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Time sequenced heating of multiple layers in a hydrocarbon containing formation

United States Patent

7,635,023
December 22, 2009
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
Oak Ridge National Laboratory - Visit the Partnerships Directorate Website
A method for treating a hydrocarbon containing formation may include providing heat to a first hydrocarbon layer in the formation from a first heater located in an opening in the formation. The opening and the first heater may have a horizontal or inclined portion located in the first hydrocarbon layer and at least one connecting portion extending between the horizontal or inclined portion and the surface. Isolation material is placed in the opening such that the isolation material partially isolates the layer in which the horizontal or inclined portion of the first heater is located. An additional horizontal or inclined opening portion that extends from at least one of the connecting portions of the opening is formed in a second hydrocarbon layer. A second heater to provide heat the second hydrocarbon formation is placed in the additional substantially horizontal opening portion.
Goldberg; Bernard (Houston, TX), Hale; Arthur Herman (Houston, TX), Miller; David Scott (Katy, TX), Vinegar; Harold J. (Bellaire, TX)
Shell Oil Company (Houston, TX)
11/ 788,859
20080173450
April 20, 2007
GOVERNMENT INTEREST The Government has certain rights in this invention pursuant to Agreement No. ERD-05-2516 between UT-Battelle, LLC, operating under prime contract No. DE-ACO5-00OR22725 for the US Department of Energy and Shell Exploration and Production Company. The Government has certain rights in the invention pursuant to Agreement No. SD 10634 between Sandia National Laboratories and Shell Exploration and Production Company.