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The AAPG/Datapages Combined Publications Database

AAPG Bulletin


Volume: 65 (1981)

Issue: 5. (May)

First Page: 1016

Last Page: 1016

Title: Oil Recovery from Aquifer Beneath Refinery: ABSTRACT

Author(s): Jonathan P. Snell

Article Type: Meeting abstract


The Sun Oil Co. refinery on the Arkansas River in Tulsa, Oklahoma, is underlain by a pool of hydrocarbons up to 6 ft (2 m) thick that is floating on the ground water and has an estimated volume of over 600,000 bbl. These oils have an API gravity range of 20 to 60°. The source is thought to be leaks and spills during the 50+ years of refinery operation.

An active recovery system is now in operation using a two-pump-per-well system in which one pump removes water, creating a cone of depression which brings the floating hydrocarbons to the well. From there it is removed by the second pump.

This paper describes the alluvial aquifer, oil detection techniques, recovery methods, and the flow of oil and water through the alluvium.

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Copyright 1997 American Association of Petroleum Geologists