Pertamina to start EOR program in Tanjung field
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Pertamina EP, the upstream business unit of state-owned oil and gas company PT Pertamina, will use enhanced oil recovery (EOR) technology to increase oil production at the ageing Tanjung oil field in South Kalimantan.
Pertamina EP’s president director, Syamsu Alam, said in Jakarta on Thursday that the company would shortly drill a well in a trial operation on the use of EOR technology in the Tanjung field. “According to our lab results, oil production can be increased by 10 percent if we succeed with the EOR program,” he said.
Syamsu said the result of the pilot project would be seen after one or two years, namely in 2014 or 2015.
Pertamina secured a contract from the government in 2005 to develop the Tanjung field, which covers around 138.611 square kilometers. Currently, the field is in its tertiary extraction phase with potential oil production of 4,500 barrels of oil per day (bpd).
Pertamina EP spokesman Agus Amperianto told The Jakarta Post that as of this month the average production at the Tanjung field was 4,300 bpd.
He said as part of the EOR, the company would inject a complex substance called surfactant to erode oil that was stuck in the reservoirs.
The EOR method using surfactant was developed some time ago in Indonesian universities and several companies have already tried to utilize the technology. However, due to the amount of initial investment needed, it was not widely adopted in the country.
EOR technology is commonly applied for oil production fields that have reached secondary or tertiary extraction phases during which the natural drive inside oil reservoirs begins to diminish, therefore making it more difficult to extract the oil.
Typically, a recovery operation in an oil field after primary and secondary extraction phases have been completed can realize oil production of between 35 to 45 percent on average.
According to upstream oil and gas regulator BPMigas, several EOR are due to be conducted this year at several oil fields that have reached their tertiary extraction phases.
Among these fields are the Minas field in Riau, owned by PT Chevron Pacific Indonesia; Kaji-Semoga in the Rimau block, South Sumatra, owned by PT Medco Energy; and Pertamina EP’s Tanjung field.
BPMigas revealed in a statement provided to the Post recently that the EORs for the Minas and Kaji-Semoga fields would be initiated in October.