Dr. Sam Sarem

Dr. A.M. Sam Sarem is the president of the Improved Petroleum Recovery Consultant. As a seasoned scientist, lecturer, author, engineer, consultant, and manager in the Petroleum industry, and after-dinner speaker, he can benefit you and your company by his over 40 years of major oil company & university experience in administration, expense performance control, research, field work, technical service and teaching. His technical experience has resulted in over 30 patents, over 20 Technical Publications and 28 semester-courses of teaching. His areas of technical expertise over the years have included: Public Speaking and Toast mastering, Reservoir Characterization, Natural Gas Engineering, Reservoir Engineering, Transient Well Testing, Enhanced Oil Recovery (Miscible, Caustic, Steam), Injection Water Clarification, Infill Drilling Well Placement, Reservoir Modeling, Coal Bed Methane Reservoir Engineering, and Phase Behavior of Complex Hydrocarbon Mixtures Near the Critical Point.

Client List (click here)

About Dr. A. M. Sam Sarem

An SPE (Society of Petroleum Engineers) Distinguished Member, 1997-98 chairman of SPE Los Angeles Basin Section, past SPE Distinguished Lecturer, past SPE Distinguished Author, 1999-2000 President of the OCEC (Orange County Engineering Council), Fellow of the Institute for Advancement of Engineering, Trouble Shooter for West Coast PTTC, Lecturer at USC Petroleum Program, president of Improved Petroleum Recovery Consultants, over 40 years of major oil company experience in research, administration and technology sales, author of over 20 technical publications and over 30 patents and presenter of over 100 technical talks worldwide with speaking knowledge of Russian, French, Spanish, German, Arabic and fluency in English and Farsi. Winner of many public speaking awards in Toastmasters International.

His current technical expertise include:

Assistance in Small Oil Co technical management and trouble shooting, Teaching Natural Gas Engineering, Gas Condensate and Volatile Oil Reservoir Engineering, Reservoir Characterization, Transient Well Testing, Enhanced Oil Recovery (CO2, Caustic, Steam), Waterflood Injection Water Clarification, Injection Profile Improvement, low-cost WOR Control in Marginal Stripper Wells, Drag Reduction in Oil and Water Pipelines.



Consulted with UNOCAL and a number of Independents on reservoir engineering, injection and production wells profile control, Steam, CO2 and MCCF(Caustic-Silicate-Calcium)EOR processes, reservoir characterization, oscillatory horizontal well drilling and pressure transient testing. Was NIPER/DOE invited speaker at: 1) the DOE Chemical EOR Workshop, 2) the DOE-/IPAA on "Low Cost Options to Keep Marginal Wells Operating". Prepared and submitted one solicited and one unsolicited DOE cost sharing proposal. Consulted with Torch for the purchase of Unocal's California oil field properties. Participated in presenting a PTTC Workshop on Natural Gas Processing, Treating and Handling. Taught several graduate and undergraduate classes at USC, PTTC, etc including Natural Gas Engineering, Well Stimulation and Well Profile Control. 1996 Program Co-Chairman of SPE Western Regional Meeting, 1997-98 Chairman of SPE Los Angeles Basin Section and 1998-99 president-elect of Orange County Engineering Council

UNOCAL, Brea, CA 1964 - 1993

Energy Resources Technology Group
Production & Development Staff Consultant 1990 - 1993
Consultant for five production & development technology managerial groups (Reservoir Development and Analysis, Reservoir Characterization, Drilling & Stimulation, Production chemistry and Improved Recovery Methods). Assisting the five managerial groups in seismic research and analysis department to shift research focus from exploration to production development. Project Manager for two enhanced recovery field applications. Coordinator for several annual technology transfer projects. Taught various classes at USC, etc.
Organized and coordinated many company-wide technology transfer seminars to disseminate the state of the art technology from Research to Operations.
Represented UNOCAL in leveraged university and institute research programs.
Managed the reservoir characterization and the acquisition of data for the design of the field-wide application of the Mobility Controlled Caustic Flood (MCCF). Among objective achieved were: 1)more ­than-expected improvement of injection profile in the test well by 445%, 2)detection of a huge directional permeability by pulse testing. 3)acquirement of all design parameters for the field-wide.
Managed pilot test of the MCCF process in a second field in which my environmentally friendly precipitate recycle patented technique was successfully tested with financial assistance of Dow chemicals which donated $60,000.00 worth of test chemicals. Results, including the oil recovery response, was very encouraging.
Using the reservoir, geologic and 3D seismic data along with a DOE infill drilling model, I, an Operations engineer and SSI, determined the 'optimum' locations for infill well which, after drilling, corroborated our predictions. The results were jointly presented at the 1992 SPE China Meeting.
Invented, jointly with a geologist, a geophysicist and a drilling engineer, a process for oscillatory horizontal drilling using seismic imaging while drilling, which was patented in 1993 and promises to be revolutionary in improving the horizontal drilling success ratio in non-communicating layered reservoirs.
Invented a novel enhanced imbibition oil recovery process that ,according to our lab tests, drastically improves the oil recovery in fractured reservoirs containing heavy oil such as the prolific, but poorly produced, Pt. Pedernales reservoir. This process, which was patented in 1993, could economically recover many million barrels of oil which may otherwise be by-passed. The field test is pending.

Science & Technology Division, Brea, CA
Fred L. Hartley Research Center

Production Research Consultant 1988 - 1990
Consultant for five Production Research groups (Reservoir Engineering, Enhanced Recovery, Ocean & Arctic Engineering, Drilling, and Well Stimulation & Production). Coordination of two Transient Well Testing Wirelines. Computer Coordinator for Production Research departmental.

