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Bench-scale simulation of quenching and stabilization of MIS retorts

Description: This research was conducted to evaluate in situ retort stabilization methods. The objective of the bench-scale simulations was to evaluate possible post-retorting operating procedures for the optimum cleaning of spent retorts. After simulating conditions of modified in situ (MIS) retorts at the time retorting had ended, procedures to accelerate retort cleanup without using large volumes of water were investigated. Samples from various levels of the retort were used to determine the amount of water-soluble constituents in the spent shale and the rehydration characteristics of the spent shale.
Date: June 1, 1992
Creator: Barbour, F. A. & Boysen, J. E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The extraction of bitumen from western oil sands: Volume 2. Final report

Description: The program is composed of 20 projects, of which 17 are laboratory bench or laboratory pilot scale processes or computer process simulations that are performed in existing facilities on the University of Utah campus in north-east Salt Lake City. These tasks are: (1) coupled fluidized-bed bitumen recovery and coked sand combustion; (2) water-based recovery of bitumen; (3) oil sand pyrolysis in a continuous rotary kiln reactor; (4) oil sand pyrolysis in a large diameter fluidized bed reactor; (5) oil sand pyrolysis in a small diameter fluidized bed reactor; (6) combustion of spent sand in a transport reactor; (7) recovery and upgrading of oil sand bitumen using solvent extraction methods; (8) fixed-bed hydrotreating of Uinta Basin bitumens and bitumen-derived hydrocarbon liquids; (9) ebullieted bed hydrotreating of bitumen and bitumen derived liquids; (10) bitumen upgrading by hydropyrolysis; (11) evaluation of Utah`s major oil sand deposits for the production of asphalt, high-energy jet fuels and other specialty products; (12) characterization of the bitumens and reservoir rocks from the Uinta Basin oil sand deposits; (13) bitumen upgrading pilot plant recommendations; (14) liquid-solid separation and fine tailings thickening; (15) in-situ production of heavy oil from Uinta Basin oil sand deposits; (16) oil sand research and development group analytical facility; and (17) process economics. This volume contains reports on nine of these projects, references, and a bibliography. 351 refs., 192 figs., 65 tabs.
Date: November 26, 1997
Creator: Oblad, A.G.; Dahlstrom, D.A.; Deo, M.D.; Fletcher, J.V.; Hanson, F.V.; Miller, J.D. et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Initial evaluation of fracturing oil shale with propellants for in situ retorting, Phase 2

Description: A series of field experiments was carried out to gather preliminary information on the use of propellant charges to create horizontal fractures in oil shale beds for in situ retorting. Development of a propellant tool specifically designed to create horizontal fractures, and testing of various sizes and designs of the tool to create fractures in oil shale beds were carried out simultaneously. Ten prototype tools with energy yields from 2 pounds to 60 pounds were fired at depths ranging from 10 feet to 60 feet. Ten preshot observation holes and 13 postshot core holes were used to gather information and to serve as injection wells to inject air into the formation for permeability tests. Most shots vented large volumes of gas or water from observation holes 13 to 20 feet distant, indicating that a horizontal fracture communicating from the shot point to the observation hole had been created. Shot-related horizontal fracturing was noted in most core holes at the same depth as the shot point. Air injection tests on all holes showed a significant increase in permeability after the shots.
Date: May 1, 1991
Creator: Lekas, M. A.; Lekas, J. M. & Strickland, F. G.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Bench-scale simulation of quenching and stabilization of MIS retorts

Description: This research was conducted to evaluate in situ retort stabilization methods. The objective of the bench-scale simulations was to evaluate possible post-retorting operating procedures for the optimum cleaning of spent retorts. After simulating conditions of modified in situ (MIS) retorts at the time retorting had ended, procedures to accelerate retort cleanup without using large volumes of water were investigated. Samples from various levels of the retort were used to determine the amount of water-soluble constituents in the spent shale and the rehydration characteristics of the spent shale.
Date: January 1, 1992
Creator: Barbour, F.A. (Western Research Inst., Laramie, WY (United States)) & Boysen, J.E. (Resource Technology Corp., Inc., Laramie, WY (United States))
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Quenching and stabilization of MIS retorts: Bench-scale experiments

