Electric Current Or Electrical Wave Energy Through Earth For Treating Patents (Class 166/248)
  • Patent number: 9739131
    Abstract: The invention concerns a method for stimulating a treatment zone near a wellbore area in fluid connection with at least one porous zone of a subterranean formation, said method comprising the steps of generating (S1a) at least one electrical discharge in said wellbore at a distance from the at least one porous zone in order to propagate at least one shock wave adapted to fracture said treatment zone and introducing (S2a) a chemical agent within said treatment zone for increasing the permeability of said treatment zone.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 11, 2017
    Date of Patent: August 22, 2017
    Assignee: Blue Spark Energy Inc.
    Inventors: Todd Parker, Shawn Carroll, Dan Skibinski
  • Patent number: 9702236
    Abstract: A method for recovering subsurface hydrocarbons, including heavy oil or bitumen, wherein a downhole steam injection phase is followed by application of heat to the near-wellbore region of the reservoir, heat being applied only during periods without steam injection. The heat application can be achieved by any number of techniques including electrical heaters, radio frequency waves, electromagnetic waves and microwaves. Numerous advantages are possible by withholding heat application during the steam injection phase. While preferred for use with cyclic steam stimulation recovery techniques, the method can be applied with other steam-based recovery techniques.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 2, 2014
    Date of Patent: July 11, 2017
    Assignee: Husky Oil Operations Limited
    Inventor: Samuel Ojagbohunmi
  • Patent number: 9657559
    Abstract: Methods and systems for causing reaction driven cracking in subsurface rock formations are disclosed. In some embodiments, the methods include the following: drilling one or more holes in a substantially porous subsurface rock formation, the one or more holes in fluid communication with pores in the subsurface rock formation; injecting in the pores via at least one of the holes one or more fluids, wherein the one or more fluids include a gas; and chemically reacting the one or more fluids within the pores thereby causing cracking in the substantially porous subsurface rock formation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 29, 2013
    Date of Patent: May 23, 2017
    Assignee: The Trustees of Columbia University in the City of New York
    Inventors: Peter Kelemen, Heather Savage, Theodore A. Koczynski
  • Patent number: 9567840
    Abstract: The invention concerns a method for stimulating a treatment zone near a wellbore area in fluid connection with at least one porous zone of a subterranean formation, said method comprising the steps of generating (S1a) at least one electrical discharge in said wellbore at a distance from the at least one porous zone in order to propagate at least one shock wave adapted to fracture said treatment zone and introducing (S2a) a chemical agent within said treatment zone for increasing the permeability of said treatment zone.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 27, 2015
    Date of Patent: February 14, 2017
    Assignee: BLUE SPARK ENERGY INC.
    Inventors: Todd Parker, Shawn Carroll, Dan Skibinski
  • Patent number: 9567874
    Abstract: A fluid latent heat absorption electric induction heater is provided for raising the temperature of a fluid supplied to a fluid-driven turbine in a turbine-driven electric power generation system. The fluid latent heat absorption electric induction heater alternatively transfers heat to the fluid by induced susceptor heating, or a combination of inductor Joule heating and induced susceptor heating. The fluid may be water-steam for powering a steam-driven turbine or another fluid used in a phase change system for driving a fluid-driven turbine in a turbine-driven electric power generation system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: June 22, 2014
    Date of Patent: February 14, 2017
    Assignee: INDUCTOTHERM CORP.
    Inventors: Satyen N. Prabhu, Joseph T. Belsh, Mike Maochang Cao
  • Patent number: 9567510
    Abstract: CO2 scavenging additives having one or more cyanamide functionalities for the reduction of corrosion in subterranean formations are disclosed. The additives are also suitable for the simultaneous scavenging of CO2 and H2S. The additives can be introduced by way of a treatment fluid for the subterranean formation to interact with and reduce the concentration of CO2 and/or H2S in the formation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 11, 2014
    Date of Patent: February 14, 2017
    Assignee: Halliburton Energy Services, Inc.
    Inventors: Rajender Salla, Neelam Deepak Raysoni, Sushant Dattaram Wadekar, Vijaya Kumar Patnana
  • Patent number: 9494024
    Abstract: A heater includes a heater housing with a fuel cell stack assembly disposed therein. The fuel cell stack assembly includes a plurality of fuel cells which convert chemical energy from a fuel into heat and electricity through a chemical reaction with an oxidizing agent. The fuel cell stack assembly includes a fuel cell manifold for receiving the fuel within a fuel inlet and the oxidizing agent within an oxidizing agent inlet and distributing the fuel and oxidizing agent to the fuel cells. A fuel supply conduit supplies the fuel to the fuel inlet and an oxidizing agent supply conduit supplies the oxidizing agent to the oxidizing agent inlet. A sonic orifice is disposed between the fuel supply conduit and the fuel inlet or between the oxidizing agent supply conduit and the oxidizing agent inlet, thereby limiting the velocity of the fuel or the oxidizing agent through the sonic orifice.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 29, 2013
    Date of Patent: November 15, 2016
    Assignee: Delphi Technologies, Inc.
