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An Overview of Alberta Oil Sands

and Recovery Technologies


XVIII Latin American Petroleum Show
Maracaibo, Venezuela
June 11-14, 2007

Eugene Dembicki
Director, Canadian Heavy Oil Association
Manager, Suncor Energy Inc.
www.choa.ab.ca

Canadian Heavy Oil Association

Introduction

Oil Resources
Global
Canadian

Heavy Oil Properties


Geology of the Athabasca Oil Sands Deposit
McMurray Formation - largest oil resource in Canada

Recovery Methods
Surface Mining

Truck & Shovel

In-situ

CHOP (Cold Heavy Oil Production)


CHOPS (Cold Heavy Oil Production with Sand)
CSS (Cyclic Steam Stimulation)
SAGD (Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage)
VAPEX (Vapor Extraction)
THAI (Toe-to-Heel Air Injection)

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Resources

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Resources

Saudi
Arabia
Canada

Iraq
Iran
Kuwait

Abu
Dhabi
Venezuela
Russia
Libya

Nigeria
USA

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Production

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Production

60% production
from mining
(121,000 m3/day;
760,000 bpd)
40% production
from in-situ
(78,500 m3/day;
490,000 bpd)

Source: AEUB

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Production

Source: AEUB

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Heavy Oil Properties

Athabasca Oil Sands

Thick, sticky mixture of sand,


water, and bitumen
About 7 degrees API

Immobile at reservoir
conditions (8-9 deg. C)
Unconsolidated very porous
& permeable
Exploited by mining & in-situ
techniques

Photo courtesy of Suncor Energy Inc.

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Heavy Oil Properties


Bitumen Viscosity
heat or diluent will reduce viscosity

10C

90C

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Heavy Oil Properties


Location
Oil sands production now
exceeds one million barrels per
day.
Forecast 4.5 million bpd by
2015

$45 billion spent from 19962005.


$60 billion in new oil sands
projects expected between
2006 & 2010.
Exploited by mining & in-situ
techniques

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Heavy Oil Properties


Alberta Bitumen Volumes in billion m3
(AEUB, June 2004)
Category

Mineable

In Situ

Total

Initial volume in place

18.0

240.9

258.90

Initial established

5.59

22.80

28.39

Initial established under


development

1.74

0.65

2.39

Cumulative production

0.46

0.21

0.67

Remaining established

5.13

22.60

27.73

Remaining established under


development

1.28

0.44

1.72

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Heavy Oil Properties


Challenge
Bitumen

Synthetic Crude Oil

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Geology

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Geology
Athabasca Oil Sands
McMurray Formation - Athabasca River

Photo courtesy of Suncor Energy Inc.

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Geology
Athabasca Oil Sands
McMurray Formation - Shale Plug

Next Slide

Photo courtesy of Suncor Energy Inc.

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Geology
Athabasca Oil Sands
McMurray Formation - Shale Plug

Shale Plug (Non-Reservoir)

Rich Oil Sand

Channel Margin (Interbedded/Mixed Oil Sand)


Photo courtesy of Suncor Energy Inc.

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Geology
McMurray Fm. Depositional
Model

Overbank: Non-reservoir

Pond Mud

Crevasse Splay

Photo courtesy of Suncor Energy Inc.

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Geology
McMurray Fm. Depositional
Model
Bank Collapse - breccia

Channel Oil Sand

Photo courtesy of Suncor Energy Inc.

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Geology
McMurray Fm. Depositional
Model
Marine mud - Non reservoir

Tidal Flat Non reservoir

Photo courtesy of Suncor Energy Inc.

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Surface Mining
Athabasca Oil Sands Deposit
McMurray Formation

Source: AEUB

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Surface Mining

10% of the Athabasca


Deposit is mineable
18 billion m3 in place
0.46 billion m3
produced
3 mines in operation
Syncrude, Suncor,
Shell
121,000 m3/day
760,000 bpd
Photo courtesy of Nexen Inc.

