
the value of compressibility as they are to that of
permeability.
Results for Well A, including the effect of crossflow, are shown in Fig. 3 for cumulative oil production. Calculations were made for equal amounts of
steam injected into zone thicknesses of 10, 50, and
100 ft located at the top of the interval and also over
the full interval of 173 ft. Spinner surveys have shown
that steam enters at or near the top of the perforated
interval in most cases. The crossflow factors used for
these cases are shown below for Well A.
Average
Crossflop Factor,

Steam Zone
T%icicness
(ft)
10
50
100

5.;
3.1
2.0

Calculations of cumulative production for the 50-ft


steam zone agree well with the fieid data as shown
in Fig. 3. These same cases are shown in Fig. 4 for
no crossflow. The field production is much higher
than that calculated for no crossflow.
- ---Reference to Fig. 3 shows that if cmssfimw U12GIUS,
steam injection into thin zones yields higher longtime cumulative production than equal steam injection into thick zones. This suggests the deslrab@ of
injecting into thin intervals wherever crossflow is
expected. However, in those cases with good crossflow (vertical and horizontal permeabilities approximately equal) the actual confinement of steam to the
interval chosen may be difficult to achieve, since
steam tends to rise to the top of the interval. If crosstlow is not expected, thick-zone injection is preferable,
as can be seen from Fig. 4.
It should be noted that a considerable length of
time is required in this model to resaturate the steam
TABLE

1PROPERTIES

USED

zone with oil for example, 73.7 days for the case
of a 50-ft-thick steam zone in Well A. In our model
a thin steam zone produces less oil on backflow at
any given time, as its own contribution, but the adjoining oil-bearing layers produce more as a result of
greater crossflow. The crossflow factor increases with
the steam-zone radius for a given oil-zone thickness.
And also as the oil-zone thickness adjoining the steam
zone increases, the crossflow factor increases. It does
so at a constant steam-zone radius, up to a certain
value, and then decreases for larger values of oil-zone
thickness. For a given quantity of steam, the use of
a smaller steam-zone thickness results in both a larger
steam-zone radius and a greater oil-zone thickness.
At very small oil-zone thicknesses (about 20 ft) the
effect of crossflow tends to be reduced. This is a result
of a smaIler viscosity contrast across the oil-bearing
interval. The effect of crossflow is reduced also at
small values of steam-zone radius.
Additional results are shown on Figs, 5 and 6 for
Well B. The general agreement between calculated
and observed results for Well B is about the same as
that for Well A. Again, the 5U-ft steam zone gives a
good fit. In this example a reasonable fit to the data
was obtained by adjusting values of the steam-zone
thickness, h,. If tie v-alue of h, prevailing during steam
injection is known, this value should be used in the
computations. There is usually enough uncertainty in
values of permeability and compressibility to permit
some adjustment of these within reasonable limits for
a good fit of theory to the observations.
These calculations emphasize the need for reliable
information on permeabfiity, compressibility, and oil
viscosity at reservoir conditions. For example, use of
a lower oil viscosity at reservoir conditions in the
calculations would yield a higher production curve.
Effect of Location of Steam Zone
Plots of temperature profles for steam-zone thicknesses of 50 ft and zero ft are shown on Fig. 7. Fig. 8
shows, for a 100-ft steam zone, a plot of cumulative
oil production vs time for the individual layers away
from the steam zone, Well A, for a set of constants
slightly dtierent from those in Figs. 3 and 4. In this

IN CALCULATIONS

k. =
c =
T, =

3 darcies
0.0016 psi-
109.4 F
pi =
285 psig
r~=
0.1875 ft
r. = 379 ft
p, C, = 36.8 Btu/(cu ft F)
~, C, = 33.0 Btu/(cu ft F)
K = 25.1 Btu/(ft D F)
@J= 0.36

As. = 0.44
OIL VISCOSITY

Well A

A = 0.037003
B = 2,409.8
c = 100.195

Oil Viscosity at 109.4F


= 3,643 Cp
760

Well B:

A = 0.036302
B = 2,398.0
C = 103.878

Oil Viscosity at 109.4F


= 2,773 Cp

Fig. 3-Cumulative
oil produtilon (for crossflow model)
as a function of time, Well A.