    Inventors: Bernhard A. Fischer, Karl J. Haltiner, Jr.
  • Patent number: 9486844
    Abstract: A method for treatment of saline-alkali land is provided, comprising at least one self-circulating process, the self-circulating process comprising: step 1, converting saline-alkali water deposited in the saline-alkali land into acidic water by an electrolysis system, whereby the salt content of the acidic water is lower than that of the saline-alkali water; and step 2, leaching the saline-alkali land with leaching water comprising the acidic water. A device for treatment of saline-alkali land according to the above-described method is also provided, comprising: an electrolysis system for converting saline-alkali water deposited in the saline-alkali land into acidic water, whereby the salt content of the acidic water is lower than that of the saline-alkali water; and a leaching system for leaching the saline-alkali land with leaching water comprising the acidic water.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 5, 2014
    Date of Patent: November 8, 2016
    Assignee: Beijing Nano Hi-Tech Material Co., Ltd.
    Inventors: Zhijiang Guo, Yang Yu, Hongwei Chen, Gong Jin, Jiangping Tu, Xiuli Wang
  • Patent number: 9474108
    Abstract: A device for processing hydrocarbon resources in a subterranean formation may include a radio frequency (RF) source, a dielectric cooling liquid source, and an RF applicator in the subterranean formation and coupled to the RF source to supply RF power to the hydrocarbon resources. The RF applicator may include concentric tubular conductors defining cooling passageways therebetween coupled to the dielectric cooling fluid source. At least one property of the dielectric cooling liquid, a flow rate of the dielectric cooling liquid, and a configuration of the cooling passageways may be operable together to generate a turbulent flow of the dielectric cooling liquid adjacent surfaces of the plurality of concentric tubular conductors to enhance thermal transfer.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 9, 2013
    Date of Patent: October 18, 2016
    Assignee: HARRIS CORPORATION
    Inventors: Murray Hann, Mark Alan Trautman, John E. White, Brian Wright
  • Patent number: 9458704
    Abstract: A method of using an electrochemical gas lift apparatus to induce artificial gas lift in a production fluid includes introducing the electrochemical gas lift apparatus into a well bore having a production zone, operating the electrochemical gas lift apparatus such that a combination of hydrocarbon fluid and formation water is introduced into the interior of the electrochemical gas lift apparatus, introducing electrical power to the electrochemical gas lift apparatus such that at least a portion of formation water in the interior of the electrochemical gas lift apparatus converts into product gases, operating the electrochemical gas lift apparatus such that the product gases form product gas bubbles in the interior of the electrochemical gas lift apparatus, and operating the electrochemical gas lift apparatus such that production fluid forms in the interior of the electrochemical gas lift apparatus. The production fluid comprises hydrocarbon fluid, unconverted formation water and product gas bubbles.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 22, 2014
    Date of Patent: October 4, 2016
    Assignee: Saudi Arabian Oil Company
    Inventors: Abdulrahman Abdulaziz Al-Mulhem, Mohamed Nabil Noui-Mehidi
  • Patent number: 9453400
    Abstract: A method for heating heavy oil inside a production well. The method raises the subsurface temperature of heavy oil by utilizing an activator that has been injected below the surface. The activator is then excited with a generated non-microwave frequency from 0.1 MHz to 300 MHz such that the excited activator heats the heavy oil.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 14, 2011
    Date of Patent: September 27, 2016
    Assignees: ConocoPhillips Company, Harris Corporation
    Inventors: Thomas James Wheeler, Wayne Reid Dreher, Francis Eugene Parsche, Mark Alan Trautman
  • Patent number: 9429003
    Abstract: Methods for recovering methane gas from natural gas hydrates are provided. A representative method includes the step of adding a gas mixture containing air and carbon dioxide to a natural gas hydrate (NGH), the step of replacing the methane gas with the gas mixture, and the step of decomposition-replacement of methane hydrate.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 11, 2014
    Date of Patent: August 30, 2016
    Assignee: KOREA ADVANCED INSTITUTE OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
    Inventors: Huen Lee, Dong Yeun Koh
  • Patent number: 9416639
    Abstract: A hydrocarbon resource recovery apparatus for a subterranean formation having a wellbore extending therein includes a radio frequency (RF) power source, a gas source, and an RF antenna within the wellbore. An RF transmission line extends within the wellbore between the RF power source and the RF antenna and is coupled to the gas source to be cooled and/or pressure balanced by a flow of gas therefrom. At least one of the RF antenna and RF transmission line define a gas lift passageway coupled to the gas source to lift hydrocarbon resources within the wellbore.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 13, 2014
    Date of Patent: August 16, 2016
    Assignee: HARRIS CORPORATION
    Inventors: Ryan Matthew Whitney, Keith Nugent, Raymond C. Hewit, Brian N. Wright
  • Patent number: 9410408
