Swelling of Shales by Supercritical Carbon Dioxide and Its Relationship to Sorption.
ABSTRACT: Shale gas is a promising energy source offering additional energy security over concerns of fossil fuel depletion. Injecting CO2 into depleted shale gas reservoirs might provide a feasible solution for CO2 storage and enhanced gas recovery. However, shale strain caused by the CO2 injection as well as CO2 sequestration in the reservoir needs to be considered during shale gas production. For this purpose, this paper examines the adsorption capacities, CO2-induced swelling, and He-induced strain of shales at 0-16 MPa and 35-75 °C. The maximum excess adsorption at different temperatures correlated with the bulk phase density: as the CO2 temperature increased, the maximum excess adsorption density decreased. The density of the adsorbed phase, obtained using the Dubinin-Radushkevich model, was used to fit the excess adsorption data. At low pressure, the CO2-induced strain on shale was caused by the gas adsorption, whereas at high pressure, it was caused by gas pressure. The absolute adsorption linearly correlated with the adsorption-induced strain.
Project description:In this work, we use grand canonical Monte Carlo (GCMC) simulation to study methane adsorption in various clay nanopores and analyze different approaches to characterize the absolute adsorption. As an important constituent of shale, clay minerals can have significant amount of nanopores, which greatly contribute to the gas-in-place in shale. In previous works, absolute adsorption is often calculated from the excess adsorption and bulk liquid phase density of absorbate. We find that methane adsorbed phase density keeps increasing with pressure up to 80?MPa. Even with updated adsorbed phase density from GCMC, there is a significant error in absolute adsorption calculation. Thus, we propose to use the excess adsorption and adsorbed phase volume to calculate absolute adsorption and reduce the discrepancy to less than 3% at high pressure conditions. We also find that the supercritical Dubinin-Radushkevich (SDR) fitting method which is commonly used in experiments to convert the excess adsorption to absolute adsorption may not have a solid physical foundation for methane adsorption. The methane excess and absolute adsorptions per specific surface area are similar for different clay minerals in line with previous experimental data. In mesopores, the excess and absolute adsorptions per specific surface area become insensitive to pore size. Our work should provide important fundamental understandings and insights into accurate estimation of gas-in-place in shale reservoirs.
Project description:Shale gas has attracted increasing attention as a potential alternative gas in recent years. Because a large fraction of gas in shale formation is in an adsorbed state, knowledge of the supercritical methane adsorption behavior on shales is fundamental for gas-in-place predictions and optimum gas recovery. A practical model with rigorous physical significance is necessary to describe the methane adsorption behavior at high pressures and high temperatures on shales. In this study, methane adsorption experiments were carried out on three Lower Silurian Longmaxi shale samples from the Sichuan Basin, South China, at pressures of up to 30 MPa and temperatures of 40, 60, 80, and 100 °C. The simplified local density/Elliott-Suresh-Donohue model was adopted to fit the experimental data in this study and the published methane adsorption data. The results demonstrate that this model is suitable to represent the adsorption data from the experiments and literature for a wide range of temperatures and pressures, and the average absolute deviation is within 10%. The methane adsorption capacity of the Longmaxi shale exhibited a strong linear positive correlation with the total organic carbon content and a linear negative correlation with increasing temperature. The rate of decrease in the methane adsorption capacity with swing temperature increased with the total organic carbon content, indicating that the organic matter is sensitive to temperature.
Project description:Enhanced recovery of shale gas with CO2 injection has attracted extensive attention as it combines the advantages of improved efficiency of shale gas recovery and reduced greenhouse gas emissions via CO2 geological sequestration. On the other hand, the microscopic mechanism of enhanced shale gas recovery with CO2 injection and the influence of the subsurface water confined in the shale nanopores remain ambiguous. Here, we use grand canonical Monte Carlo (GCMC) simulations to investigate the effect of moisture on the shale gas recovery and CO2 sequestration by calculating the adsorption of CH4 and CO2 in dry and moist kerogen slit pores. Simulation results indicate that water accumulates in the form of clusters in the middle of the kerogen slit pore. Formation of water clusters in kerogen slit pores reduces pore filling by methane molecules, resulting in a decrease in the methane sorption capacity. For the sorption of CH4/CO2 binary mixtures in kerogen slit pores, the CH4 sorption capacity decreases as the moisture content increases, whereas the effect of moisture on CO2 sorption capacity is related to its mole fraction in the CH4/CO2 binary mixture. Furthermore, we propose a reference route for shale gas recovery and find that the pressure drawdown and CO2 injection exhibit different mechanisms for gas recovery. Pressure drawdown mainly extracts the CH4 molecules distributed in the middle of kerogen slit pores, while CO2 injection recovers CH4 molecules from the adsorption layer. When the water content increases, the recovery ratio of the pressure drawdown declines, while that of CO2 injection increases, especially in the first stage of CO2 injection. The CO2 sequestration efficiency is higher under higher water content. These findings provide the theoretical foundation for optimization of the shale gas recovery process, as well as effective CO2 sequestration in depleted gas reservoirs.
