Reservoir heterogeneity in carboniferous sandstone of the Black Warrior basin. Final report
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Although oil production in the Black Warrior basin of Alabama is declining, additional oil may be produced through improved recovery strategies, such as waterflooding, chemical injection, strategic well placement, and infill drilling. High-quality characterization of reservoirs in the Black Warrior basin is necessary to utilize advanced technology to recover additional oil and to avoid premature abandonment of fields. This report documents controls on the distribution and producibility of oil from heterogeneous Carboniferous reservoirs in the Black Warrior basin of Alabama. The first part of the report summarizes the structural and depositional evolution of the Black Warrior basin and establishes the geochemical characteristics of hydrocarbon source rocks and oil in the basin. This second part characterizes facies heterogeneity and petrologic and petrophysical properties of Carter and Millerella sandstone reservoirs. This is followed by a summary of oil production in the Black Warrior basin and an evaluation of seven improved-recovery projects in Alabama. In the final part, controls on the producibility of oil from sandstone reservoirs are discussed in terms of a scale-dependent heterogeneity classification.