    Abstract: A method (and system) is provided that enhances production of hydrocarbons from a subterranean formation by identifying at least one target interval of the subterranean formation that is in proximity to a pay interval, wherein the at least one target interval has an electrical resistance less than electrical resistance of the pay interval. A plurality of electrodes are placed in positions spaced apart from one another and adjacent the at least one target interval. Electrical current is injected into the target interval by supplying electrical signals to the plurality of electrodes. The electrical current injected into the at least one target interval passes through at least a portion of the at least one target interval in order to heat the at least one target interval and heat the pay interval by thermal conduction for enhancement of production of hydrocarbons from the pay interval.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 12, 2013
    Date of Patent: August 9, 2016
    Assignee: SCHLUMBERGER TECHNOLOGY CORPORATION
    Inventors: Brian Oliver Clark, Robert L. Kleinberg, Nikita V. Seleznev
  • Patent number: 9397361
    Abstract: The subject matter disclosed herein relates to a system and method for generation of power that does not generate carbon dioxide in a harmful manner, and/or removes and/or captures carbon dioxide that may otherwise be expelled into the atmosphere.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 3, 2013
    Date of Patent: July 19, 2016
    Inventor: Christopher J Papile
  • Patent number: 9394772
    Abstract: A method for pyrolyzing organic matter in a subterranean formation includes powering a first generation in situ resistive heating element within an aggregate electrically conductive zone at least partially in a first region of the subterranean formation by transmitting an electrical current between a first electrode pair in electrical contact with the first generation in situ resistive heating element to pyrolyze a second region of the subterranean formation, adjacent the first region, to expand the aggregate electrically conductive zone into the second region, wherein the expanding creates a second generation in situ resistive heating element within the second region and powering the second generation in situ resistive heating element by transmitting an electrical current between a second electrode pair in electrical contact with the second generation in situ resistive heating element to generate heat with the second generation in situ resistive heating element within the second region.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 17, 2014
    Date of Patent: July 19, 2016
    Assignee: ExxonMobil Upstream Research Company
    Inventors: William P. Meurer, Chen Fang, Federico G. Gallo, Nazish Hoda, Michael W. Lin
  • Patent number: 9382765
    Abstract: A device for recovering hydrocarbon resources in a subterranean formation may include a radio frequency (RF) source, a ferrofluid source, and an RF applicator coupled to the RF source and configured to supply RF power to the hydrocarbon resources. The RF applicator may include concentric tubular conductors defining ferrofluid passageways therebetween coupled to the ferrofluid source.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 15, 2013
    Date of Patent: July 5, 2016
    Assignee: HARRIS CORPORATION
    Inventor: Francis Eugene Parsche
  • Patent number: 9353612
    Abstract: The disclosure provides a downhole tool, and method of using the downhole tool, for enhancing recovery of heavy oil from a formation. A method for enhancing recovery of heavy oil from a formation includes placing a downhole tool in a first wellbore. The downhole tool has an outer core having at least one ceramic portion and at least one electromagnetic antenna located within the outer core. Electromagnetic radiation is emitted from the at least one electromagnetic antenna to heat the at least one ceramic portion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 6, 2014
    Date of Patent: May 31, 2016
    Assignee: Saudi Arabian Oil Company
    Inventor: Sameeh Issa Batarseh
  • Patent number: 9347302
    Abstract: The disclosure concerns methods for heating a subsurface formation using an electrical resistance heater. Preferably, the subsurface formation is an organic-rich rock formation, including, for example, an oil shale formation. The method may include providing an electrically conductive first member in a wellbore in a subsurface fornation, an electrically conductive second member in the wellbore, and an electrically conductive granular material in the wellbore. The granular material is positioned so as to provide an electrical connection between the first member and the second member. An electrical current is established across the first member, the granular material and the second member so as to generate resistive heat within the granular material. The surrounding subsurface formation is thereby conductively heated so as to cause formation hydrocarbons in the formation to be heated, and in some cases, pyrolyzed to form hydrocarbon fluids.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 12, 2013
    Date of Patent: May 24, 2016
    Assignee: ExxonMobil Upstream Research Company
    Inventor: Robert D. Kaminsky
  • Patent number: 9328597
    Abstract: An electrically stimulated electrode system comprises injection and return electrodes and a power supply for causing electrical current to flow through a subterranean formation. An electronic system for the injection electrode includes: a power harvester extracting electrical power from current flowing in the injection electrode, a control for the injection electrode current, a sensor of the injection electrode and/or formation, or a telemetry for the injection electrode and/or formation, or any combination thereof. A sensor comprises: a pair of spaced apart electrodes, a power conversion device connected to the spaced apart electrodes for providing electrical power, and a processor providing a representation of a current.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 3, 2012
    Date of Patent: May 3, 2016
    Assignee: Electro-Petroleum, Inc.