Description: This research was conducted to evaluate in situ retort stabilization methods. The objective of the bench-scale simulations was to evaluate possible post-retorting operations procedures for the optimum cleaning of spent retorts. After simulating conditions of modified in situ (MIS) retorts at the time retorting had ended, procedures to accelerate retort cleanup without using large volumes of water were investigated. Samples from various levels of the retort were used to determine the amount of water-soluble constituents in the spent shale and the rehydration characteristics of the spent shale. The organic material that remained after retorting was most effectively removed from the retort by the use of reverse combustion. The removal of the organic material in this manner cracked the oil on the unretorted shale and removed heat from the bottom of the retort. Both were then transported toward the top of the retort. Unretorted kerogen was coked as it emerged from the shale near the reverse-combustion front. The reverse-combustion technique had an additional benefit in that the carbon deposited on the spent shale in the combusted zone appeared to provide a barrier to rehydration of the shale on introduction of water into the retorts. A hot quench immediately following retorting was also relatively effective in removing organic material from the retort. However, the quench did leave some organic material on the unretorted shale. This material was not readily removed by water leaching during laboratory testing. A deluge of water on a cool retort did not efficiently remove the organic material from the unretorted shale nor did the addition of a biodegradable detergent.
Date: April 1, 1991
Creator: Barbour, F. A. & Boysen, J. E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Chemically assisted in situ recovery of oil shale

Description: The purpose of the research project was to investigate the feasibility of the chemically assisted in situ retort method for recovering shale oil from Colorado oil shale. The chemically assisted in situ procedure uses hydrogen chloride (HCl), steam (H{sub 2}O), and carbon dioxide (CO{sub 2}) at moderate pressure to recovery shale oil from Colorado oil shale at temperatures substantially lower than those required for the thermal decomposition of kerogen. The process had been previously examined under static, reaction-equilibrium conditions, and had been shown to achieve significant shale oil recoveries from powdered oil shale. The purpose of this research project was to determine if these results were applicable to a dynamic experiment, and achieve penetration into and recovery of shale oil from solid oil shale. Much was learned about how to perform these experiments. Corrosion, chemical stability, and temperature stability problems were discovered and overcome. Engineering and design problems were discovered and overcome. High recovery (90% of estimated Fischer Assay) was observed in one experiment. Significant recovery (30% of estimated Fischer Assay) was also observed in another experiment. Minor amounts of freed organics were observed in two more experiments. Penetration and breakthrough of solid cores was observed in six experiments.
Date: December 31, 1993
Creator: Ramierz, W. F.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Comparison of the Acceptability of Various Oil Shale Processes

Description: While oil shale has the potential to provide a substantial fraction of our nation's liquid fuels for many decades, cost and environmental acceptability are significant issues to be addressed. Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) examined a variety of oil shale processes between the mid 1960s and the mid 1990s, starting with retorting of rubble chimneys created from nuclear explosions [1] and ending with in-situ retorting of deep, large volumes of oil shale [2]. In between, it examined modified-in-situ combustion retorting of rubble blocks created by conventional mining and blasting [3,4], in-situ retorting by radio-frequency energy [5], aboveground combustion retorting [6], and aboveground processing by hot-solids recycle (HRS) [7,8]. This paper reviews various types of processes in both generic and specific forms and outlines some of the tradeoffs for large-scale development activities. Particular attention is given to hot-recycled-solids processes that maximize yield and minimize oil shale residence time during processing and true in-situ processes that generate oil over several years that is more similar to natural petroleum.
Date: March 11, 2006
Creator: Burnham, A K & McConaghy, J R
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Instrumentation and operational plan for geokinetics retort No. 22

Description: This report outlines the general plan for the instrumentation and technical direction of a horizontal in siti retorting experiment to be conducted at the Geokinetics, Inc. field site in Uintah County, Utah. Bed preparation has been accomplished by Geokinetics by blasting the retort zone with explosives emplaced in wells drilled from the surface. Downhole instrumentation will consist of approx. 300 thermocouples and 28 combustion gas sampling ports to monitor the movement of the reaction front during the retorting process. Surface instrumentation will provide measurements of flow rates, gas composition, liquid products and other process parameters to monitor the overall operation of the process. The operational plan includes provision for data interpretation and real time material balance calculations in the field, including an evaluation of the effect on processing rates and oil yield due to the use of recycled combusted off gases and changes in rate of injection of inlet gases.
Date: April 1, 1980
Creator: Parrish, R.L. & Hommert, P.J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Geokinetics in situ shale oil recovery project. Third annual report, 1979