Project description:Hydraulic fracturing is widely applied for economical gas production from shale reservoirs. Still, the swelling of the clay micro/nano pores due to retained fluid from hydraulic fracturing causes a gradual reduction of gas production. Four different gas-bearing shale samples with different mineralogical characteristics were investigated to study the expected shale swelling and reduction in gas permeability due to hydraulic fracturing. To simulate shale softening, these shale samples were immersed in deionized (DI) water heated to 100 °C temperature and subjected to 8 MPa pressure in a laboratory reactor for 72 hours to simulate shale softening. The low-temperature nitrogen adsorption and density measurements were performed on the original and treated shale to determine the changes in micro and nano pore structure. The micro and nano pore structures changed, and the porosity decreased after shale treatment. The porosity decreased by 4% for clayey shale, while for well-cemented shale the porosity only decreased by 0.52%. The findings showed that the initial mineralogical composition of shale plays a significant role in the change of micro and nano pores and the pore structure alteration due to retained fluid from hydraulic fracturing. A pore network model is used to simulate the permeability of shale used in this study. To define pore structure properties, specific factors such as porosity, pore size, pore throat distribution, and coordination number were used. Furthermore, the anisotropy characteristics of shale were integrated into the model via a coordination number ratio. Finally, the change in permeability due to shale softening was determined and compared with untreated with the progress of shale softening. The simulation showed that the permeability of Longmaxi shale could decrease from 3.82E-16 m2 to 4.71E-17 m<sup>2</sup> after treatment.
Project description:Coalbed methane (CBM) and shale gas become two most important unconventional natural gas resources in US. The fractal dimension, known as the degree of self-similarity or irregularity, is an important parameter to quantitatively characterize gas storage capacity and gas transport properties in pores of rock matrix. In this study, two coal and two shale samples were evaluated to estimate fractal dimensions using combined small angle X-ray scattering (SAXS), small angle neutron scattering (SANS) and low-pressure N2 adsorption techniques. The results show that surface fractal dimension D s of inaccessible pores is greater than that for total pores based on SANS results for all four tested samples. D s of accessible pores estimated by N2 desorption is greater than that for N2 adsorption for each linear section of each tested sample. Based on in situ SANS results, D s slightly decreases with increasing argon injecting pressure for San Juan coal. D s decreases with increasing methane and CO2 injecting pressure for samples with high D s . However, D s significantly increases when CO2 became liquid phase for samples with low D s . Furthermore, D s almost didn't change after methane and argon penetrations for all these samples except Marcellus outcrop shale.
Project description:Adsorbed methane is an important component of shale gas. Shale generally contains a certain amount of primary water, and isothermal adsorption experiments on wet samples show that water inhibits methane adsorption. Researches on methane adsorption mainly focus on the conditions of low pressure and water content. In this study, a hybrid GCMC-MD simulation method is proposed to study methane adsorption characteristics under high pressure and water content in pores of different sizes. This method can obtain the bulk pressure of the system while ensuring the simultaneous movement of methane and water molecules, and has high efficiency and reliability. It is found that the existence of water does not change the morphology of excess isotherm, and the relative decrease of adsorption capacity due to the existence of water is not sensitive to temperature. In ?3 nm pores, water molecules form water clusters and partially occupy wall adsorption sites, and the adsorption amount decreases linearly with increasing water saturation. In the 5 nm wide pore with 40% water saturation, water films formed and methane adsorption is strongly suppressed. It is expected these findings could provide guidance for the evaluation of the amount of adsorbed methane with primary water.