    Inventor: Marian Morys
  • Patent number: 9320987
    Abstract: The invention refers to a methodology for the removal of inorganic components such as potassium, sodium, chlorine, sulfur, phosphorus and heavy metals from biomass of different origins, such as from agricultural, forest or urban origin and any mixture therefrom, from low quality coals such as peat, lignite or sub-bituminous and/or bituminous coals, from urban and/or industrial origin residues and wastes, which are possible to include as much organic—>5 wt %—as inorganic—<95 wt %—material and from sludges that are obtained from sewage treatment plants. The method includes the following steps: providing a salt, mixing water with the salt to produce an aqueous solution that contains salt, leaching the raw material with the aqueous solution that contains salt, preferably a salt containing zirconium or yttrium.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 27, 2011
    Date of Patent: April 26, 2016
    Assignee: Thermoretinary Technologies Inc.
    Inventor: Emmanuel G. Koukios
  • Patent number: 9297240
    Abstract: Production of heavy oil and bitumen from a reservoir is enhanced by cyclic radio frequency (RF) radiation of the well. The invention utilizes RF radiation to introduce energy to the hydrocarbon reservoir in cycles in order to heat the reservoir directly, yet conserves energy over the prior art processes that more or less continuously apply RF or microwave energy. The advantage of cyclic RF is it uses less electricity, and thus lowers operating costs. This is achieved by the soak cycle that allows heat to conduct into the formation and assists the heat penetration that is directly radiated into the formation by the antenna. The invention can also be advantageously combined with cyclic steam stimulation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 21, 2012
    Date of Patent: March 29, 2016
    Assignees: ConocoPhillips Company, Harris Corporation
    Inventors: Daniel Sultenfuss, Mark Trautman, Francis Parsche
  • Patent number: 9284826
    Abstract: Provided herein are embodiments for extracting oil from an oil-bearing formation. An embodiment of a method includes heating a first portion of the formation with radio frequency energy generated by a radio frequency generator electrically coupled to an antenna. The antenna is positioned within a wellbore and located within the first portion to heat the first portion to a minimum temperature of about 160° F. The radio frequency generator delivers power in a range from about 50 kilowatts to about 2 Megawatts, and a power per unit length of antenna is in a range from about 0.5 kW/m to 5 kW/m. The method includes extracting the oil from the first portion after heating to create void space for steam injection. The method also includes injecting steam into the first portion to heat a second portion of the formation adjacent to the first portion and extracting the oil from the second portion.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 15, 2013
    Date of Patent: March 15, 2016
    Assignee: CHEVRON U.S.A. INC.
    Inventors: Michael John Campbell, Kathleen Judith Miller, Gunther Hans Dieckmann, James Thomas Dunlavey, Cesar Ovalles, Donald Leroy Kuehne
  • Patent number: 9267366
    Abstract: An apparatus is for heating hydrocarbon resources in a subterranean formation having a wellbore therein. The apparatus includes an RF source, and a magnetic field radiator including a ferromagnetic body having an aboveground portion and a belowground portion coupled thereto. The magnetic field radiator includes a conductive wire coil surrounding the aboveground portion and coupled to the RF source so that an RF current through the conductive wire coil magnetizes the ferromagnetic body and generates a magnetic field from the belowground portion to heat the hydrocarbon resources.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 7, 2013
    Date of Patent: February 23, 2016
    Assignee: HARRIS CORPORATION
    Inventor: Francis Eugene Parsche
  • Patent number: 9243487
    Abstract: A method is provided to produce hydrocarbons from a formation, the method includes the steps of: placing a pair of electrodes within a formation; applying differential voltages between pairs of electrodes wherein the voltage differences between the electrodes is greater than at least 10,000 volts; and producing hydrocarbons from the formation or an adjacent formation wherein the formation has an initial permeability of less than ten millidarcy. The invention also includes an apparatus effective to release pulses of electrical energy into the formation as this frequency and voltage at least until the formation has reached a point where the electrical potential arcs from one electrode to at least one other electrode.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 28, 2013
    Date of Patent: January 26, 2016
    Assignee: Shell Oil Company
    Inventors: Mikhail Boris Geilikman, John Michael Karanikas, Mohamad Fereydoon Khodaverdian, Ernesto Rafael Fonseca Ocampos, Sau-Wai Wong
  • Patent number: 9222343
    Abstract: A method of heating stacked pay zones in a hydrocarbon formation by radio frequency electromagnetic waves is provided. In particular, radio frequency antenna array having multiple antenna elements are provided inside a hydrocarbon formation that has steam-impermeable structure. The antenna elements are so positioned and configured that the hydrocarbons in the place where conventional thermal methods cannot be used to heat due to the steam-impermeable structure can now be heated by radio frequency electromagnetic waves.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 19, 2012
