The Benefits of THAI®
Recover More Oil, Produces Higher Quality Oil and Reduce Environmental Impact
Our THAI® technology has the ability to recover more resources, produce a higher quality oil and has superior economics compared to typical conventional or thermal extraction techniques used in heavy oil and bitumen resources today. Long term vision and innovation has resulted in the development of THAI® to be a step-change advance in the world of heavy oil and bitumen production.
Compared to current in-situ thermal production methods, such as CSS or SAGD, THAI® is compatible with a wider range of reservoir conditions, has superior capital and operating cost efficiencies and has less environmental impact due to a smaller surface footprint and no material usage of natural gas and water.
Favourable Recovery Amount
Conventional methods for producing heavy oil often have recovery factors less than 10%. Thermal methods such as SAGD or CSS may recovery between 20% and 50%. Our THAI® technology has been demonstarted by computer simulation and physical modeling to be as high as 80%.
Broader Reservoir Compatibility
Due to the THAI® process' well configuration and high temperatures, it can produce oil from reservoirs that are not suitable for other thermal methods. This includes thinner reservoirs and areas that have a high incident of heterogeneity such as thin shale laminations, lean zones and higher water saturation.
Flexible Recovery Options
Unlike other processes, THAI® can be used as a primary, secondary or even tertiary recovery method. Even when producing otherwise uneconomic resources or injecting new life into reservoirs already developed using alternative methods, THAI® can resurect an asset and recover more oil.
The THAI® technology is intended to be simple and efficient as technically possible. The technology was designed to use ‘off-the-shelf' equipment and facilities – making facilities quicker to build, less costly and easier to maintain.
In larger scale THAI® projects the volume of combustion gases containing a high enough residual energy value is sufficient to be used to make the project energy self-sufficient. With a variable cost for power, this adds materially to a projects' economic and environmental benefits.
There is no disputing that the THAI® process consistently produces upgraded oil. Therefore, less diluents are required to achieve pipeline specifications and less refining is necessary at the surface to transform the oil into finished products. This translates into a higher value barrel at the wellhead.
Lower Operating Costs Than Steam Based Projects
Unlike CSS and SAGD, our THAI® technology has no need to burn natural gas or to consume water. Although a nominal volume of steam can be used at the begining of the heating process, it is no longer required once air injection has begun. As a result, by eliminating water handling facilities and the variable costs associated with burning natural gas, THAI® projects require smaller capital investment and have lower operating costs than equivalent steam-based projects.
Important Environmental Benefits
THAI® has several environmental benefits when compared with traditional thermal production technologies. SAGD is a net water user; however, the water produced during the THAI® process is in fact clean enough for industrial use or immediate reinjection. To put it simply, THAI® does not consume water, but actually produces it from otherwise unsuitable sources. Additionally, the THAI® process does not use natural gas to generate steam after air injection has started.