Enhanced interdisciplinary work leading to better reservoir description resulting in much better reservoir management and improved operational profitability.

Coordinated, designed, and analyzed transient well tests, such as pulse testing, using our in-house wireline units at a cost saving of around $4,000.00 per day in equipment and personnel cost while providing TLC and coaching of operations engineers for additional improved profitability through better field operations.

Visited numerous field offices to present seminars for technology sales and transfer from Research to Operations and better understanding of Operations' needs to guide research projects.

Promoted the field application of research findings including the application of water shut-off agents and the in-depth mobility control by the MCCF process for improved oil recovery.

Supervisor, Reservoir Engineering Group 1985 - 1988
Managed the development of highly versatile software package called ASTRO, which contributed, along with other software's, to acknowledged multi-million dollar per year profit improvement.

Solicited, received and supervised the annual delivery of record breaking multi-million dollar technical service to Operations, resulting in huge acknowledged profit improvements for the Company such as the one they realized in U.K.

Developed expertise of our young engineers through technical society involvement , attendance at continuing education schools and special training.

Provided reservoir engineering service and technology sales to all worldwide offices of UNOCAL at bargain prices.

Union Oil Research Center, Brea, CA

Senior Research Associate 1982 - 1985
While acting as advisor and mentor to the junior members of the Wellbore Mechanics Group, I also conducted applied research and performed technical service in Well Testing, Hydraulic Fracturing, Gravel Packing, Water Shutoff in production wells and Drag Reduction in Pipelines. I also served as UNOCAL's expert on Well Testing.

Purchased an almost new $650,000.00 wireline unit called Super Tester for a mere $65,000.00 and used it along with another unit that we designed in-house for reservoir characterization pulse testing at a cost saving of 2-4 million dollars.

Used the wireline units as a teaching tool for our Operations engineers so that they could better understand their reservoirs for improving their operation efficiencies.

Alleviated the Operations' problem with hydrofracing of South Belridge Diatomite which resulted in keeping the field by company and subsequent 40+ successful hydrofracs resulting in a huge profit.

To gain favorable negotiating treatment from the Norwegian Government, for UNOCAL I gave two one week courses on well testing in Stavanger at UNOCAL's expense to some 70 engineers.

Research Associate 1978 - 1982
Conducted research and provided technical service in the Wellbore Mechanics Group. Areas of emphasis included two phase flow in pipes, hydraulic fracturing, gravel packing, application of resin coated sand (super sand), high temperature well acidizing (in situ formation of HC1 & HF), clay stabilization, well damage diagnosis, application of tiltmeter in fracture orientation, perforation, and pressure transient tests.

Designed an MCCF process for the Tuymaza Oil Field in Bashkaria in siberia about 1000 miles east of Moscow, which paved the way for the later negotiations with Russians about Azerbaiijan venture.

Senior Research Engineer 1964 - 1978
Served as Project Manager for research and pilot application of polymer flooding and mobility controlled caustic flooding (MCCF). Also managed research and field application of drag reduction in pipeline flow.

Received a number of patents which were later used for profitability including a number of patents on various aspects of the MCCF process and the manufacture of polymer at well site to reduce the cost of polymer flooding which were field tested successfully in various oil fields.

The MCCF process in Orcutt Hill field in California produced 400,000 barrels of incremental oil at a chemical cost of $268,000.00, or less than $1.00/Barrel incremental oil.


Research Engineer
Conducted research and technical service on fluid flow in porous media and phase behavior of hydrocarbons.

Designed and built a huge PVT lab operating to 20,000 psi pressure and -40 to 350 deg F and used it to develop better correlations for predicting the behavior of gas condensate and volatile oil reservoirs.

Designed and built relative permeability apparatus for research and routine work reducing the service company charges by $300.00 per sample. Developed mathematical equations for a very-simple-to-run three phase unsteady state relative permeability measurement


University of Oklahoma, Norman, Oklahoma
Ph.D. in Engineering Science, 1964
University of Tulsa, Tulsa, Oklahoma
MS in Petroleum Engineering, 1956
BS in Petroleum Engineering, 1954
Many Computer and Management Short Courses


Registered Professional Engineer in Oklahoma
Life Member, Society of Petroleum Engineers
1997-98 Chairman of Los Angeles Basin Section of SPE
Kapitsa Gold Medal of Honor of the Russian Academy of Natural Sciences
Past Member, New York Academy of Science
Fellow, Institute for Advancement of Engineering
Past member and V. P., Los Angeles Council of Engineers and Scientists
1999-2000 President of Orange County Engineering Council
Past member, ACS
Past member, AICHE
Member, Iranian Chemical Engineering Society
Past member, American Institute of Physics
Distinguished Lecturer for SPE, 1983/84
Distinguished Author for JPT, March 1989
SPE/Distinguished Member 1992
Winner, Division Public Speaking Contest of Toastmasters International
As Governor of Founder's District Div. A Toastmasters, Founded two new Toastmasters Clubs
Listed in the Who's Who in the West
Who's Who in America, American Men & Women of Science

Partial Client List

The Gas Company
Armstrong Petroleum
The Termo Company
Keystone Oil
USC Petroleum Engineering
Stanford Petroleum Engineering
Texas University Petroleum Engineering
Babson & Shepard
Dow Chemical
Tulsa University Petroleum Engineering
Oklahoma University Petroleum Engineering
Society of Petroleum Engineers
Philadelphia-Quartz Corporation
St. James Oil Corporation
Echometer Company
Duke Engineering & Services

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22605 E. La Palma Avenue, Suite 520
Yorba Linda, California 92687