    Date of Patent: December 29, 2015
    Assignees: ConocoPhillips Company, Harris Corporation
    Inventors: Wendell P. Menard, Daniel R. Sultenfus, Francis E. Parsche, Mark A. Trautman
  • Patent number: 9222341
    Abstract: An artificial lift device is useful for inducing artificial gas lift in a well bore fluid present in a horizontal well bore system using electrically conductive aqueous solution. The artificial lift device includes an ion exchange membrane, an electrode pair having an anode and a cathode separated by the ion exchange membrane, a sensor operable to detect the presence of solution and a power relay operable to selectively permit the electrode pair to receive electrical power. The artificial lift device is operable to form hydrogen product gas bubbles from hydrogen product gas. A method for providing artificial gas lift using the artificial lift device includes forming a horizontal well bore system having a well boot, introducing the artificial lift device into the well bore system, introducing electrical power to the electrode pair, and operating the device to introduce hydrogen product gas bubbles into the horizontal well bore system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 2, 2012
    Date of Patent: December 29, 2015
    Assignee: Saudi Arabian Oil Company
    Inventor: Mohamed Nabil Noui-Mehidi
  • Patent number: 9187979
    Abstract: The extraction of hydrocarbon fuel products such as kerogen oil and gas from a body of fixed fossil fuels such as oil shale is accomplished by applying a combination of electrical energy and critical fluids with reactants and/or catalysts down a borehole to initiate a reaction of reactants in the critical fluids with kerogen in the oil shale thereby raising the temperatures to cause kerogen oil and gas products to be extracted as a vapor, liquid or dissolved in the critical fluids. The hydrocarbon fuel products of kerogen oil or shale oil and hydrocarbon gas are removed to the ground surface by a product return line. An RF generator provides electromagnetic energy, and the critical fluids include a combination of carbon dioxide (CO2), with reactants of nitrous oxide (N2O) or oxygen (O2).
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 30, 2008
    Date of Patent: November 17, 2015
    Assignee: Schlumberger Technology Corporation
    Inventors: Brian C. Considine, John A. Cogliandro, Maureen P. Cogliandro, John M. Moses, John R. Hannon, John P. Markiewicz
  • Patent number: 9181788
    Abstract: A plasma source for generating nonlinear, wide-band, periodic, directed, elastic oscillations in a fluid medium. The plasma source includes a plasma emitter having two electrodes defining a gap, a delivery device for introducing a metal conductor into the gap, and a high voltage transformer for powering the plasma emitter. A system and method for stimulating wells, deposits, and boreholes through controlled periodic oscillations generated using the plasma source. The system includes the plasma source, a ground control unit, and a support cable. In the method, the plasma source is submerged in the fluid medium of a well, deposit, or borehole and is used to create a metallic plasma in the gap. The metallic plasma emits a pressure pulse and shockwaves, which are directed into the fluid medium. Nonlinear, wide-band, periodic and elastic oscillations are generated in the fluid medium, including resonant oscillations by passage of the shockwaves.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 25, 2013
    Date of Patent: November 10, 2015
    Assignee: Novas Energy Group Limited
    Inventors: P. G. Ageev, A. A. Molchanov
  • Patent number: 9157304
    Abstract: A hydrocarbon resource recovery system for a laterally extending wellbore in a subterranean formation may include a radio frequency (RF) source and an electrically conductive well pipe extending within the laterally extending wellbore. The hydrocarbon resource recovery system may further include an RF transmission line coupled to the RF source and extending alongside in parallel with an exterior of the electrically conductive well pipe within the laterally extending wellbore. The RF transmission line may be coupled to the electrically conductive well pipe to define an RF antenna for heating the hydrocarbon resources within the subterranean formation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 3, 2012
    Date of Patent: October 13, 2015
    Assignee: HARRIS CORPORATION
    Inventor: Francis E. Parsche
  • Patent number: 9151146
    Abstract: The disclosure relates to a plant for extracting hydrocarbons contained in an underground formation including: hydrocarbon tapping; at least one generator; at least one electromagnetic heating well in the underground formation, including an electromagnetic heating device connected to the generator; wherein the electromagnetic heating device includes a radiating coaxial line. The disclosure also relates to a method for extracting hydrocarbons from an underground formation able to be implemented using the plant.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 2, 2010
    Date of Patent: October 6, 2015
    Assignee: TOTAL S.A.
