Insights From Ion Adsorption and Contact-Angle Alteration at Mineral Surfaces for Low-Salinity Waterflooding

Friedrich Gunther Mugele, Igor Sîretanu, Naveen Kumar, B. Bera, Lei Wang, Riëlle de Ruiter, Armando Maestro, Michael H.G. Duits, Henricus T.M. van den Ende, I Collins

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

19 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Most solid surfaces acquire a finite surface charge after exposure to aqueous environments caused by desorption and/or adsorption of ionic species. The resulting electrostatic forces play a crucial role in many fields of science and technology, including colloidal stability, self-assembly, wetting, and biophysics. Enhanced oil recovery (EOR) is an example of a large-scale industrial process that hinges in many respects on these phenomena. In this paper, we present a series of experiments illustrating fundamental aspects of low-salinity waterflooding in well-defined model systems. We show how pH and ion content of the water phase as well as the presence of model polar components (fatty acids) in the oil phase affect the wettability (i.e., contact-angle distribution) of oil/water/rock systems. Specifically, we discuss high-resolution atomic-force microscopy (AFM) experiments demonstrating the preferential adsorption of multivalent cations to mineral surfaces such as mica and gibbsite. Cation adsorption leads to increased and, in some cases, reversed surface charge at the solid/liquid interface. In particular, the adsorption of divalent cations gives rise to charge reversal and thereby induces a transition from complete water-wetting in the absence to finite contact angles in the presence of such ions. Although already dramatic for pure alkanes as base oil, adding fatty acids to the oil phase enhances the effect of divalent ions on the oil/water/rock wettability even more. In this case, contact-angle variations of more than 70° can be observed as a function of the salt concentration. This enhancement is caused by the deposition of a thin film of fatty acid on the solid surface. AFM as well as surface plasmon-resonance spectroscopy measurement in a microfluidic continuous flow cell directly demonstrate that adsorbed Ca2+ ions promote secondary adsorption of acidic components from the oil phase. The combination of the effects discussed provides a rational scenario explaining many aspects of the success of low-salinity waterflooding.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)38-48
JournalSPE journal
Volume21
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2016

Fingerprint

Well flooding
Contact angle
Minerals
adsorption
Adsorption
salinity
ion
oil
Ions
mineral
Wetting
Fatty acids
fatty acid
atomic force microscopy
cation
wettability
Positive ions
wetting
Surface charge
Water

Keywords

  • METIS-319561
  • IR-102526

Cite this

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title = "Insights From Ion Adsorption and Contact-Angle Alteration at Mineral Surfaces for Low-Salinity Waterflooding",
abstract = "Most solid surfaces acquire a finite surface charge after exposure to aqueous environments caused by desorption and/or adsorption of ionic species. The resulting electrostatic forces play a crucial role in many fields of science and technology, including colloidal stability, self-assembly, wetting, and biophysics. Enhanced oil recovery (EOR) is an example of a large-scale industrial process that hinges in many respects on these phenomena. In this paper, we present a series of experiments illustrating fundamental aspects of low-salinity waterflooding in well-defined model systems. We show how pH and ion content of the water phase as well as the presence of model polar components (fatty acids) in the oil phase affect the wettability (i.e., contact-angle distribution) of oil/water/rock systems. Specifically, we discuss high-resolution atomic-force microscopy (AFM) experiments demonstrating the preferential adsorption of multivalent cations to mineral surfaces such as mica and gibbsite. Cation adsorption leads to increased and, in some cases, reversed surface charge at the solid/liquid interface. In particular, the adsorption of divalent cations gives rise to charge reversal and thereby induces a transition from complete water-wetting in the absence to finite contact angles in the presence of such ions. Although already dramatic for pure alkanes as base oil, adding fatty acids to the oil phase enhances the effect of divalent ions on the oil/water/rock wettability even more. In this case, contact-angle variations of more than 70° can be observed as a function of the salt concentration. This enhancement is caused by the deposition of a thin film of fatty acid on the solid surface. AFM as well as surface plasmon-resonance spectroscopy measurement in a microfluidic continuous flow cell directly demonstrate that adsorbed Ca2+ ions promote secondary adsorption of acidic components from the oil phase. The combination of the effects discussed provides a rational scenario explaining many aspects of the success of low-salinity waterflooding.",
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language = "English",
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Insights From Ion Adsorption and Contact-Angle Alteration at Mineral Surfaces for Low-Salinity Waterflooding. / Mugele, Friedrich Gunther; Sîretanu, Igor; Kumar, Naveen; Bera, B.; Wang, Lei; de Ruiter, Riëlle; Maestro, Armando; Duits, Michael H.G.; van den Ende, Henricus T.M.; Collins, I.

