Lost circulation mitigation using modified enzyme induced calcite precipitation technique

Zeeshan Tariq, Mohamed Mahmoud, Manar Alahmari, Mohamad Bataweel, Abdul Mohsen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


Circulation loss is a very common and undesirable non-productive time (NPT) event that happens during the oil and gas well drilling operations. Many loss circulation materials (LCM) have been formulated and implemented in the process of gas and oil wells drilling to minimize or mitigate this problem. In-situ calcite precipitation in effective pores can restrict the movement of the water flow between the grains by forming bridges. In this study, different mixes of Enzyme-induced calcite precipitation (EICP) solution are studied and tested in the laboratory to mitigate lost circulation problem. EICP solution is primarily composed of urea, calcium chloride, magnesium chloride, Xanthan Gum, and urease enzyme. Different concentrations and compositions of reagents were tested. The properties of the created precipitates were examined through different techniques such as X-ray diffraction analysis (XRD), scanning electron microscopy (SEM), and thermogravimetric analysis (TGA). The combination that produced the highest amount of thermally stable calcite with a minimal amount of aragonite, along with the highest precipitation efficiency was further selected for lost circulation application. A solution containing 1M Urea, 0.9M CaCl2, 0.1M MgCl2, 1 g/L Xanthan Gum, and 3 g/L urease was considered as an optimum combination for an EICP process. Lost circulation experiments were carried out in core flooding experiments on a high permeable Indian Limestone sample at room and elevated temperature conditions with the optimum combination of EICP reagents. The permeability of the samples was measured before and after the treatment. Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) scan was also run before and after the treatment to determine the pore size redistribution. Results showed that the permeability of the samples was reduced by 99%, NMR results showed that the porosity of the samples was also reduced by 20%.
Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of Petroleum Science and Engineering
StatePublished - Mar 1 2022
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geotechnical Engineering and Engineering Geology
  • Fuel Technology


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