    Inventors: Franck Rey-Bethbeder, Jacques Lavaud, Philippe Espagne
  • Patent number: 9140099
    Abstract: A device for heating hydrocarbon resources in a subterranean formation having a wellbore therein may include a radio frequency (RF) antenna positioned within the wellbore. The RF antenna may include a superconductive material. The device may include an RF source configured to supply RF power to the RF antenna to heat the hydrocarbon resources.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 13, 2012
    Date of Patent: September 22, 2015
    Assignee: HARRIS CORPORATION
    Inventor: Francis E. Parsche
  • Patent number: 9133398
    Abstract: Methods for extracting a kerogen-based product from subsurface (oil) shale formations rely on chemically modifying the shale-bound kerogen using a chemical oxidant so as to render it mobile. The oxidant is provided to a formation fluid in contact with the kerogen in the subsurface shale. An alkaline material is also provided to the formation fluid to mobilize organic acids which are produced during oxidation of the kerogen. A mobile kerogen-based product which includes the organic acids is withdrawn from the subsurface shale formation and further processed to isolate the organic acids contained therein. These organic acids are valuable as hydrocarbon products for creating commercial products and a portion of these organic acids can also be used in the process for extracting the kerogen-based product from the subsurface shale formation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 22, 2011
    Date of Patent: September 15, 2015
    Assignee: Chevron U.S.A. Inc.
    Inventors: Marcus Oliver Wigand, Robert Martin Carlson, Mark Dean Looney
  • Patent number: 9103205
    Abstract: A method of recovering hydrocarbon resources in a subterranean formation may include injecting a solvent via a wellbore into the subterranean formation while supplying radio frequency (RF) power from the wellbore and into the subterranean formation. The method may also include recovering hydrocarbon resources via the wellbore and from the subterranean formation while supplying RF power from the wellbore and into the subterranean formation.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 13, 2012
    Date of Patent: August 11, 2015
    Assignee: HARRIS CORPORATION
    Inventors: Brian Wright, Murray Hann, Mark Trautman, Steven Stresau
  • Patent number: 9097108
    Abstract: In a completion for producing methane the bottom hole assembly has a base pipe with porous media surrounding it for equalizing flow along the base pipe. A shape memory polymer foam surrounds the porous media. The borehole can be reamed to reduce produced methane velocities. Surrounding the shape memory polymer is an exterior layer of consolidated proppant or sand that can self-adhere and/or stick to the polymer foam. The proppant or sand can be circulated or squeezed into position although, circulation is preferred. The borehole may enlarge due to shifting sands in an unconsolidated formation as the methane is produced. The bottom hole assembly helps in fluid flow equalization and protects the foam and layers below from high fluid velocities during production.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 11, 2013
    Date of Patent: August 4, 2015
    Assignee: Baker Hughes Incorporated
    Inventors: Michael H. Johnson, Mark K. Adam, Bennett M. Richard
  • Patent number: 9080441
    Abstract: A method for heating a subsurface formation using electrical resistance heating is provided. The method includes placing a first electrically conductive proppant into a fracture within an interval of organic-rich rock. The first electrically conductive proppant has a first bulk resistivity. The method further includes placing a second electrically conductive proppant into the fracture. The second electrically conductive proppant has a second bulk resistivity that is lower than the first bulk resistivity, and is in electrical communication with the first proppant at three or more terminal locations. The method then includes passing an electric current through the second electrically conductive proppant at a selected terminal and through the first electrically conductive proppant, such that heat is generated within the fracture by electrical resistivity. The operator may monitor resistance and switch terminals for the most efficient heating.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 26, 2012
    Date of Patent: July 14, 2015
    Assignee: ExxonMobil Upstream Research Company
    Inventors: William P. Meurer, Matthew T. Shanley, Abdel Wadood M. El-Rabaa
  • Patent number: 9051829
    Abstract: A system for treating a subsurface formation includes a plurality of conduits at least partially located in a portion of a hydrocarbon containing formation. At least part of two of the conduits are aligned in relation to each other such that electrical current will flow from a first conduit to a second conduit. The first and second conduits include electrically conductive material and at least one of the first and second conduits is perforated or configured to be perforated. A power supply is coupled to the first and second conduits. The power supply electrically excites at least one of the conductive sections such that current flows between the first conduit and the second conduit in the formation and heats at least a portion of the formation between the two conduits.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 9, 2009
