Binary mixture technology can be used as an alternative to conventional steam and / or carbon dioxide stimulations of fields for secondary and tertiary recovery. In addition, the same well spacing can be used, so that the binary mixture technology can be applied to a field that has already been prepared for one of the conventional EOR treatments.
Critical factors to determine the economies using a BM treatment include water content of wells and maximum pressure the reservoir is rated for. Typically the lower the water content and the higher the admitted pressure, the better the economies.
BM technology can be used as an alternative to SAGD and / or traditional steam injections. The technology can be applied to medium oil and heavy crude. No tests have performed so far on extra heavy oil (API gravity of 10 or less) but limited scale tests are planned for 2014.
The BM technology has the big advantage over steam in that all components are injected in the formation in liquid form. The associated hydrostatic pressure helps to overcome the pressure of the field and medium powered pumps are sufficient. Deep wells pose an additional challenge to steam treatment, as much of the energy is lost on the way to the formation. The BM technology mixes the components only in the well and hence there is no energy loss as a result of increased depth.