JOURNAL OF PETROLEUM TECHNOLOGY

140,

:1

//

o FIELO OATA

2:k

CALCULATE

~=3 darcies
c = 0.0016 pSi-l

+..,,. 737

100

Fig. Cumulative

oil production

300

400

500

TIME IN DAYS
(for stratified

example a change in well pressure after 63 days of


production was chosen to simulate a lower fluid level
in the well. The same change was made in the calculations for Figs. 9 through 11. Fig. 8 shows that the
oil-bearing layer closest to the steam zone, being
hottest, makes the most sif@cant contribution to the
production. Ilk suggests the desirability of locating
the steam zone somewhere near the middle of the
formation so that oil can be heated by conduction
both above and below the steam zone. Results illustrating the effect of the location of a 50-ft steam zone
are shown on Fig. 9 (with crossflow) and on Fig. 10
(without crossflow). The top of the steam zone is considered to be (1) at the top of the formation, (2) 25 ft
below the top of the formation, and (3) 61.5 ft below
the top (steam zone located in the middle of the interval). The presence of only 25 ft of oil-bearing layer
above the steam zone increases the production 43 percent for the stratified case and 39 percent for the nonstratified case at 400 days.

model)

as a function

of time, Well A.

As mentioned previously, however, for those cases


where crossflow is important, the steam zone will tend
to rise to the top of the formation. In such cases the
injection interval could be located near the bottom
of the formation. In many cases of interest the vertical
permeability is less than the horizontal permeability.
The steam then does not rise so rapidly as expected.
The effect of heating both above and below the steam
zone will still be present. For those cases in which
steam rises rapidly to the top, because of any of
various reasons, the advantage of selective injection
is, of course, much less.
For those cases in which crossflow is not signi!ican~
Figs. 4 and 6 show that for zones located at the top
of the interval, the thicker the steam zone the greater
the production once the steam zone has been resaturated. Since location of a steam zone near the middle
of the formation yields greater production response,
it is of interest to compare production curves for steam
zones of various thicknesses located at the middle of

2,c-

-.

0
0

:-4
Fig. 5-Cumulative

as

oil production (for crossflow model)


a function of time, Well B.

$$,,,
C.

DA,.

LCULA7,

,.:,

dorcl.

Coooes-(

Fig. ~umulative
oil production (for stratified
as a function of time, Well B.

model)
761

JUNE, 1970

50C

500
INJECTION

STEAM

TEMPER

RE =464

PROFILE
STEAM

20

80

400

INJECTION

40C

SOAK

TIME

= 9

DAYS

NuMBERS
ON CURVES
~EFER
To -,. .r
,., ~:y~
llm L !H
AFTER

SOAK

PROFILE
STEAM

PERl OO

400

k 300 -

z
-k

= 464F

AFTER
INJECTION

NOTE:

u
m
2
k
<
u
w
&
z
u

STEAM

TEMPERATURE

ORIGINAL

a
>
m
*

FORMATION

TEMPERATURE=I09.4F

200 -

300

AFTER
INJECTION
NOTE
SOAK

20

=9

OAYS

ON CURVES
REFER
IN DAYS AFTER
SOAK

ORIGINAL

200

TIME

NUMBERS
TO TIME
PERIOD

TEMPER

FORMATION
ATu RE=I094F

20
80
!

,i

I00

~PROFILE

AFTER

100

STEAM

\ PROFILE
INJECTION

INJECTION

AFTER

STEAM

I
(0)STEAM

ZONE

o
olsTANCE

THICKNESS

FROM

=50

MI OPOINT

OF

FEET

I
80

I
100

STEAM

ZONE

I
60

I
40

I
20

Fig. 7Formation

(b)l

IN

FEET

NFINITELY

STEAM

distribution

ZONE

I
40

20

OISTANCE

temperature

THIN

01
o

FROM

60

MI OPOINT

80
OF

STEAM

100
ZONE

IN

FEET

for Well A.

8000

700C

STEAM

ZONE

THICKNESS

STEAM

ZONE

AT

TOP

OF

=100

DISTANCE

FEET

CENTER

FORMATION

LAYER

hO : 2 do fcies
c= OOO15
AS.

(IN

FEET)

OFT

OF OIL-eEARING
BELOW

OF STEAM

BOTTOM

ZONE

h
i

psi-
/

=044

3.65

I00(
/

I00

300

200
TIME

Fig. 8-Cumulative

oilproduction

(for stratified

IN

400

500

DAYS

model)

from individual

layers, Well A.

