Development of an integrated RFID-IC technology for on-line viscosity measurements in enhanced oil recovery processes

Anas M. Hassan*, M. Ayoub, M. Eissa, T. Musa, Hans Bruining, Pacelli Zitha

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)
168 Downloads (Pure)


This paper deals with on line viscosity measurements using integrated circuit technology, and is building on a previous paper on the use radio frequency identifier (RFID) technology for determining dielectric coefficients. It is asserted that the progress in RFID technology and integrated circuits, in particular in micro–electro–mechanical system (MEMS) makes it possible to combine them to perform physico-chemical property measurements using devices on centimeter scale. It can even be expected that these devices can be made increasingly smaller. An important property of interest is the viscosity, in this specific case, for the use of Arabic gum in enhanced oil recovery. Arabic gum, is an environmentally acceptable natural product. Natural-polymer solutions 1000 [ppm] are more viscous and therefore more efficient oil displacement agents. They require less invested exergy than non-viscosified water to recover oil. However, polymers, in particular environmentally acceptable natural-polymers (e.g., Guar–Arabic gum) available in large quantities in India and Sudan, are susceptible to microbial degradation. It is therefore important to monitor its quality at the injection and production side for real-time quality control. Natural-polymers based on plant products are promising EOR agents. They may have a lower environmental footprint because of the biodegradability. To provide a proof of concept, we use a state of the art acoustic wave sensor (AWS), which can determine acoustic viscosities. It is asserted that RFID technology can be used to record the acoustic wave signal (SenGenuity vismart acoustic wave Sensor AWS) to determine the viscosity at some distance (meters) away from the measurement device. A calibration with solutions of known viscosity behavior (i.e., Glycerol) can be used to relate the acoustic viscosity to the dynamic viscosity. We can calibrate the acoustic wave sensor using Guar–Arabic gum solutions to measurements with the Anton Paar viscometer (MCR-302). For the glycerol solution we also compare to reported literature data. The Newtonian viscosity measurements of the Paar density meter, and the literature values agree within a few percent. These favorable comparisons, are an important step in developing a methodology that allows cutting edge RFID-IC technology for real-time non-contact monitoring of viscosity degradation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2605-2612
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Petroleum Exploration and Production Technology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2019


  • Acoustic wave sensor (AWS)
  • Enhanced oil Recovery (EOR)
  • Integrated circuit (IC)
  • Natural-polymer (Guar–Arabic gum) solution
  • RFID technology
  • Viscosity degradation


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