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Exploration • Drilling • Field Services


Fig. 1. View of the Qarn Alam Heat Recovery Steam Generators (HRSG).


Oman: the last frontier of enhanced oil recovery


Vinod Shah reports on the challenges (now and in the future) facing the oil and gas industry regions around the world showing growth in production and highlights technology innovations to improve/support production and safety.


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ince the first oil was discovered in 1964 at Fahud, Oman has been heavily developing its oil and gas industry, which today accounts for 80 per cent of export revenues and 40 per cent of gross domestic


product. However, Oman oil is highly viscous and only a fraction of the oil contained in its reserves is recoverable using traditional production methods. Over the past decade, Oman has been working


hard to improve the recovery of its oil reserves and has adopted enhanced oil recovery (EOR) techniques on a large scale. As a result the Sultanate has been able to increase oil production to nearly 1 million barrels per day (bpd) from a low of 714 300


22 www.engineerlive.com


bpd averaged in 2008. Tis has also changed the outlook for its oil industry which is now estimated to have at least 40 years of life ahead of it.


What is EOR?


EOR is a term that describes a range of techniques used to increase the amount of crude oil that can be extracted from an oil field. By using EOR 30 to 60 per cent, or more in some cases, of the reservoir’s original oil can be extracted compared to 5 to 20 per cent attainable using primary and secondary recovery techniques. It is estimated that the world average oil recovery factor is only around 35-37 per cent, which means that the remaining


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