Project description:The adsorption behavior and the mechanism of a CO<sub>2</sub>/CH<sub>4</sub> mixture in shale organic matter play significant roles to predict the carbon dioxide sequestration with enhanced gas recovery (CS-EGR) in shale reservoirs. In the present work, the adsorption performance and the mechanism of a CO<sub>2</sub>/CH<sub>4</sub> binary mixture in realistic shale kerogen were explored by employing grand canonical Monte Carlo (GCMC) and molecular dynamics (MD) simulations. Specifically, the effects of shale organic type and maturity, temperature, pressure, and moisture content on pure CH<sub>4</sub> and the competitive adsorption performance of a CO<sub>2</sub>/CH<sub>4</sub> mixture were investigated. It was found that pressure and temperature have a significant influence on both the adsorption capacity and the selectivity of CO<sub>2</sub>/CH<sub>4</sub>. The simulated results also show that the adsorption capacities of CO<sub>2</sub>/CH<sub>4</sub> increase with the maturity level of kerogen. Type II-D kerogen exhibits an obvious superiority in the adsorption capacity of CH<sub>4</sub> and CO<sub>2</sub> compared with other type II kerogen. In addition, the adsorption capacities of CO<sub>2</sub> and CH<sub>4</sub> are significantly suppressed in moist kerogen due to the strong adsorption strength of H<sub>2</sub>O molecules on the kerogen surface. Furthermore, to characterize realistic kerogen pore structure, a slit-like kerogen nanopore was constructed. It was observed that the kerogen nanopore plays an important role in determining the potential of CO<sub>2</sub> subsurface sequestration in shale reservoirs. With the increase in nanopore size, a transition of the dominated gas adsorption mechanism from micropore filling to monolayer adsorption on the surface due to confinement effects was found. The results obtained in this study could be helpful to estimate original gas-in-place and evaluate carbon dioxide sequestration capacity in a shale matrix.
Project description:Gas transport in unconventional shale strata is a multi-mechanism-coupling process that is different from the process observed in conventional reservoirs. In micro fractures which are inborn or induced by hydraulic stimulation, viscous flow dominates. And gas surface diffusion and gas desorption should be further considered in organic nano pores. Also, the Klinkenberg effect should be considered when dealing with the gas transport problem. In addition, following two factors can play significant roles under certain circumstances but have not received enough attention in previous models. During pressure depletion, gas viscosity will change with Knudsen number; and pore radius will increase when the adsorption gas desorbs from the pore wall. In this paper, a comprehensive mathematical model that incorporates all known mechanisms for simulating gas flow in shale strata is presented. The objective of this study was to provide a more accurate reservoir model for simulation based on the flow mechanisms in the pore scale and formation geometry. Complex mechanisms, including viscous flow, Knudsen diffusion, slip flow, and desorption, are optionally integrated into different continua in the model. Sensitivity analysis was conducted to evaluate the effect of different mechanisms on the gas production. The results showed that adsorption and gas viscosity change will have a great impact on gas production. Ignoring one of following scenarios, such as adsorption, gas permeability change, gas viscosity change, or pore radius change, will underestimate gas production.
Project description:The large amount of nanoscale pores in shale results in the inability to apply Darcy's law. Moreover, the gas adsorption of shale increases the complexity of pore size characterization and thus decreases the accuracy of flow regime estimation. In this study, an apparent permeability model, which describes the adsorptive gas flow behavior in shale by considering the effects of gas adsorption, stress dependence, and non-Darcy flow, is proposed. The pore size distribution, methane adsorption capacity, pore compressibility, and matrix permeability of the Barnett and Eagle Ford shales are measured in the laboratory to determine the critical parameters of gas transport phenomena. The slip coefficients, tortuosity, and surface diffusivity are predicted via the regression analysis of the permeability data. The results indicate that the apparent permeability model, which considers second-order gas slippage, Knudsen diffusion, and surface diffusion, could describe the gas flow behavior in the transition flow regime for nanoporous shale. Second-order gas slippage and surface diffusion play key roles in the gas flow in nanopores for Knudsen numbers ranging from 0.18 to 0.5. Therefore, the gas adsorption and non-Darcy flow effects, which involve gas slippage, Knudsen diffusion, and surface diffusion, are indispensable parameters of the permeability model for shale.
Project description:Hydraulic fracturing is one of the industrial processes behind the surging natural gas output in the United States. This technology inadvertently creates an engineered microbial ecosystem thousands of meters below Earth's surface. Here, we used laboratory reactors to perform manipulations of persisting shale microbial communities that are currently not feasible in field scenarios. Metaproteomic and metabolite findings from the laboratory were then corroborated using regression-based modeling performed on metagenomic and metabolite data from more than 40 produced fluids from five hydraulically fractured shale wells. Collectively, our findings show that Halanaerobium, Geotoga, and Methanohalophilus strain abundances predict a significant fraction of nitrogen and carbon metabolites in the field. Our laboratory findings also exposed cryptic predatory, cooperative, and competitive interactions that impact microorganisms across fractured shales. Scaling these results from the laboratory to the field identified mechanisms underpinning biogeochemical reactions, yielding knowledge that can be harnessed to potentially increase energy yields and inform management practices in hydraulically fractured shales.