Abstract

Short- and long-term ground deformation at the cyclic steam stimulation (CSS) enhanced oil recovery sites in the Cold Lake region of Alberta, Canada, was measured with RADARSAT-2 differential interferometric synthetic aperture radar (DInSAR) during 2011–2016. The interferometric processing of 84 high-resolution spotlight images revealed extensive short-term ground uplift and subsidence greater than 15 cm over the 24-day satellite revisit cycle. Time-series analysis based on the multidimensional small baseline subset (MSBAS) methodology demonstrated that while the predominant deformation signal is cyclical in nature, a long-term subsidence and uplift with maximum deformation rates greater than 5 cm/year is also present. These measurements suggest that CSS injection and production operations result in the long-term semipermanent deformation in the area of reservoir operations, and that the response to injection and extraction can differ from the previous cycles.

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