Microwave-Assisted Heavy Oil Production: An Experimental Approach

Hascakir B., Acar C., AKIN S.

ENERGY & FUELS, vol.23, no.12, pp.6033-6039, 2009 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 23 Issue: 12
  • Publication Date: 2009
  • Doi Number: 10.1021/ef9007517
  • Journal Name: ENERGY & FUELS
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.6033-6039
  • Middle East Technical University Affiliated: Yes


Conventional enhanced oil recovery (EOR) methods, Such as steam injection, are Usually not cost-effective for deep wells and wells produced from thin pay zones, because of excessive heat loss to the overburden. For such wells, minimizing heat losses can be achieved using microwave heating. In this study, the feasibility of this method was investigated. Heavy oil samples from conceptual reservoirs (Bati Raman, 9.5 degrees API; Garzan, 12 degrees API; and Camurlu, 18 degrees API) southeast Turkey were used. Using a novel graphite core holder packed with crushed limestone premixed with crude oil and water, effects of operational parameters, such as heating time and waiting period, as well as rock and fluid properties, such as porosity, permeability, wettability, salinity, and initial water saturation, were studied. It was found that high-salinity water promotes oil production during microwave-assisted production. High water saturations lead to higher oil productions regardless of the viscosity of the oil. It was finally concluded that microwave heating could be used to stimulate heavy oil production.