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Beyond SAGD. Canada’s heavy oil sands are producing and encouraging the industry to experiment with new ways to get more oil. Steam Assisted Gravity Drainage (SAGD) is the common production technology applied, but others are under development or in use.
However, there are some problems. SAGD uses lots of water and natural gas to generate steam. This is spurring research into new production forms that use fewer resources. While this editor has no direct experience with any of these efforts, he submits them to the reader for their consideration.
The Petroleum Technology Research Centre in Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada, is conducting research via Joint Implementation of Vapour Extraction (JIVE). This program is a collaborative effort between PTRC, Alberta Research Council, Saskatchewan Research Council, Nexen, Husky Energy, Canadian Natural Resources Ltd. and other heavy oil producers. The project is testing the effectiveness of a proprietary vapor extraction process, Vapex.
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