JOURNAL OF PETROLEUM TECHNOLOGY

tion (computed as volumetric average pressure drop,


Appendix A) for two cases shown in Table 2.
From Table 2, the greatest change from the cases
of a well perforated over the entire oil zone to one
perforated over only the steam zone is a decrease of
3.8 percent. It appears, therefore, that the special
completion techniques mentioned above may not be
necessary for the steam-zone radii and oil-zone thicknesses likely to be encountered. It should generally
suiiice, if vertical permeabiMy is high, to perforate
only over the zone where steam is to be injected. If,
in an actual case, production appears limited, it may
then be desirable to perforate over a wider interval.

the formation (Fig. 11) for the stratified case. The


same total amount of steam is injected in all cases.
For the cases shown, the maximum advantage occurs
for the 100-ft steam zone after about 300 days. It has
produced about 20 percent more oil after 400 days
than the steam zone occupying the full formation
thickness. The 10-ft zone produces more oil initially,
because it heats the oil at greater radial distances in
the reservoir. At longer times, however, the temperature of the 10-ft zone falls faster than the others.
Hence, this thickness tends to become less favorable
at longer times. These results as well as those in Fig.
10 show that the greatest improvement results when
steam zones of moderate thickness are selectively
placed near the middle of the formation rather than
at the top for stratified formations.

Effect of Produced Heat


According to the mathematical model used to describe
the steam-soak process, the effect of heat. lost in the
produced fluids is not included in the calculation. This
heat loss would gradually reduce the production rate
below that calculated. In order to estimate the maximum effect of this heat loss, we have recalculated the
production curve for one case in which the injected
heat of the stratified model is reduced by the amount
of heat that would be produced in our model. This
calculation would then represent too great a correction for heat loss in produced fluids, since our production rates should be high. The curves showing the
production of Well A with and without this reduction
of heat loss are shown in Fig. 12. The difference
between the two curves after 400 diq~s is a%ut 4.??
percent. In view of the uncertainties in such quantities
as permeabdity, compressibility, steam-zone thickness, and in-situ oil viscosity, this difference due to

Effect of Sfze of Interval Open to Production


The foregoing results were obtained with the assumption that oil is allowed to flow into the well throughout
. .
t-h.~~gh
:m+~m,~lmn=n
the helgnt of the oil-bearing ti.-.,..
.,.steam is injected over a limited interval. In the field,
ditliculties might arise in completing a well so as to
allow injection to be selective but production to be
from the entire interval. It is therefore desirable to
compare the foregoing results with some in which
horizontal flow is prevented from the oil layer directly
into the well. This last situation would correspond to
L.hatof ~ we!! whose casing was perforated only over
the interval for steam injec~ion. Modifying the boundary conditions as outlined in Appendix A so that
ap,D/& = O over the height of the oil layer, we obtained results for dimensionless cumulative produc-

180,

I
160
t

.1/7

&..

STEAM

ZONE

FORMATION

THICKNESS

THICKNESS

* 50
* 173

~ **

FEET

JUNE, 1970

FEET

FROM

TOP

..@v

CHANGE

IN PRODUCING WELL PRESSURE


I
200

I 00

I
300
TIME

Fig.Cumulative

, 25

FEET

oilproduction

(for crossflow

IN

AT

63

OAYS
I
:00

OAYS

model) as a function

of time for various positions of steam zone.

763

TABLE 2-COMPARISON

OF CALCULATED

RESULTS

0
\

409
\

AND WITHOUT WELL OPEN OVER ENTIRE


DimensionlessCumulativeProduction

INTERVAL

;OvJ::

Dimensionless
Production
Time,
tm

Time of
ViscosityProfile
After Steam
Inimtinn
.....
. ... .. (Dam)
,--, .,

WITH

St;i:d

crossflow
:--- N----

niff . .. .-a
e,.m,w

lnlU

ilrossfhw into
SteemZone

,,,

iiLWI1l

(percent)

ZoneOnly

104

om358

0.01s4

0.0177

3.8

105

0.0143

0.0583

0.0658

3.7

104

0.0141

0.0434

0.0430

0.9

105

0.0480

0.1145

0.1141

0.3

r.frW= 441.1
r~lh

= 0.001875

STEAM

I 20 -

ZONE

FORMATION

THICKNESS
THICKNESS

x 50
x 173

FEET
FEET

z
n
m
~
z
z
g
~

100

POSITION

80

~
u
>

~
-1
3
x
>
0

40

F~ssRERE

OF

STEAM

ZONE

L:?LROM

~ ,ill

= 186.5

OAYS
>

20

_\/~l
0

TIME

Fig. 10-Cumulative

oil production

(for stratified

IN

10

400

300

200

100

OAYS

model) as a function

of time for various

positions of steam zone.

