Numerical Simulation by STARS (CMG) using Surfactants for Enhanced Oil Recovery in a Reservoir


  • Marllelis Gutierrez
  • Johanna Benavides
  • Evelyn Morales
  • Sadi Iturralde



Enhanced oil recovery, STARS (CMG) software, Reservoir simulation and modeling, Surfactant injection.


In Ecuador, heavy crude oil represents 20% of the proven reserves at the national level. However, producing them has been challenging because of their low recovery factor due to their characteristics, high oil viscosities, and low mobility, among others. This makes developing and implementing improved or tertiary recovery methods and technologies necessary; therefore, the aim is to produce the maximum available resources in an environmentally friendly way. New advances in hydrocarbon extraction technologies in recent years have been tested and one of them, on which this research focuses, is using chemical methods in which solvents are injected to modify viscosity in aqueous solutions. Thus, displacing the oil generates very low interfacial tensions between the crude oil and water by adsorption in the liquid-liquid phase. Therefore, the selection of a reservoir that meets the required characteristics for the respective application of this method was carried out. Furthermore, increasing the sweep efficiency will optimize the mobility of the oil bank toward the producing wells, thus improving the recovery factor. Consequently, upon running the simulation, the results show that continuous surfactant flooding resulted in 84.5% recovery, SP flooding 89.4%, and ASP flooding with the highest recovery factor of 90.13%. This is due to the synergistic contribution of the IFT reduction using surfactant and the mobility ratio per polymer reduction, thus improving the overall sweep efficiency by a better margin. At the same time, alkali is responsible for decreasing the amount of the active surfactant used as it is a lower-cost agent [1].



2022-11-07 — Updated on 2022-11-14


How to Cite

Marllelis Gutierrez, Johanna Benavides, Evelyn Morales, & Sadi Iturralde. (2022). Numerical Simulation by STARS (CMG) using Surfactants for Enhanced Oil Recovery in a Reservoir. Journal of Pharmaceutical Negative Results, 10–34. (Original work published November 7, 2022)