In: SPE journal, Vol. 21, No. 4, 08.2016, p. 38-48.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

TY - JOUR

T1 - Insights From Ion Adsorption and Contact-Angle Alteration at Mineral Surfaces for Low-Salinity Waterflooding

AU - Mugele, Friedrich Gunther

AU - Sîretanu, Igor

AU - Kumar, Naveen

AU - Bera, B.

AU - Wang, Lei

AU - de Ruiter, Riëlle

AU - Maestro, Armando

AU - Duits, Michael H.G.

AU - van den Ende, Henricus T.M.

AU - Collins, I

PY - 2016/8

Y1 - 2016/8

N2 - Most solid surfaces acquire a finite surface charge after exposure to aqueous environments caused by desorption and/or adsorption of ionic species. The resulting electrostatic forces play a crucial role in many fields of science and technology, including colloidal stability, self-assembly, wetting, and biophysics. Enhanced oil recovery (EOR) is an example of a large-scale industrial process that hinges in many respects on these phenomena. In this paper, we present a series of experiments illustrating fundamental aspects of low-salinity waterflooding in well-defined model systems. We show how pH and ion content of the water phase as well as the presence of model polar components (fatty acids) in the oil phase affect the wettability (i.e., contact-angle distribution) of oil/water/rock systems. Specifically, we discuss high-resolution atomic-force microscopy (AFM) experiments demonstrating the preferential adsorption of multivalent cations to mineral surfaces such as mica and gibbsite. Cation adsorption leads to increased and, in some cases, reversed surface charge at the solid/liquid interface. In particular, the adsorption of divalent cations gives rise to charge reversal and thereby induces a transition from complete water-wetting in the absence to finite contact angles in the presence of such ions. Although already dramatic for pure alkanes as base oil, adding fatty acids to the oil phase enhances the effect of divalent ions on the oil/water/rock wettability even more. In this case, contact-angle variations of more than 70° can be observed as a function of the salt concentration. This enhancement is caused by the deposition of a thin film of fatty acid on the solid surface. AFM as well as surface plasmon-resonance spectroscopy measurement in a microfluidic continuous flow cell directly demonstrate that adsorbed Ca2+ ions promote secondary adsorption of acidic components from the oil phase. The combination of the effects discussed provides a rational scenario explaining many aspects of the success of low-salinity waterflooding.

AB - Most solid surfaces acquire a finite surface charge after exposure to aqueous environments caused by desorption and/or adsorption of ionic species. The resulting electrostatic forces play a crucial role in many fields of science and technology, including colloidal stability, self-assembly, wetting, and biophysics. Enhanced oil recovery (EOR) is an example of a large-scale industrial process that hinges in many respects on these phenomena. In this paper, we present a series of experiments illustrating fundamental aspects of low-salinity waterflooding in well-defined model systems. We show how pH and ion content of the water phase as well as the presence of model polar components (fatty acids) in the oil phase affect the wettability (i.e., contact-angle distribution) of oil/water/rock systems. Specifically, we discuss high-resolution atomic-force microscopy (AFM) experiments demonstrating the preferential adsorption of multivalent cations to mineral surfaces such as mica and gibbsite. Cation adsorption leads to increased and, in some cases, reversed surface charge at the solid/liquid interface. In particular, the adsorption of divalent cations gives rise to charge reversal and thereby induces a transition from complete water-wetting in the absence to finite contact angles in the presence of such ions. Although already dramatic for pure alkanes as base oil, adding fatty acids to the oil phase enhances the effect of divalent ions on the oil/water/rock wettability even more. In this case, contact-angle variations of more than 70° can be observed as a function of the salt concentration. This enhancement is caused by the deposition of a thin film of fatty acid on the solid surface. AFM as well as surface plasmon-resonance spectroscopy measurement in a microfluidic continuous flow cell directly demonstrate that adsorbed Ca2+ ions promote secondary adsorption of acidic components from the oil phase. The combination of the effects discussed provides a rational scenario explaining many aspects of the success of low-salinity waterflooding.

KW - METIS-319561

KW - IR-102526

U2 - 10.2118/169143-PA

DO - 10.2118/169143-PA

M3 - Article

VL - 21

SP - 38

EP - 48

JO - SPE journal

JF - SPE journal

SN - 1086-055X

IS - 4

ER -