I 40
FoRMATlo

THIcKNEss

= 175

FEET

120
=
n
.
Q

100

z
STEAM

;
:

ZONE

THICKNESS
/

IN

FEET

100

eo
-

z
g

50
THICK NES!

:
~
2
>
s
>
u

0
40

FSHEP:SSRE

-o(FL

20
y#y

,
I

0
o

I 00

300

200
TIME

Fig. n-Cumulative

764

oil production

IN

400

OAYS

(for stratified model) as a function of time for various


zone located in the middle of the formation.

thicknesses

of steam

JOURNAL OF PETROLEUM TECHNOLOGY

heat loss does not appear excessive. In cases of high


WORs, however, the heat carried off by the water
could be significant.a8

Nomenclature
~: ~

Genera! cQIlclusions
A model has been developed that gives a good description of the steam-soak process in depletion-type
fields. It takes into account in an approximate manner
the effect of crossflow in reservoirs with isotropic permeability. The model may also be applied to stratified
reservoirs. For purposes of calculation it is essential
to know the thickness and vertical position of the
steam zone, as well as the reservoir permeabdity,
compressibility, and oil viscosity.
Important conclusions demonstrated by the model
are as follows:
1. For a steam zone of given size, location of the
zone somewhere near the middle of the formation
..
fin,, ~ the
enhances production of oua I.
Ue.-&
.- oil
--- is heated
both above and below the steam zone. Thk objective
should be more easily attainable in case of limited
vertical permeability.
2. When crossflow is important, confining steam
injection to a thin interval rather than allowing it to
enter the entire interval will give a larger production
response for a given quantity of steam injected, if the
steam remains in a thin zone.
3. When crossflow is not important, thick steam
zones are preferable to thin ones for instances of toplocated steam zones.

STRATIFIED
WELL

h =
,,

h, =
H, =
k=
ko =
K=
N(t) =
Ni(t) =
No(t) =
N,(t) =
P=

compressibility, psi- 1
crossflow factor for cumulative production
height of producing interval, exclusive of
steam zone, ft
steam zone thickness, ft
enthalpy of steam relative to the formation, Btu/lb
permeability, darcies
oil permeability, darcies
thermal conductivity of cap and base
rock, Btu/(ft D F)
total cumulative oil production at time
t, bbl
cumulative production per unit thickness
from the ith layer at time t, bbl
cumulative oil production at time t from
ownrc
- LJ
oii-bearm~
-.., b~]
cumulative production from steam-zone
layer at time t,bbl
pressure, psig

pD = dimensionless pressure drop,

P(

Pf

Pw

jD = volumetric average dimensionless pressure drop


p, = original formation pressure, psig
pm = producing well pressure, psig

MOfJEL
A

TIME,

OAYS

., -mm,. ,

Fig. 12Effect

of produced

heat on cumulative

oil produ&ion.

765

dimensionless pressure drop in Region 1


dimensionless pressure drop in Region 2
PI PW,psi
total heat loss, Btu

Subscripts

Q,., = oil produced by expansion of the cold

References
Qh.=a ~.
.1. .1.,..,

p,.o
p,~
Ap
Q

=
z
=
=

j~~~i, Vd ft

Q~il, = oilc:~me

to resaturate the steam zone,

Q. = dimensionless cumulative production


from uniform reservoir
nz TC= dimensionless cumulative production
from two-region composite reservoir
r = radial variable, ft
r, = outer reservoir boundary radius, ft
rn = r/rW
r8 = steam-zone radius, ft
rm = well radius, ft
reo = dimensionless outer reservoir boundary
radius = r,/r~
rSLI= dimensionless steam-zone radius = r8/r10
tie = change in oil saturation of steam zone
t = time, measured from start of production,
days
td = delay or soak time, days
t,~ = dimensionless time based on Region 2
constants (6.328 kt/@Kicr,c:)
f. = nth value of time after start of production at which production is calculated,
n=0,1,2,
. . .. days
t~ = total time, t + td, days
tfi II = time for oil to resaturate steam zone, days
time
fl~vs
.taom {qi..finn
finj

Ir

T, =
T, =
Ti =
T,, =
~ =
~D =
x~D=
xsII =
z =
ZD=
a! =
y =
p =
Pi =
p. =
~,Cl =
p,C, =
p,i, =
T=
+

-..

