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Thu 30 Jun 2005 04:00 AM

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Oman strives to increase production

Petroleum Development Oman(PDO) has been given the go ahead sign for a pilot enhanced oil recovery project to increase production of the Qarn Alam field to 40,000 barrels per day(bpd).

Petroleum Development Oman (PDO) is going ahead with a project to raise production in Qarn Alam field from 1000 barrels per day (bpd) to 40,000 barrels per day (bpd). The Qarn Alam Steam project is a pilot enhanced oil recovery (EOR) project, which is currently in the front end engineering design (FEED) stage.

This project involves heating up the entire fractured carbonate reservoir by injecting steam into the formation. This in turn reduces the viscosity of the oil in the matrix and enhances gas oil gravity drainage (GOGD).

Oman’s oil production has been declining over the years owing to the failure of heavy oil recovery. EOR specialists, Occidental Petroleum have gained access to the Mukhaizna field in Oman, after the failure of other companies to recover the heavy oil.

But, the Qarn Alam steam project initiated by PDO is a five-year project slated between 2007 and 2012, where 130 to 140 wells would be drilled in the field for this recovery mechanism, said a spokesperson speaking to Oil&Gas Middle East.

He also said that 100,000 barrels per day of water would be needed for the steam injection into these wells. The contract for this project was won by Calgary based MEG Worley, and the engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) is expected to be awarded during 2006, while tenders would be announced at the start of the year. The company has not yet released figures, relating to the cost of design or execution, of the project.

Project manager Sami Baqi said: “There is still a lot of work to be done as we head toward the opening of the tender for the EPC contract, but with construction of the plant due to start late next year or early 2007, we can truly say that it is full steam ahead for Qarn Alam.”

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