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Surface Mining
Athabasca Oil Sands Deposit
McMurray Formation

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Surface Mining
Truck & Shovel
400 ton truck = 100 barrels of bitumen

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Surface Mining
Oil Sands Truck & Operator

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Surface Mining

Company

Project

Albian/Shell
Suncor
Syncrude
CNRL
Imperial
PetroCan

Muskeg/Jackpine
Base Plant
Base Plant
Horizon
Kearl Like
Fort Hills

Size (bpd)

On
Production

160,000
260,000
300,000
110,000
100,000
50,000

now
now
now
2008
2010
2011

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In-Situ
In-Situ Recovery Methods
Cyclical Steam Stimulation

Cold HO Production (CHOP)

Primary
Conventional
Horwells & Multilaterals

Waterfloods

Conventional CSS

CSS with non-conventional


wells (Multi-laterals & U)

CSS with solvent

Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage


(SAGD)

High WOR Operations

Conventional
Horwells & Multilaterals

Solvent Flooding

Immobile Bitumen

Excellent pay zones

Solvent AGD (VAPEX Nsolv)

CHOPS

Primary with Sand Production

Infill drilling for by-passed oil

Post CHOPS EOR

In-situ Combustion

Conventional (Shut-down)

Toe to Heel Air Injection (THAI)


Pilot

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In-Situ
Cold Heavy Oil Production (CHOP)
Rod Pumps & Sand Control
Technology

Slow rod fall rates


Long stoke units
Low pump rates
Gas locking problems
Problems with sand
Wear of pump
Stuck pumps
Stuck tubing
Fill in casing
Low rates; rapid declines; & high
water-cuts

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In-Situ
Cold Heavy Oil Production with Sand (CHOPS)

ALBERTA
ATHABASCA

Typical Cold Production History

PEACE
RIVER

WABASCA

Edmonton
COLD LAKE
LLOYDMINSTER
100 mile
125 km

Calgary
Canada
U.S.A.

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In-Situ
Cold Heavy Oil Production with Sand (CHOPS)

Depth ~400-600 m
Thickness 2-7 m

High Permeability Channels Developed wormholes


much greater reservoir contact
Large Local Drawdown at End of Channels
high pressure gradients which moves the sand
5-20% sand production
Substantial Increase in Oil rates (10X)
Successful Commercial Process

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In-Situ
Cold Heavy Oil Production with Sand (CHOPS)
Progressive Cavity Pump (PCP) or Screw
Tech. transfer from mining &
food processing in 80s
Rotate rods to drive
downhole pump.
Molded rubber stator &
spiral stainless steel rotor.
Capable of pumping a slurry
& handling sand.
Wells that produced sand
had better oil rates &
recoveries.

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In-Situ
Cold Lake Oil Sands Deposit
Clearwater Formation (CSS, SAGD)
ALBERTA
ATHABASCA
PEACE
RIVER

WABASCA

Edmonton
COLD LAKE
LLOYDMINSTER
100 mile
125 km

Calgary
Canada
U.S.A.

Source: AEUB

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In-Situ
Cyclic Steam Stimulation (CSS)
CSS Well established & most
universally applicable EOR
process

California

Venezuela

Indonesia

China

Canada

Inject: 14 60 days
Soak: 1- 7 days

Prod: 90 180 days


Requires some oil mobility
(20,000 to 500,000 cp)

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In-Situ
Cyclic Steam Stimulation (CSS)

Imperial Oil Cold Lake Project Production

ALBERTA
ATHABASCA
PEACE
RIVER

WABASCA

Edmonton
COLD LAKE
LLOYDMINSTER
100 mile
125 km

Calgary
Canada
U.S.A.

Canadian Heavy Oil Association

In-Situ
Peace River Oil Sands Deposit
Bluesky Formation (CSS, SAGD, CHOP)
ALBERTA
ATHABASCA
PEACE
RIVER

WABASCA

Edmonton
COLD LAKE
LLOYDMINSTER
100 mile
125 km

Calgary
Canada
U.S.A.