3LGU11L

11

J-W..

V..

. . ...-7

equivalent heating time for layers adjacent to steam zone, days


temperature in cooling steam zone, F
temperature in heated regions adjacent to
steam zone, F
original formation temperature, F
injection steam temperature, OF
vertical distance measured from center
of steam zone, ft
h r~
h re/rW
h r,V/rtO
vertical distance measured from base of
steam zone, ft ( = lxI hs/2)
z/h
thermal diffusivity of cap and base rock,
sq ft/D
4. KP,C,/h,.(P,C,), days-/ [(h,(P,C,)21
od viscosity, cp
oil viscosity at original formation temperature, cp
oil viscosity corresponding to t., cp
volumetric heat capacity of steam zone,
Btu/cu ft F
volumetric heat capacity of cap and base
rock, Btu/cu ft F
mass steam injection rate, tons/D
~
porosity
tinj

1 = medium 1, hot
2 = medium 2, cold

B,: SeGQndary Recovery of Oil by Steam Injection in the United States, Proc., Third Symposium

on the Development of Petroleum Resources of Asia


and the Far East, New York (1967 ) IL
2. Bums, James: {A Review of $te~~l Soak @r~&~~~~
in California, J. Pet. Tech. (Jan., 1969) 25-34.
3. Bowman, C. H. and Gilbert, S.: A Successful CYCliC
ct-nm
U.W.....Tni.ction
........... Project

in

the Santa Barbara


Tech. (Dec., 1969)

Field,

15311s39.
4. Adams, R. H. and Khm,, A. M.: Cyclic Steam Injection Performance Analysls and Some Results of a Continuous Steam Displacement Pilot, J. Pet. Tech. (Jan.,
Eastern Venezuel~;, J. Pet.

1969) 95-100.

5. de Haan, H. J. and van Lookeren, J.: Early Results of


the First Large-Scale Steam Soak Project in the Tia
Juana Field, Western Venezuela, J. Pet. Tech. (Jan.,
1969) 101-110.
6. Boberg, T. C. and Lantz, R. B.: Calculation of the
Production Rate of a Thermally Stimulated Well, J.
Pet. Tech. (Dec., 1966) 1613-1623.
7. Davidson, L. B., Miller, F. G. and Mueller, T. D.: A
Mathematical Model of Reservoir Response During the
Cyclic Injection of Steam, SOC. Pet. Eng. J. (June,
1967) 174-188.
8. Martin, John C.: A Theoretical Analysis of Steam
Stimulation, J. Per. Tech. (March, 1967) 411-418.
9. Seba, R. D., Jr., and Perry, G. E.: A Mathematical
Model of Repeated Steam Soaks of Thick Gravity
Drainage Reservoirs, J. Pet, Tech. (Jan., 1969) 87-94.
10. Kuo, C. H., Shain, S. A. and Phocas, D. M.: A Gravity
Drainage Model for the Steam-Soak Process, Sot. Pet.
Eng. J. (June, 1970).
11. Closmann, P. J. and Ratliff, N. W.: Calculation of
Transient Oil Production in a Radial Composite Reservoir, ~OC.Per.Errg:J: (Dec.; 1967) 355-358.
12. van Everdingen, A. F. and Hurst, W.: The Application
of the Laplace Transformation
to Flow Problems in
Reservoirs, Tram., AIME ( 1949) 186, 305-324.
13. Marx, J. W. and Langenheim, R. H.: Reservoir Heati#-b;5Hot
Fluid Injection, Trans., AIME ( 1959) 216,
14. Closmann,

P. J.: Steam Zone Growth During MultipleLayer Steam Injection, Sot. Pet. Eng. J. (March,
1967) 1-10.
15. Carslaw, H. S. and Jaeger, J. C.: Conduction of Heat
2nd cd., Oxford at the Clarendon
Press
in Solids,
(1959) 60.

