Navigation Links
New Danish research shows how oil gets stuck underground
Date:5/11/2009

Now, new Danish research may have come up with an explanation as to where and how North Sea oil clings to underground rocks. This explanation could turn out to be the first step on the way to developing improved oil production techniques with the intent of increasing oil production from Danish oil fields.

A research group at the Nano-Science Center, part of the Institute of Chemistry at University of Copenhagen has investigated drill cores collected from North Sea oil fields using an atomic force microscope. Their investigations show that the spaces which contain oil have totally different surface qualities than expected from our knowledge of the minerals which make up the rock. The rocks which contain oil in the Danish part of the North Sea are primarily chalk the same type of rock that the cliffs of Stevns and Mns in Denmark are made of. Assistant Professor Tue Hassenkam lead the research, whose preliminary results were published in the respected scientific publication PNAS (Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences) this week. He says that this is the first time that investigations of this type have been carried out on chalk from an oil field in the North Sea.

"Previous investigations were carried out on the surface properties of pure mineral crystals. But our investigation has shown that this chalk has a different and more complex structure" says Tue Hassenkam.

The oil bearing layers in the subsurface are reminiscent of a sponge. The oil "hides" in tiny pores and gaps and only some of the oil can be pressed out of the chalk and into the borehole by injecting water into the chalk layer. The rest is left behind as small droplets of oil surrounded by water either in small gaps in the rock or stuck to the walls of the pores. The chalk particles ought to repel oil if they act like particles of the mineral calcite, which chalk is almost 100% made up of. However the new investigations, carried out with a particularly powerful microscope, have shown that the surfaces of the pores in the chalk are partially covered in a material which oil can stick to. Ass. Prof. Hassenkam believes that the surprising behaviour of the material in the surface of the chalk can be explained by studying how the chalk was formed.

"Chalk is actually the casings of ancient algae. The algae gave their cases a type of "surface coating" to make them resistant to water. And it is probably this surface coating that we can see in action here, even 60 million years later" according to Ass. Prof. Hassenkam.

If we can manage to squeeze even a few percent more oil out of the seabed under the North Sea it could be worth millions of kroner for Denmark. Therefore Mrsk Oil and Gas AS on behalf of DUC (Dansk Un-dergrunds Consortium) along with Danish National Advanced Technology Foundation are supporting a project being carried out by Professor Susan Stipps' research group the Nano-Chalk Venture, which has been ongoing for the last two years. Tue Hassenkam originally became interested in chalk because he found the algae casings so beautiful. Today, after a year's work in front of a microscope, he is glad that his work also has a practical application. An understanding of how the oil clings to the chalk can possibly help develop a method to release it. And that will be the second part of the Nano-Chalk Venture.


'/>"/>

Contact: Tue Hassenkam
tue@nano.ku.dk
452-655-2030
University of Copenhagen
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology technology :

1. Danish Hotspot in Personalized Medicine
2. Ernst & Young Benchmarks Danish Biotech Pipeline Third in Europe
3. Research Triangle Area Health Care Collaborative Launches Bridges to Excellence(R) Initiative to Improve Quality and Lower Costs
4. The Multiple Myeloma Research Consortium (MMRC) and Proteolix Initiate Phase 2 Clinical Trial Investigating Carfilzomib for the Treatment of Multiple Myeloma
5. BioMarin Licenses Technology From Leading Cystic Fibrosis Research Laboratory at the University of California, San Francisco
6. IDM Pharma Names Dr. Jeffrey W. Sherman Chief Medical Officer and Senior Vice President of Research and Development
7. Dawson James Securities Initiates Research Coverage on CryoCor, Inc. (Nasdaq: CRYO) with a Strong Buy Rating and $6.00 Target Price
8. eResearchTechnology to Present at the Thomas Weisel Healthcare Conference 2007 on September 5th
9. The Debiopharm Life Sciences Award Goes to Dr Nusser for his Outstanding Research in Neuroscience
10. Study Published in Clinical Cancer Research Confirms Potential Of Peregrines Bavituximab Combined With Radiation In Lung Cancer
11. Dow AgroSciences and Exelixis Plant Sciences Announce Major Research Collaboration, Asset Purchase to Advance Gene Discovery and Validation
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016 /PRNewswire/ - FACIT has announced the ... biotechnology company, Propellon Therapeutics Inc. ("Propellon" or ... of a portfolio of first-in-class WDR5 inhibitors for ... as WDR5 represent an exciting class of therapies, ... medicine for cancer patients. Substantial advances have been ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... MA (PRWEB) , ... June 23, 2016 , ... ... Peel Plate® YM (Yeast and Mold) microbial test has received AOAC Research Institute ... platform of microbial tests introduced last year,” stated Bob Salter, Vice President of ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... 23, 2016   EpiBiome , a precision microbiome ... in debt financing from Silicon Valley Bank (SVB). The ... to advance its drug development efforts, as well as ... "SVB has been an incredible strategic partner to ... traditional bank would provide," said Dr. Aeron Tynes ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... 23, 2016 , ... In a new case report published today in STEM ... who developed lymphedema after being treated for breast cancer benefitted from an injection of ... dealing with this debilitating, frequent side effect of cancer treatment. , Lymphedema ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
(Date:6/2/2016)... -- The Department of Transport Management (DOTM) of ... US Dollar project, for the , Supply and ... and IT Infrastructure , to Decatur ... of Identity Management Solutions. Numerous renowned international vendors participated in ... was selected for the most compliant and innovative solution. ...
(Date:6/2/2016)... 2016 Perimeter Surveillance & Detection ... Physical Infrastructure, Support & Other Service  The ... offers comprehensive analysis of the global Border Security ... revenues of $17.98 billion in 2016. Now: ... leader in software and hardware technologies for advanced video ...
(Date:5/24/2016)... , May 24, 2016 Ampronix facilitates superior patient care by providing ...  3D medical LCD display is the latest premium product recently added to the range ... ... ... Sony 3d Imaging- LCD Medical Display- Ampronix News ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):