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CO2 EOR: Nanotechnology for Mobility Control Studied Sinisha (Jay) Jikich, National Energy Technology Laboratory, US Department of Energy Most domestic conventional oil resources have been produced using primary and secondary recovery techniques, with an average recovery factor estimated at 35%. Additional recovery is possible by using innovative enhanced oil recovery (EOR) techniques. One of these, carbon dioxide
(CO2) miscible flooding, is the fastest growing EOR technique in the United States because of the many reservoirs amenable to the process. Current production is almost 310,000 B/D (EOR Survey, Oil and Gas Journal, April 2012), representing approximately 5% of total US oil output. A revised national resource assessment for CO2 EOR conducted by the National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) of the United States Department
of Energy (DOE) in 2011 indicated that “next generation” CO2 EOR can provide 137 billion bbl of additional, technically recoverable domestic oil, with about half (67 billion bbl) economically recoverable at an oil price of USD 85 per bbl. CO2 EOR has the benefit of sequestering CO2 in oil producing formations and is seen as a critical component of future greenhouse gas management programs. This facet of CO2 EOR produces valuable synergies
with the carbon capture, utilization, and storage research program with the DOE’s Office of Fossil Energy.