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thermal EOR and steamflooding

Heat any thick fluid – honey, maple syrup or heavy oil – and it flows easier. Flooding reservoirs with steam, Chevron’s enhanced oil recovery (EOR) operations have yielded billions of barrels of viscous heavy oil, with more to come. In optimum locations, steamflooding can eventually capture up to 70 percent of a reservoir’s oil, twice the recovery rate of conventional fields.

But making it happen requires continuous development and myriad technologies across complex, highly reliable operations. Technologies like exceptional efficiency in energy use and drilling, sophisticated reservoir surveillance, underground heat management, continuous drilling, and sensors on thousands of wells (one Chevron team in California monitors 18,000 wells from one room).

Chevron pioneered steamflooding in California at its Kern River Field, then transferred this know-how to Duri Field in Indonesia. Next is perfecting steamfloods in other major reservoirs where Chevron has legacy positions to unlock millions of new barrels of production.

Updated: July 2015