The impact of residual water on CH4-CO2 dispersion in consolidated rock cores
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Assessment of the viability of enhanced gas recovery (EGR), in which CO2 is injected into natural gas reservoirs, requires accurate and appropriate reservoir simulations. These necessitate provision of parameters describing dispersion between the fluids. Here we systematically measure fluid dispersion in various rock cores (sandstones and carbonates), both dry and at irreducible water saturation, at reservoir conditions. In this manner we evaluate the impact of the irreducible water on the miscible displacement processes. As such this represents the first measurement of dispersion as a function of water saturation for supercritical gases in consolidated media. Complementary measurements of water spatial distribution along the rock axis, as well as the pore size distribution occupied by the water were performed using magnetic resonance techniques. Irreducible water was found to increase dispersivity by a factor of up to 7.3. The dispersion coefficient (K) was measured as a function of velocity and the data for both dry and water-containing samples were successfully combined on a K-Péclet number (Pe) plot, enabling ready future inclusion into EGR reservoir models. The power-law dependence of K upon Pe produced an exponent of 1.2 for dry and water-saturated sandstones and 1.4 for dry and water-saturated carbonates, consistent with literature results (Bijeljic et al., 2011; Honari et al., 2015).
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