APPENDIX

Estimation of Crossflow Effects


An estimate of the effects of crossflow can be obtained
by comparing the numerical results of two models
shown in Figs. 13 and 14. In each of these models,
the viscosity of oil in the inner region (radius less
than or equal to steam-zone radius) is assumed to be
a function of vertical distance from the steam zone,
and the viscosity of oil in the outer region is assumed
to be the oil viscosity at reservoir temperature. In the
crossflow model shown in Fig. 13, flow in the vertical
direction is allowed. The boundaries of the steam zone
(z = O, r,. < r < r,) and of the wellbore (r = rW)are
maintained at a constant unit pressure drop. Only
radial flow is permitted in the model without crossflow, with a constant unit pressure drop on the weUbore. A dimensionless cumulative production for each
of these models can be defined as the volumetric aver10T?RN

AT

OF

Pl=TRO1

FIJJ&f

TFf7HNOI.OC,Y

age dimensionless pressure drop. The cumulative


~ro@ow factors can then be obtained as the ratio
of the average pressure drop in the crossflow case to
that without crossflow at any given time.
We shall discuss in some detail the formulation and
numerical solution to the crossflow model, since the
model represented by Fig. 14 may be considered as
a special case of the crossflow model.
Model with Crossflow
Consider the system in Fig. 13 to be composed of two
regions, as follows:
Region 1 the heated region, r,. < r < 83 where
P

onxD=(),oszDsl,t2D>

p,~

0>-

onzD=l,o<xDs%D,t2D

aPID

(A-4)

(A-5)

(A-6)

(A-7)

(A-8)

(A-9)

>0>

(J

azo
onzD=(),()sxDgx8D>r2D

ah

>05

az.

onzD=oj

x$D<xD~xeD,

t2D

>O>.

p(z).

Region 2 the cold region, r, < r < r., where


v = pi.

@2D

In Region 1, we must solve

onzD

(A-1)

.,

where plD may be regarded as the flow potential (or


pressure if gravity is neglected). It is convenient to
make the following substitutions:

azD
=

1,x*D

onxD=xeD,
PID

<XD

xeD,t~D > ~ .

o<zD<l,
=

t2D>

?kD

onxD=x8D,o<zD~l,t2D

>01

(A-n)

and with the initial condition


plil

o
pm

on dl

Eq. A-1 now becomes

,-,r.a,
,,,

~-2xD apl.

~ r,O-

ax,,

&,,

,
___

~(:),p,j,

aih

1
azD

Pi

(A-2)

In Region 2, Eq. A-2 reduces to the normal twodimensional diffusion equation


~_2rD?pm

ax~

r,.

a2p2D

.. _
t?z,;

?P21)

at,,,

(A-3)

Thus, we must solve Eqs. A-2 and A-3 subject to


the boundary conditions
STEAM

ZONE

XD,

zD;

t2D

0.

. . . (A-12)

This problem was solved by use of a combination


implicit-explicit finite difference procedure. Basically,
imp!icit formulation in
the procedure consists fif
-. .an. . ....
the xD direction and an explicit formulation in the ZD
direction.
The pressure drops at an advanced time tD + AtD
are computed in a two-step procedure from those at
In the first step, the finite differa known time level tl,.
ence equations representing Eq. A-2 are solved for
each z~ plane with Eqs. A-4 through A-6 and A-11
Next, the finite difference representation of Eq. A-3
is solved for each zD plane with Eqs. A-7 through
A-10.
After the pressure drop has been computed for all
grid points, the volumetric average pressure drop (a
form of dimensionless cumulative production) is computed by a numerical integration of

BOUNOARY

c-

STEAM

ZONE

BOUNDARY

o~

I
I h):

PRODUCING
INTERVAL
#

v-

:+

(2)

Fig, 13Model

with crossflow.

2D
~:pi

~D

I
1

;$
I

P,o: 1
k

Fig. 14-Model

dptD ~ dpzob
11_
,.
I P(ZO)d,D Hi d,~
IA
1

without crossflow.