Description: Objective is to develop a true in situ process for recovering shale oil using a fire front moving in a horizontal direction. The project is being conductd at a field site located 70 miles south of Vernal, Utah. During 1979, five retorts were blasted. Four of these were small retorts (approx. 7000 tons), designed to collect data for improving the blast method. The fifth retort was a prototype of a full-sized retort measuring approximately 200 ft on each side. Two retorts, blasted the previous year, were burned, and a third retort was ignited near the end of the year. A total of 5170 bbl of oil was produced during the year.
Date: May 1, 1980
Creator: Hutchinson, D.L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Investigation of the Geokinetics horizontal in situ oil shale retorting process. Quarterly report, January-March 1980

Description: Retort No. 18 produced 3479 barrels of oil during the quarter for a total of 4528 barrels to date. Chromatographic analyses of Retort No. 18 shale oil by the GKI analytical laboratory indicated variation in the oil from the wells near the air-in end and from the air-out end of the retort. Shale oil has been blended with Altamont crude (the Roosevelt refinery's normal feedstock); the distillation, API gravity, pour point, flash point, Naptha and Cat Gas were not affected by the shale oil. The diesel off the crude unit changed from water white to yellow, however, and a fine grayish-brown precipitate formed. Re-entry drilling was performed on Retorts No. 21, No. 22, and No. 23 during the quarter; tracer tests were run by Sandia Laboratories on Retorts No. 19, No. 21, No. 22, and No. 23. Blasthole drilling began on Retort No. 25.
Date: May 1, 1980
Creator: Hutchinson, D.L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Initial evaluation of fracturing oil shale with propellants for in situ retorting, Phase 2

Description: A series of field experiments was carried out to gather preliminary information on the use of propellant charges to create horizontal fractures in oil shale beds for in situ retorting. Development of a propellant tool specifically designed to create horizontal fractures, and testing of various sizes and designs of the tool to create fractures in oil shale beds were carried out simultaneously. Ten prototype tools with energy yields from 2 pounds to 60 pounds were fired at depths ranging from 10 feet to 60 feet. Ten preshot observation holes and 13 postshot core holes were used to gather information and to serve as injection wells to inject air into the formation for permeability tests. Most shots vented large volumes of gas or water from observation holes 13 to 20 feet distant, indicating that a horizontal fracture communicating from the shot point to the observation hole had been created. Shot-related horizontal fracturing was noted in most core holes at the same depth as the shot point. Air injection tests on all holes showed a significant increase in permeability after the shots.
Date: May 1, 1991
Creator: Lekas, M.A.; Lekas, J.M. & Strickland, F.G.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

BX in situ oil shale project. Quarterly technical progress report, September 1-November 30, 1981

Description: September 1, 1981-November 30, 1981, was the fourth consecutive quarter of superheated steam injection at the BX In Situ Oil Shale Project. During the quarter, 117,520 barrels of water as steam were injected into project injection wells at an average wellhead temperature of 715/sup 0/F and an average wellhead pressure of 1378 PSIG. During the same period, 148,516 barrels of fluid were produced from the project production wells for a produced-to-injected fluid ratio of 1.26 to 1.0. Net oil production for the quarter was 169 barrels.
Date: December 20, 1981
Creator: Dougan, P.M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

BX in-situ oil-shale project. Quarterly technical progress report, June 1, 1981-August 31, 1981

Description: June 1, 1981-August 31, 1981 was the third consecutive quarter of superheated steam injection at the BX In Situ Oil Shale Project. Injection was continuous except for the period of July 14th to August 1st when the injection was suspended during the drilling of core hole BX-37. During the quarter, 99,760 barrels of water as superheated steam were injected into Project injection wells at an average well head temperature of 752/sup 0/F and an average wellhead pressure of 1312 PSIG. During the same period, 135,469 barrels of fluid were produced from the Project production wells for a produced to injected fluid ratio of 1.36 to 1.0. Net oil production during the quarter was 38 barrels.
Date: September 20, 1981
Creator: Dougan, P.M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

