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Abstract: Case Studies Using Reservoir Characterization to Improve Remediation System Design and Operation

BUST, VIVIAN, Consulting Geologist, Irvine, CA 

Improved remediation system design and operation resulted from effectively using reservoir characterization to identify hydraulic flow units and connectivity of sediments in hydrocarbon-affected aquifer-aquitard systems. Reservoir characterization methods used in petroleum exploration and production were applied to near-surface sedimentary sequences to describe the subsurface hydrogeologic setting. The methods used included continuous coring, detailed core description, routine and special core analyses, analog sedimentary environments of deposition, well testing, simulation and development of operating and surveillance plans. The objective of this approach was to better quantify aquifer storage and flow properties, identify fluid migration pathways and permeability barriers, develop deterministic geologic / property models and more effectively evaluate remediation design alternatives and operating scenarios. Cost savings for capital equipment, operations and monitoring resulted from using site-specific hydrogeologic properties in remediation system design.

This paper will discuss remediation case histories of sites located in Southern California that include: 1) life-cycle design of a multi-technology remediation system and network of dual-completion wells that were installed simultaneously during construction of a 14-story office building and 8-story parking structure; 2) site-specific considerations in evaluation of in-situ bioremediation and cyclic steam injection remediation alternatives; 3) using stratigraphy in a strategic way for design and installation of a french drain; and 4) planning, drilling and completion of a horizontal remediation well for removal of floating product in thin-bedded sands directly overlying fractured bedrock.

AAPG Search and Discovery Article #90911©2000 AAPG Pacific Section and Western Region Society of Petroleum Engineers, Long Beach, California