767

(A-18)

:D=~

lo
rWz
.

onxD=xeD,

JJ

X.D

PD(XDY

zD)e2Ddx~zD

PID
onxD

..

o<zD<l>f2D>
=

P2D

X8D,

()

<

P2D

ZD

<

l,t2D>0t

A-lg)

(A-13)

PID

The dimensiodess production rate may be obtained


by numerical dtierentiation of the cumulative-vs-time
results.

On~lxD,

zD;

tD=O

(A-20)

q~mrficmlv
----- -, one space dimension appears in Eqs.
A-14 and A-15, the Crank-Nlcolson implicit
pro~a~eo~n~e~=
cedure
W=
used
h
the
soiuUOIi
Of
thk
Model Without Crossflow
tially the same computational scheme at each time
For the case of the model without flow in the vertical
step was employed as for the crossflow model. Eq.
direction, the partial diflerentid equation for Region
A-14 was first solved for a given horizonti plane
1 is
with the first and second boundary conditions. Then
~zp:=
_
u aD,n
[A-1A)
--- -.for each plane with the third
\n-.-r, Eq. A-15 was solved
L-.
.
.
.
.
e-2~D

ax~ pi at2D
and fourth boundary conditions: Finally, Eq. A-13
was solved by numerical integration. The Crossflow
and the equation for Region 2 is
factors calculated in this manner are plotted on Figs.
15 through 17.
e.,zD
32P2D
_
@D
(A-15)
..
.
.
.
.
&
8x*
APPENDIX B
The boundary conditions applicable to this case are
Initial Tempemtire Distribution
pA~= 1

After termination of steam injection, the initial temperature distribution in the medhm adjoining the
steam zone depends upon radkl position. In order
to simplify calculations, we used a dktribution function that represents the same total amount of heat
loss from the steam zone and yet is independent of
radkd position. Such a function may be obtained in
the following mannec
If tilection heat equals 2,000 pSi8HStinj, then totid
heat lo~s ~Uds

(A-16)
onxD=o,o<zD<l?f2D>
1

0?

@lD

.1

@2D

pi

ihD

\
i

IL(ZD)
onxD

8P2D

axD

X8D,0 < ZD <

1, 2D > Y

A-17)

ihD

)2

~,

11

Q = 2000f%i8H,ti.j iTr,2&&(~8

08L

LAYER

,.,c..~=

IN

,00

. . . . . . . . ..-

200

~ET

r, = 12.616

,./,.
.
202

I 3

,s/,

. 441

..

p8i,H,h,plClv(7)
[ (T. 7i) Kp2c2

(B-2)

where

The steam zone radius r, is obtained, for a given


steam-zone t.lickness h. > 0, from Marx and Langenheims formula13 for steam-zone growth:

20

\\

~i)
(B-1)

,\

),

,,,

,..

\t\

:5
1.

o,,.

L,,

E.

T(c NNESS

.----

W,w

z+

IN FEET

!00

.------200

. 202

I 3

<
*,/, W . 2060

%
.
:3
.
s
r,
:2

---- -_tyJJ

---------

g
.

__ -

-------

1.0

-----------

----

~
:,

1-

-l

t
I

1!11!1

0,02

Fig.

..

I , I , II

S,ON LESS

TIME

I,,.

! , I
,o~

,04
.,,

N5-Curnulative

,0,

1,1!11

O,oz

1 111111

II

IILI
w

IO*

lo~
D,.

C.5,01+

LESS

TIME

19,,

crossflow factors for Wells A and B.

Fig. 16-Cumulative

JOURNI+L

crossflow factors for Wells A and B.

OF PETROLEUM

TECHNOLOGY

V(T)=

eefic V~-

where the temperature was assumed to have the onedimensional error function distribution.

1+2

(B-3)
From these equations it is found that

and
7 =y~inj,

...

irc .
,
4cr2

(B4)

with

(B-1O)

where
4K&,
y = ~,z (Plc,)z

(B-5)

(ti.j = steam injection time). In.this calculation i! is


assumed that the thermal properties of the od-beafmg
Iavers adjacent to the steam zone and of the cap and
b~se
rock are equal.
For the case of h. = O, then r, can be obtained
from
?4tinj% .
p,i,H,
r~ = 18.952
1
[ (T, Ti) ~=
. . . . (B-6)
. . . .