    Date of Patent: June 9, 2015
    Assignee: Shell Oil Company
    Inventors: Xueying Xie, Oluropo Rufus Ayodele, Harold J. Vinegar, Christopher Kelvin Harris, John Michael Karanikas, Chester Ledlie Sandberg, Dhruv Arora
  • Patent number: 9044731
    Abstract: A radio frequency (RF) hydrocarbon resource upgrading device may include a first hydrocarbon resource upgrading path that may include a plurality of first RF power applicator stages coupled in series. Each first RF power stage is configured to apply RF power to upgrade a hydrocarbon resource passing therethrough. The RF hydrocarbon resource upgrading device may also include a second hydrocarbon resource upgrading path that may include at least one second RF power applicator stage coupled in parallel with at least one of the first RF power applicator stages. The second RF power applicator stage is configured to apply RF power to upgrade the hydrocarbon resource passing therethrough.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 13, 2012
    Date of Patent: June 2, 2015
    Assignee: HARRIS CORPORATION
    Inventors: Mark Ernest Blue, Lisa Patton Zastrow, Ryan Matthew Whitney, Ronald Edward Jackson, Jr., John Anton Meyer
  • Patent number: 9033033
    Abstract: Disclosed herein are methods for extracting a kerogen-based product from subsurface (oil) shale formations. These methods rely on chemically modifying the shale-bound kerogen using a chemical oxidant so as to render it mobile. The oxidant is provided to a formation fluid in contact with the kerogen in the subsurface shale utilizing electrokinetic-induced migration. An electric field is generated through at least a portion of the kerogen rich zone to induce electrokinetic migration of the oxidant. A mobile kerogen-based product, that includes reaction products of kerogen conversion, is urged toward a production well utilizing electrokinetic-induced migration, and withdrawn from the subsurface shale formation. An electric field generated through at least a portion of the kerogen rich zone can also be utilized to induce migration of catalysts or catalyst precursors.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 22, 2011
    Date of Patent: May 19, 2015
    Assignee: Chevron U.S.A. Inc.
    Inventors: David Glynn Thomas, Marcus O. Wigand
  • Publication number: 20150129202
    Abstract: A method for heating hydrocarbon resources in a subterranean formation may include positioning a tubular conductor within a wellbore in the subterranean formation and slidably positioning a radio frequency (RF) transmission line within the tubular conductor so that a distal end of the transmission line is electrically coupled to the tubular conductor. The method may also include supplying RF power, via the RF transmission line, to the tubular conductor so that the tubular conductor serves as an RF antenna to heat the hydrocarbon resources in the subterranean formation.
    Type: Application
    Filed: November 11, 2013
    Publication date: May 14, 2015
    Applicant: Harris Corporation
    Inventor: Brian Wright
  • Patent number: 9027638
    Abstract: A method of producing hydrocarbons from a well. The method begins by injecting steam into a well. The bitumen in the formation is then heated with the injected steam, followed by ceasing the injection of steam into the well and then by soaking the bitumen with the injected steam and collecting the heated oil. Steam that has condensed is revaporized by directing RF/MW radiation to the steam allowing for more bitumen to be produced without injecting more steam. In addition, some of the steam could become superheated, wherein the temperature of the superheated steam is greater than the temperature of the steam. The bitumen is heated by the revaporized steam and the superheated steam, followed by soaking the bitumen with the revaporized steam and the superheated steam. Hydrocarbons are then produced from the well.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 15, 2011
    Date of Patent: May 12, 2015
    Assignees: ConocoPhillips Company, Harris Corporation
    Inventors: Maxine Jones Madison, Wayne Reid Dreher, Francis Eugene Parsche, Mark Alan Trautman
  • Publication number: 20150114623
    Abstract: The branching of fractures in shale formations surrounding a wellbore can be enhanced so that more rock surface is exposed in the formation and more hydrocarbon resources can be recovered using smaller quantities of fracturing fluids. The branching of the fractures can be enhanced by establishing a substantially static sub-threshold fluid pressure in a well in a geological formation, and generating a pressure pulse in the well such that the pressure pulse combined with the substantially static sub-threshold fluid pressure forms a plurality of fractures in the geological formation. An arc jet insertable into a passage in the geological formation and having an electric arc channel can be used to generate the pressure pulse.
