A High-Pressure Plane-Strain Testing System to Evaluate Microbially Induced Calcite Precipitation as a Sand Production Control Method
Sand production is the phenomenon that solid particles (sand in many cases) from an oil/gas reservoir move into a production well along with oil/gas and water flows. Sand production in weakly consolidated sand reservoirs is a growing concern in petroleum industry. In this study, a high-pressure plane-strain sand production testing system was designed, which was able to simulate the stress and flow conditions in the field. This testing device was used to evaluate the effectiveness of microbially induced calcite precipitation (MICP) as a sand production control method. The erosion rate and hydraulic gradient were measured for both Non-MICP and MICP treated specimens, with results verified by visual observations. It is found that the MICP method was able to substantially reduce sand production rate. In the current experimental set-up, the enlargement of upstream cavity created by sand production was delayed by the MICP treatment. The spatial and temporal variations in hydraulic gradient during sand production experiment were evaluated and the results are discussed.
KeywordsBio-cementation Sand production Testing device