System for producing a uniform rubble bed for in-situ processes

Description: A method and a cutter are disclosed for producing a large cavity filled with a uniform bed of rubblized oil shale or other material, for in-situ processing. A raise drill head has a hollow body with a generally circular base and sloping upper surface. A hollow shaft extends from the hollow body. Cutter teeth are mounted on the upper surface of the body and relatively small holes are formed in the body between the cutter teeth. Relatively large peripheral flutes around the body allow material to drop below the drill head. A pilot hole is drilled into the oil shale deposit. The pilot hole is reamed into a large diameter hole by means of a large diameter raise drill head or cutter to produce a cavity filled with rubble. A flushing fluid, such as air, is circulated through the pilot hole during the reaming operation to remove fines through the raise drill, thereby removing sufficient material to create sufficient void space, and allowing the larger particles to fill the cavity and provide a uniform bed of rubblized oil shale.
Date: April 10, 1981
Creator: Galloway, T.R.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Statistical theory of fragmentation

Description: An initially exponential distribution of cracks that grow in size and nucleate additional cracks is analyzed, leading to an expression for the statistical distribution of cracks as a function of time in closed form. The results are used to derive a reduced modulus for the cracked material. An approach to three-dimensional calculations of fragmentation is also discussed.
Date: January 1, 1978
Creator: Dienes, J.K.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Energy from true in situ processing of Antrim Shale: extraction trials in an explosively fractured site

Description: Three in situ energy extraction trials were conducted at The Dow Chemical Company's oil shale site, in Michigan's Sanilac County, near the town of Peck. Here the Antrim shale layer occurs between 1200 and 1400 feet underground. The trials began on October 14, 1979, and ended on April 1, 1980. The three trials, lasting 7, 60 and 17 days respectively, were conducted in a formation prepared by explosive fracturing. Ignition energy was generated with a methane burner. Some energy in the form of a dilute fuel gas (5 to 50 btu/scf) was recovered in each trial but upon ignition drastic decreases in flow communication occurred between injection and production wells. That problem prevented the planned exploration of techniques which would raise the energy value of the production gas. Upon cool down of the formation after each trial, air permeability tests showed inter-well communication levels returning to near preburn levels. Thermal expansion is the most likely cause of the reduced permeability experienced under retorting conditions.
Date: August 1, 1980
Creator: VanDerPloeg, M.L.; Peil, C.A.; Kinkel, C.G.; Pihlaja, R.K.; Murdick, D.A.; Frost, J.R. et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Dynamic rock fragmentation: oil shale applications

Description: Explosive rock fragmentation techniques used in many resource recovery operations have in the past relied heavily upon traditions of field experience for their design. As these resources, notably energy resources, become less accessible, it becomes increasingly important that fragmentation techniques be optimized and that methods be developed to effectively evaluate new or modified explosive deployment schemes. Computational procedures have significant potential in these areas, but practical applications must be preceded by a thorough understanding of the rock fracture phenomenon and the development of physically sound computational models. This paper presents some of the important features of a rock fragmentation model that was developed as part of a program directed at the preparation of subterranean beds for in situ processing of oil shale. The model, which has been implemented in a two-dimensional Lagrangian wavecode, employs a continuum damage concept to quantify the degree of fracturing and takes into account experimental observations that fracture strength and fragment dimensions depend on tensile strain rates. The basic premises of the model are considered in the paper as well as some comparisons between calculated results and observations from blasting experiments.
Date: January 1, 1980
Creator: Boade, R. R.; Grady, D. E. & Kipp, M. E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Model capabilities for in-situ oil shale recovery

Description: The extensive oil shale reserves of the United States are now under development as an energy source. One of the approaches for extracting oil from shale is the so-called modified in-situ retort. The operation of such retorts for maximum yield requires an understanding of oil loss mechanisms so that operating strategies that minimize these losses can be developed. The present modeling capabilities for describing the behavior and yield from a modified in-situ retort are discussed. It is shown how the advances made in describing retort chemistry have greatly increased the predictive capabilities of these models. Two models that have been subject to comparison with laboratory retorts are described. The first is a one-dimensional model that treats the retort as a packed bed reactor, the second is a quasi-two-dimensional examination of block retorting. Both models are capable of predicting retorting rates, off gas composition and oil yield losses to coking and combustion. The block model, for example, describes conditions where local oil yield losses can be as high as 50%. Areas for further model improvement include additional work on describing retort chemistry, such as the steam/char and gas phase combustion reactions. The major need for modeling now is expansion to multi-dimensional simulation. This is necessary if a predictive capability is to be developed for field situations where sweep efficiency losses and gravitational effects become important.
Date: January 1, 1980
Creator: Hommert, P.J. & Tyner, C.E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Multiple-tracer gas analyzer