Canadian Heavy Oil Association

In-Situ
Cyclic Steam Stimulation (CSS)

ALBERTA
ATHABASCA
PEACE
RIVER

WABASCA

Edmonton
COLD LAKE
LLOYDMINSTER
100 mile
125 km

Calgary
Canada
U.S.A.

Canadian Heavy Oil Association

In-Situ
Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage (SAGD)

AOSTRA Dover UTF Project

ALBERTA
ATHABASCA
PEACE
RIVER

WABASCA

Edmonton

1st SAGD Wells in Canada (1997)

COLD LAKE
LLOYDMINSTER
100 mile
125 km

Calgary
Canada
U.S.A.

3 well pairs 60 m

Drill horizontal wells into the oil from


tunnels in the limestone below the
oil sand

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In-Situ
Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage (SAGD)

Horizontal length: 750 1200 m

Rate: 100 400 m3/day (700 2500 bpd)

Vertical separation: 5 6 m

Steam Oil Ratio: 2 4

TVD: 90 400 m

Current Production: 20,000 m3/day (125,000 bpd)

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In-Situ
Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage (SAGD)
Example of SAGD Pads

Photo courtesy of Suncor Energy Inc.

Canadian Heavy Oil Association

In-Situ
Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage (SAGD)
SAGD Well Pad

Photo courtesy of Suncor Energy Inc.

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In-Situ
Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage (SAGD)
SAGD Well Pad Slant Wellheads

Photo Courtesy of Nexen from Long Lake

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In-Situ
Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage (SAGD)
Alberta Projects
Company

Project

Size (mbopd)

On Production

ConocoPhillips
Total
Devon
Encana
Encana
Husky
Husky
JACOS
MEG Energy
North American
Petro Canada
OPTI/Nexen
Suncor

Surmont
Joslyn
Jackfish
Christina Lake
Foster Creek
Sunrise
Tucker Lake
Hangingstone
Christina Lake
Kai Kos Dehseh
MacKay River
Long Lake
Firebag I &2

100
45
35
18
40 - 60
50 - 200
30
10
25
10
30 - 74
72
70

2006-2012
2010
2008
2008
now
2008 2006
now
2008
2008
now - 2010
2007
now

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In-Situ
Vapor Extraction Process (VAPEX)
Large scale lab &
field pilots are underway.
Results are
generally classified as
confidential

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In-Situ
Toe to Heel Air Injection (THAI)
Petrobank Whitesands Project
3 well pilot
started mid-2006
> 160 m3/day
>1000 bpd

Photo Courtesy of Petrobank

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Bitumen Recovery Summary


Grade

API
Gravity

18 25

2)
7 20

7 12

<4

Viscosity
(CP)

Production
Method

Recovery
Percent

1)
Transportation

10 100

4) Cold
Production

5 10

Flows

100 104

Cold
Production

38

Diluent may
be needed

> 104

(1) CSS
Huff / Puff

15 20

Diluent

(2) SAGD

40 80

Diluent

Mining

3)
80 90

N/A

> 104

1) Lower gravity equates to higher cost of diluent. Cost of this step can be up to $4/bbl.
2) The lower gravity range is cold producible only when thermal gradients are high, as in the
Orinoco.
3) Recoveries are high but only about 10% of the reserves are accessible to normal mining.
4) In rare instances steam sweeps are used simply to increase recoveries to the 60% level.

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Supply Costs

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Conclusion

Alberta Heavy Oil Industry


Large Resource

Production is Increasing
Mining
In-situ (CSS & SAGD)

Modern Technology & Research


Service & Suppliers
www.eub.ca/docs/products/STs/st98_2007.pdf

www.choa.ab.ca

Canadian Heavy Oil Association

Gracias!

Questions?

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