Chennai (Tamil Nadu): Researchers at Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Madras here are developing indigenous processes for efficient recovery of oil from mature offshore wells.
In collaboration with research laboratories in Australia, IIT Madras researchers are studying the efficacy of an emerging enhanced oil recovery method called ‘Low-Salinity Enhanced Oil Recovery’ (LSEOR).
“Our research aims to develop indigenous methods for the recovery of crude oil from geological reservoirs, which is a complex process. There is still much that needs to be understood in the use of LSEOR methods. We do evaluate salt levels in the water, the acidity of the crude oil, mineralogy of the rock and other factors,” Dr Jitendra Sangwai, Professor (Petroleum Engineering), Department of Ocean Engineering, IIT Madras, who is heading the research told ANI here.
“Oil is extracted from offshore reservoirs through the water injection process, a secondary oil recovery method, in which, sea water is injected into the oil-bearing porous rocks, typically limestone and sandstone under the sea, and the water pushes the oil out. The efficiency of the process depends upon the wettability of the oil-bearing rock. Although limestone and sandstone are water wettable rocks by nature, they can become hydrophobic or water repellent due to their oil content,” he added.