Description: A multi-gas tracer system has been designed, built, and used on an explosively fractured oil shale rubble bed. This paper deals exclusively with the hardware, software, and overall operation of the tracer system. This system is a field portable, self-contained unit, which utilizes a mass spectrometer for gas analysis. The unit has a 20 channel sample port capability and is controlled by a desk top computer. The system is configured to provide a dynamic sensitivity range of up to six orders of magnitude. A roots blower is manifolded to the unit to provide continuous flow in all sample lines. The continuous flow process allows representative samples as well as decreasing the time between each measurement. Typical multiplex cycle time to evaluate four unique gases is approximately 12 seconds.
Date: January 1, 1982
Creator: Uhl, J.E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Oil shale programs. Sixteenth quarterly report, October-December 1979

Description: This document is the sixteenth in a continuing series of quarterly reports, and describes the Sandia National Laboratories oil shale activities during the period between October 1, 1979 and December 31, 1979. Sandia's major responsibility to the DOE in situ oil shale program is to provide a quantitative evaluation to DOE of the various field projects being supported by DOE in the development of commercial in situ oil shale processes. This requires the deployment of instrumentation systems and analysis techniques to evaluate key procedures and operations. In order to fulfill this responsibility, it is necessary to develop new and advanced instrumentation systems and associated deployment, recording and analysis techniques that are unique to the field projects. In addition, a rock mechanics program provides material properties, material response models, and computational methods to support the design and evaluation functions. This report describes detailed activities in these project areas over the last quarter.
Date: June 1, 1980
Creator: Stevens, A. L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Stress wave propagationin the site 12 hydraulic/explosive fracturing experiment

Description: The Site 12 experiment was a heavily instrumented field event performed to examine the hydraulic/explosive fracturing concept for preparing an underground oil shale bed for true in situ processing. One of the key phases of this fracturing concept is the blasting operation which involves the insertion and detonation of slurry explosive in a pre-formed system of hydrofractures. To obtain a sound understanding of the nature of the blasting operations, a rather extensive array of stress gages, accelerometers, and time-of-arrival gages was installed in the rock mass in the vacinity of the explosive to monitor the dynamic events initiated by the detonation. These gages provided considerable amounts of information which were useful in evaluating overall results of the experiment. Details of the gage array, of the data, of analysis methods, and of the results and conclusions are considered in the report.
Date: May 1, 1980
Creator: Boade, R. R. & Reed, R. P.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

True in-situ bed preparation: oil shale and tar sand

Description: In 1978, a detailed study was conducted to evaluate the status of the bed preparation technology that had been developed for true in-situ processing of oil shale. It was concluded that the two techniques which had received the bulk of the attention in prior field experimentation, namely the wellbore springing and hydraulic/explosive fracturing concepts, both had inherent traits which would prevent them from being useful in practical applications. In the current paper, the previous results are reviewed to determine whether or not they are also applicable to tar sand. The conclusion reached is that neither technique would be practical for preparing a tar sands deposit for in-situ processing.
Date: January 1, 1980
Creator: Boade, R. R.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Simulated in situ retorting of oil shale in a controlled-state retort. III. Dynamic oil film thickness on partially retorted and unretorted shale

Description: The amount of oil washed from the partially retorted and unretorted shales from 14 interrupted runs of the controlled-state retort has been used to estimate dynamic oil film thickness on those shales. The data obtained indicated that factors that affect oil viscosity determine oil film thickness. For example, in the heated region of the retort, temperature was the controlling factor for oil film thickness. In the unheated region controlling factors included proximity to the heated region, gas composition and flow rate, retorting advance rate, and breadth of retorting zone. Factors that affected oil composition and thereby increased viscosity, such as increased gas velocity, oxygen in the retorting gas, slower retorting advance rate, and thinner retorting zone, increased oil film thickness. In the unheated region of the retort the oil film was thickest nearest the heated region gradually tapering to a more or less constant value approximately 1 meter from the heated region. Oil shale particle size did not affect oil film thickness.
Date: February 1, 1982
Creator: Duvall, J. J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department