Reservoir rock simulation for petroleum research

Petroleum or crude oil exists underground in the form of tiny droplets trapped inside the pores of an oil reservoir. It serves as a major energy source and can also be used in the making of fuel, heating oil, asphalt, petrochemical feedstocks and many more. The sub-surface hydrocarbons are extracted from the underground porous rocks. The extraction efficiency is affected by factors such as low porosity and low permeability of reservoir rocks. These can impede the flow of the product into the well which results in less amount of oil extracted from the reservoir. These issues are common and have led to a majority of oil companies focussing on maximising the recovery factor to maintain an economic and sustainable oil price. In addition, there is also a possibility of incurring additional cost as petroleum exploration and research is deemed as quite expensive in terms of labor, equipment, leases, drilling and other considerable costs that may be incurred during the period of extraction. There is a pressing need to develop a methodological, cost effective and efficient approach for extracting oil from the reservoir. The extraction of petroleum from an oil field demands extensive research, theoretical efforts and time. Several secondary oil recovery methods are employed to supply the enormous demands of crude oil with optimum expenditure. These methods have been well-researched and tested on a micro level before they are finally executed in the main oil field. One of the essential equipment used in the research process is a pressure sensor that measures the pressure drop across a network designed to simulate the actual mechanism of extracting the oil from rock reservoirs.

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