= erfc
APPENDIX

z=lx\h*/2

and
B-9)
T,(z) = Ti + (T. Ti) erfc &
4rrr----

(B-n)

1X1

(B-12)

hs/2

c&

After steam injection ceases, the temperature distribution may be represented, for purposes of computation,
by the result of Appendix B. Then> during he ~~1
period and later, the temperature dlstrlbutlon
change with time as heat leaks away from the system.
To represent this changing temperature distribution, the following assumptions are made:
1. Temperature within the resaturating steam zone
remains uniform across the height of the zone but
declines with time.
2. Heat loss occurs in the vertical direction only.
These conditions may be restated as follows:

(B-8)

General Temperature Distr~bution


Subsequent To Steam Injection

(B-7)

where

The initial dimensionless temperature distribution can


then be represented by

Let Q be distributed such tha:


Q = 2p2C,~r,2 ~ [T,(z) Td dz,

Let
h, = steam-zone
T,

thickness,

steam-zone temperature.

If
Iz=t+

td,

32T,
1.?L
axz
~m

()<lx\<*@,

. . . . .
;
~,
:

(c-1)

tT>o;
.

(c-2)

then

~,,,,l,i,,
,,,,,,
,,
T,

()
h,

= T,(t,),

~,tT

O~!x+~t
. .

. . . .

h,?JT, =_K

plcl -=j-~

,,,

,;

(0

Fig. 17-Cumulative

m~o,McN~,

oNLE,,

,,ME

,0

,(20)0

crossflow factors for Wells A and B.

()

T>O
(c-3)

. . .

.
~
&y ICI=+

(c-4)

The solutions for T, and T, were obtained by means


The temperature T,(t) in the
of Laplace transforms.
steam zone is as follows:
769

;(t)_T~{
= @(f+ d) erfc

+ td)

~y(t

;$::,~,(z,+$)e-+(t+td)

+ +1

erfc

2~a,

t(i) dz ,

Vy(t

(t + td)
.

(c-5)

As with the calculations in Appendix B, it is assumed that the thermal properties of the oil-bearing
layers adjacent to the steam zone and of the cap and
base rock are equal.
Since the value of the heat capacity P,CI of the
depleted (but resaturating) zone is changing because
of resaturation with oil, a time average value of plC1
has been used in Eqs. C-5, C-5a, and C-6 above. This
value was computed for each time tas follows.
Before fillup of steam zone,

where

tfill
(plcl)av

4Kp2c,
y = h,z(plcl) o .

t)

Ti

2v.a;t+

(2-2)2

[e

4a2(t+$.i)

2~a*(t

pc

,J(z+
o

dz,

td)

f(z

2+2
[ 2~~,(t + td)
.

plc,. . (C-8)

(plcl)w

P~C~(t

tfi]])

tfill

(plcl)

.
1

(c-9)

If expansion of the cold layer adjoining the steam zone


is insutiicient to resaturate the steam zone, then

e-+l(~+td)

1
+

pLhs

After fillup of steam zone,

+)

z
[

(2+2)2

4a*(t+f,j)

erfc

tfill

T, T,

P2C2

(C-5a)

and f(z + h,/2) is the initial dktribution obtained


from Appendix B.
Temperature T,(z, t) in the adjacent oil-bearing
layers can be obtained from
T,(z,

~y(t

td)

~)

xc,

~y(t+td)

+~y(t
+1
td)

(c-lo)

Q~i,l = oil volume to resatumte the steam zone


= ~(rs rW2)#h,AS~ ,

dz ,

where

2(2 +.2) pzcl

(C-6)

(C-11)

Q,,, = oil produced by expansion of the cold


layer

where z = l-xi h2/z.


For the case h, = O, Eq. C-6 becomes
T,(z,

t)

Ti

T, T,

2~7raz(t

co

(z_z,

td)
Original
manuscript
received in Society of Petroleum
Engineers
office June 30, 1969. Revieed
manuscript
received
Feb. 9, 1970.
Paper (SPE 2516) was presented
at SPE 44th Annual Fall Meeting,
held in Denver,
Colo., Sept.
28-Ott.
L 1969. 0 copyright
1970
American
Intiitute
of Mining,
Metallurgical,
and
petroleum
EnInc.
gineers,

(7+*,)2

)2
_

j(z)

4a2(+
d+

e-

4a2(+
d) dz
1

o
.:.

(c-7)

This paper will


will cover 1970.

be

printed

JOURNAL

in

Transactions

OF PETROLEUM

volume

249,

which

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