Heterogeneity consideration in centrifuge experiments and simulations for capillary pressure curve measurements

Zhou, Guming (2022) Heterogeneity consideration in centrifuge experiments and simulations for capillary pressure curve measurements. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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Capillary pressure curves are one of the most important inputs for reservoir characterization and modelling in oil and gas industry. Using centrifuge experiments for capillary pressure measurements is an efficient method for obtaining such curves. With the rapid development of modelling methods for centrifuge experiments, a challenge is now faced by researchers that the assumption of a one-dimensional and homogeneous core is required. The major objective of this research is to investigate the impacts of core-scale heterogeneity on phase saturation predictions by using a centrifuge simulation method that allows a two-dimensional fluid flow in the core. The streamline tracing method that considers capillary pressure numerically is applied to visualize and quantify effects of heterogeneity. Significant differences in phase saturation predictions have been observed between homogeneous and heterogeneous cores. For example, when a low permeability area is present in a core plug during a drainage centrifuge simulation, less wetting phase is displaced at some capillary pressure condition as compared to a homogeneous/randomly distributed core. Therefore, higher average saturations can be obtained and the maximum mean squared error of it is about 0.0013. A capillary pressure curve with a positive bias can be calculated and taken as an input for reservoir simulation to describe the distribution of reservoir fluids and the fluids contacts. When a high permeability area is present, the maximum mean squared error of the deviated saturation is 0.0004. This study revealed that it is necessary to consider core-scale heterogeneity in the modelling of centrifuge experiments since an inaccurate capillary pressure curve can produce results with considerable errors in reservoir simulations.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/15715
Item ID: 15715
Additional Information: Includes bibliographical references (pages 145-154)
Keywords: centrifuge measurement of capillary pressure curves, core heterogeneity, streamline tracing method, phase saturation prediction
Department(s): Engineering and Applied Science, Faculty of
Date: February 2022
Date Type: Submission
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): https://doi.org/10.48336/NYXA-VD06
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Offshore oil industry; Petroleum engineering; Centrifuges—Experiments; Hydrocarbon reservoirs; Ecological heterogeneity

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