Challenges and opportunities of Digital Core analysis

UDK: 550.822.3
DOI: 10.24887/0028-2448-2018-2-18-22
Key words: digital rock analysis, relative phase permeability, rock core microtomography
Authors: S.V. Stepanov(TNNC LLC, RF, Tyumen; Tyumen State University, RF, Tyumen), D.P. Patrakov (TNNC LLC, RF, Tyumen), V.V. Vasilev (TNNC LLC, RF, Tyumen), A.B. Shabarov (Tyumen State University, RF, Tyumen), A.V. Shatalov (Tyumen State University, RF, Tyumen)

The paper analyzes the lessons learned while using the Digital Core technology to obtain data on void space structure and minerals distribution, as well to estimate the flow properties of rocks.

The possibility to reconstruct the void space is considered based on the results of studying several core samples by micro-CT and FIB-SEM methods. The quality of the reconstruction is analyzed by comparing the laboratory and micro-CT porosities. It is demonstrated that the basic software settings to interpret the results of microtomography in the overwhelming majority of cases do not provide an acceptable match between the CT-simulated and laboratory-measured results. Moreover, the difference with laboratory data increases with increasing porosity of samples, regardless of their size.

The paper justifies the efficiency of the computational and experimental approach to build the relative permeability functions through a combination of digital micro-simulation and lab core flow studies. The simulated steady-state two-phase flow of oil and water is considered in the pore capillary channel system using the generalized Bernoulli’s equation for which the inter-phase interaction function can be described by regression equations obtained from laboratory studies. The relative permeability values calculated by the proposed method are in good agreement with the laboratory data.

The results of studies show that so far this technology is far from perfect, but it has a number of significant advantages as compared with traditional laboratory experiments, therefore it can be considered as promising and practically valuable.


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