A Numerical Approach for Oil Slug Mobilization in a Capillary Tube Under Absence and Presence of External Excitations
Joshi, Harsh Dipak
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This research attempts to study the mobilization of an oil drop, also known as a \slug", via the aid of a water film. This differs from other work in this area wherein the oil drop is forced through the throat of a pore using external excitations. In the first simulation, an oil drop is placed in a small diameter tube filled with water and then flushed from the tube by injecting more water. The pressure difference between the inlet and outlet of the tube is then recorded. Unlike past research in this field, this work employs dimensionless numbers and sensitivity analysis to more accurately analyze the effects of different parameters on the pressure drop. The model in this thesis also likely represents a novel simulation in which vibrations are used to aid in the formation of the water film. Tests, that use these vibratory excitations, are carried out as part of a second series of simulations, in order to study and visualize how vibrations help in the movement of an oil slug. The results show that different vibrations produce varying results. An interesting relationship between pressure drop and the various types of vibrations, as well as water film length and pressure drop, has been found. Visual evidence of the formation of a water film due to vibrations is presented. All numerical simulations are verified using core-annular ow. The results of this research contribute to ideas already available in the field of enhanced oil recovery practice using vibro-seismic techniques. Ultimately, this work could lead to improved oil recovery methods.