History matching of electromagnetically heated reservoirs incorporating full-wavefield seismic and EM imaging

by K. Katterbauer, I. Hoteit, S. Sun
Year:2015 ISSN: 1086055X


History matching of electromagnetically heated reservoirs incorporating full-wavefield seismic and EM imaging
K. Katterbauer, I. Hoteit, and S. Sun
Society of Petroleum Engineering (SPE) Journal, 20(5), 923-941, 2015


​Electromagnetic (EM) heating is becoming a popular method for heavy-oil recovery because of its cost-efficiency and continuous technological improvements. It exploits the relationship that the viscosity of hydrocarbons decreases for increasing temperature; the heavy-oil components become more fluid-like, and hence easier to extract from the reservoir. Although several field studies have considered the effects of heating on the viscosity of the hydrocarbons, there has been very little research on the long-term effects of field production and the forecasting of the development of the reservoir. Increased flow rates within the reservoir render the moving fluids less viscous, implying fast-changing fluid-propagation patterns and increased uncertainty about the state of the oil displacement. This means, in the long term, strongly varying production projections, strong dependence on the permeability of the reservoir, and potentially undesirable fluid migration. To improve the forecasting of production in heavy-oil fields and to accurately capture the dynamics of the fluid movements, we present a history-matching framework incorporating well data and seismic and EM crosswell-imaging techniques. The incorporation of seismic and EM data into the history-matching process counteracts the changing reservoir dynamics caused by increased fluid velocity caused by heating and is shown to significantly improve reservoir matching and forecasts for a variety of different heating scenarios.


Heavy Oil Recovery Increasing Temperatures Long-term Effects Propagation Pattern Reservoir Dynamics Strong Dependences Technological Improvements

"KAUST shall be a beacon for peace, hope and reconciliation, and shall serve the people of the Kingdom and the world."

King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, 1924 – 2015

Contact Us

  • 4700 King Abdullah University of Science and Technology

    Thuwal 23955-6900, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

    Al-Khwarizmi Building (1)

© King Abdullah University of Science and Technology. All rights reserved