The current simple nanofluid flooding method for tertiary or enhanced oil recovery is inefficient, especially when used with low nanoparticle concentration. We have designed and produced a nanofluid of graphene-based amphiphilic nanosheets that is very effective at low concentration. Our nanosheets spontaneously approached the oil-water interface and reduced the interfacial tension in a saline environment (4 wt % NaCl and 1 wt % CaCl2), regardless of the solid surface wettability. A climbing film appeared and grew at moderate hydrodynamic condition to encapsulate the oil phase. With strong hydrodynamic power input, a solid-like interfacial film formed and was able to return to its original form even after being seriously disturbed. The film rapidly separated oil and water phases for slug-like oil displacement. The unique behavior of our nanosheet nanofluid tripled the best performance of conventional nanofluid flooding methods under similar conditions.
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|Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
|Published - 2016 7月 12
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