Steam Distillation Effect and Oil Quality Change During Steam Injection

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Steam distillation is an important mechanism which reduces residual oil saturation during steam injection. It may be the main recovery mechanism in steamfiooding of light oil reservoirs. As light components are distilled from the residual (initial) oil, the residuum becomes heavier. Mixing of the distilled components with the initial oil results in a lighter produced oil.A general method has been developed to compute steam distillation yield and to quantify oil quality changes during steam injection. The quantitative results are specific because the California crude data bank was used. But general principles were followed and calculations were based on information extracted from the DOE crude oil assay data bank.It was found that steam distillation data from the literature can be correlated with the steam distillation yield obtained from the DOE crude oil assays. The common basis for comparison was the equivalent normal boiling point. Blending of distilled components with the initial oil results in API gravity changes similar to those observed in several laboratory and field operations.


Type of resource text
Date created June 1991


Author Lim, Kok Thye
Primary advisor Ramey Jr., Henry J.
Degree granting institution Stanford University, Department of Petroleum Engineering


Subject School of Earth Energy & Environmental Sciences
Genre Thesis

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Lim, Kok Thye. (1991). Steam Distillation Effect and Oil Quality Change During Steam Injection. Stanford Digital Repository. Available at:


Master's Theses, Doerr School of Sustainability

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