JRT’s technology achieves deep formation electromagnetic wave energy penetration and can be focused within specific volumes. It is superior to steam because it does not have uplift and is capable of transferring heat in very low permeability formations at depths which make steam difficult to apply. Specific radio frequencies are chosen at a given site to: allow breakage of the capillary bonding holding oil in the water/rock matrix, selectively heat hydrocarbons, reduce oil viscosity, and autogentically create pressure drive from light end hydrocarbon gases and water vapor toward recovery wells.
When used to extract gas from shale, radio frequency waves create heat penetration within shales resulting in volumetric microporosity and subsequent release of gas through desorption mechanisms such as through the expected weakening or destruction of Van der Waals bonding between rock and gas molecules by radio frequency energy. Microporosity results from the thermal expansion of connate water which leads to microfracturing. RF induced chemical bond breaking liberates both gas and oil. The intricate network of microfracturing resulting from liberation of connate water thereby eliminates the use of proppants used in conventional hydrofracturing methods currently.
JRT’s patented energy extraction technology for oil and gas recovery consists of a radiofrequency generator connected by cable to specially designed antennae. The antennae are placed in an array of boreholes drilled to maximize energy delivery to a specific area/volume in a formation. RF energy maintains a significant advantage over conventional thermal techniques (e.g., steam, resistive or conductive heating) in that the energy is much more efficiently delivered through the formation (host) to the target (petroleum). RF energy propagates evenly throughout the host, be it solids, liquids or gases thereby minimizing energy absorption by the host, a significant source of energy loss in rock using conventional heating methods.
The unique ability of RF energy to preferentially heat the target, organic compounds such as petroleum, over the host, rock or other inorganic materials, opens up many new applications of this technology in oil and gas extraction:
- To enhance liquid mobility by reducing viscosity;
- To desorb gas held in micro-pores within tight formations;
- To induce micro-fracturing in a rock formation necessary to extract oil or gas in economically recoverable quantities; and
- To fractionate crude oil within the formation enabling sequenced recovery of lighter or heavier product fractions at the wellhead.
No water, chemicals, proppants, or hydrofracking methods are required with JRT’s extraction technology. In comparison to current technologies, RF reduces resource use, waste generation, environmental risks, stakeholder opposition, and cost.
The elimination of water alone as a prerequisite to hydrofracking opens the potential for extraction of extensive unconventional reserves in many arid climates of the world where production is currently not economically viable due to the scarcity and value of water as a vital life-sustaining resource. The combined benefits of RF to both the extraction and recovery process pose substantial economic, environmental and competitive advantages to the petroleum and energy industries globally. The recent shift in focus to development of unconventional oil and gas reserves globally creates an enormous global market potential for JRT’s RF technology. The economic, environmental and social benefits provided by JRT’s RF technology over conventional extraction methods also satisfy the demands of the investment, regulatory and public communities for more sustainable technologies in meeting global energy demands, a vital component to the commercial marketability of the technology.