    Type: Application
    Filed: October 31, 2014
    Publication date: April 30, 2015
    Applicant: WEST VIRGINIA HIGH TECHNOLOGY CONSORTIUM FOUNDATION
    Inventor: Thomas L. OWENS
  • Patent number: 9016367
    Abstract: A radio frequency (RF) antenna assembly to be positioned within a wellbore in a subterranean formation for hydrocarbon resource recovery may include a series of tubular conductors coupled together in end-to-end relation. Each tubular conductor may include a dual-wall conductor defining an RF antenna. The dual-wall conductor may include an outer wall and an inner wall spaced inwardly therefrom to define an outer fluid passageway. The RF antenna assembly may further include an RF transmission line extending within at least some of the tubular conductors.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: July 19, 2012
    Date of Patent: April 28, 2015
    Assignee: Harris Corporation
    Inventors: Brian Wright, Murray Hann, Keith Nugent
  • Patent number: 9004164
    Abstract: The present invention relates to a method and system for enhancing in situ upgrading of hydrocarbon by implementing an array of radio frequency antennas that can uniformly heat the hydrocarbons within a producer well pipe, so that the optimal temperatures for different hydroprocessing reactions can be achieved.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 25, 2012
    Date of Patent: April 14, 2015
    Assignees: ConocoPhillips Company, Harris Corporation
    Inventors: Wayne Reid Dreher, Joe D. Allison, Lisa Jean Patton, Victor Hernandez, Francis E. Parsche
  • Patent number: 9004163
    Abstract: The equipment for drilling and reinforcing a borehole of a well comprises a drill pipe string carrying a drill tool at its lowermost end and a downhole treatment device held on the drill pipe string for applying a liner of polymer material at the surface of the borehole. The polymer material is a fusible and/or curable material dissolved and/or emulsified and/or dispersed in drilling fluid or mud circulated through the drill pipe string and an annulus between the drill pipe string and the wall of the borehole. The treatment device is adapted to concentrate energy for fusing and/or curing the polymer material contained in the drilling fluid in a limited space at the vicinity of the wall of the borehole. The treatment device thus focuses its energy in the vicinity of the wall and allows a continuous reinforcing of the borehole simultaneously while drilling.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 3, 2009
    Date of Patent: April 14, 2015
    Assignee: Statoil Petroleum AS
    Inventor: Steinar Wasa Tverlid
  • Patent number: 8978756
    Abstract: A device for processing hydrocarbon resources in a subterranean formation having a laterally extending wellbore therein may include a radio frequency (RF) antenna configured to be positioned within the laterally extending wellbore, and at least one feedback conductor configured to be positioned along the laterally extending wellbore. The device may also include an RF circuit configured to supply RF power to the hydrocarbon resources via the RF antenna. The RF circuit may be configured to supply the RF power at a frequency tracking a resonant frequency of the RF antenna and the RF circuit and based upon the at least one feedback conductor.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: October 19, 2012
    Date of Patent: March 17, 2015
    Assignee: Harris Corporation
    Inventor: Francis E. Parsche
  • Publication number: 20150060052
    Abstract: A microwave energy tool including a sheet beam klystron that includes a tube body for carrying an electron sheet beam that has a plurality of cavities and a magnetic solenoid wound directly on the tube body.
    Type: Application
    Filed: September 3, 2014
    Publication date: March 5, 2015
    Inventor: George Caryotakis
  • Patent number: 8967248
    Abstract: A method of hydrocarbon resource recovery from a subterranean formation may include forming a plurality of spaced apart injector/producer well pairs in the subterranean formation. Each injector/producer well pair may include a laterally extending producer well and a laterally extending injector well spaced thereabove. The method may include forming an intermediate well adjacent a given injector/producer well pair, and operating a positioning actuator to position a radio frequency (RF) sensor coupled to the positioning actuator to at least one predetermined location within the intermediate well. The method may further include operating the RF sensor at the at least one predetermined location within the intermediate well to selectively sense at least one corresponding portion of the subterranean formation adjacent the given injector/producer well pair. The method may also include recovering hydrocarbon resources from the plurality of injector/producer well pairs including the given injector/producer well pair.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 23, 2011
    Date of Patent: March 3, 2015
    Assignee: Harris Corporation
    Inventors: Francis Eugene Parsche, Mark Trautman
  • Patent number: 8960285
    Abstract: A method for hydrocarbon resource recovery in a subterranean formation including a laterally extending injector well having a tubular conductor therein, and a laterally extending producer well adjacent the injector well, may include drilling outwardly from a distal end of the injector well beyond a distal end of the tubular conductor to define an extended injector well portion. The method may further include advancing a radio frequency (RF) conductor through the tubular conductor so as to extend beyond the distal end of the tubular conductor and into the extended injector well portion. The method may further include supplying RF energy into adjacent portions of the subterranean formation from the RF conductor, and recovering hydrocarbon resources utilizing the producer well.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: November 1, 2011
    Date of Patent: February 24, 2015
    Assignee: Harris Corporation
    Inventor: Francis Eugene Parsche
  • Patent number: 8960272
    Abstract: A radio frequency (RF) applicator may be rotated during positioning within a wellbore in a subterranean formation. The wellbore may have at least one bend therein. The RF applicator may include a series of tubular conductors, and a respective bendable tubular dielectric coupler rotationally interlocking opposing ends of adjacent ones of the series of tubular conductors to define a tubular antenna. The RF applicator may include at least one RF feed conductor extending within the tubular antenna and connected to the series of tubular conductors.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 13, 2012
    Date of Patent: February 24, 2015
    Assignee: Harris Corporation
    Inventors: Brian Wright, Murray Hann, Raymond Hewit