--> --> Abstract: Aquifer Architecture of the Kern River, Chanac and Santa Margarita Formations in the Kern River Oil Field, California, by M. G. Coburn and J. M. Gillespie; #90945 (1997).

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Abstract: Aquifer Architecture of the Kern River, Chanac and Santa Margarita Formations in the Kern River Oil Field, California

COBURN, MICHAEL G.,

and J. M. GILLESPIE

The Kern River oil field, discovered in 1899, is a giant oil field with approximately four billion barrels of oil in place. Today, steamed oil recovery processes are used to stimulate production and improve recovery of the extremely viscous oil. The presence of free water in the producing zones of the Kern River Formation adversely affects oil production and field operations by reducing the efficiency of steam floods and by generating the need for costly water disposal systems. A thorough knowledge of the aquifer architecture of the field is necessary to facilitate enhanced oil recovery operations in the Kern River Formation and to assess the problems caused by produced water disposal in the Chanac and Santa Margarita Formations.

In this study, data from open hole formation pressure test logs and maps of the potentiometric surfaces within the various oil-producing and water disposal zones in the field were used to determine the hydraulic connectivity of the various formations within the field. The principal aquifer in the Kern River Field is an unconfined aquifer comprised of the lower Kern River and upper Chanac Formation. This aquifer is overlain by several perched aquifers within the upper Kern River Formation. Underlying the unconfined aquifer are several confined aquifers in the lower Chanac and Santa Margarita Formations which do not appear to be hydraulically connected to the unconfined aquifer. The hydraulic connection between the upper Chanac and lower Kern River Formations indicate that the current practice of disposing produced water within the upper Chanac Formation is detrimental to oil production.

Search and Discovery Article #90945©1997 AAPG Pacific Section Meeting, Bakersfield, California