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Authors: Jacob, Arne
Peltz, Markus
Hale, Sina
Enzmann, Frieder
Moravcova, Olga
Warr, Laurence N.
Grathoff, Georg
Blum, Philipp
Kersten, Michael
Title: Simulating permeability reduction by clay mineral nanopores in a tight sandstone by combining computer X-ray microtomography and focussed ion beam scanning electron microscopy imaging
Online publication date: 7-Dec-2021
Year of first publication: 2021
Language: english
Abstract: Computer X-ray microtomography (µXCT) represents a powerful tool for investigating the physical properties of porous rocks. While calculated porosities determined by this method typically match experimental measurements, computed permeabilities are often overestimated by more than 1 order of magnitude. This effect increases towards smaller pore sizes, as shown in this study, in which nanostructural features related to clay minerals reduce the permeability of tight reservoir sandstone samples. Focussed ion beam scanning electron microscopy (FIB-SEM) tomography was applied to determine the permeability effects of illites at the nanometre scale, and Navier–Stokes equations were applied to calculate the permeability of these domains. With these data, microporous domains (porous voxels) were defined using microtomography images of a tight reservoir sample. The distribution of these domains could be extrapolated by calibration against size distributions measured in FIB-SEM images. For this, we assumed a mean permeability for the dominant clay mineral (illite) in the rock and assigned it to the microporous domains within the structure. The results prove the applicability of our novel approach by combining FIB-SEM with X-ray tomographic rock core scans to achieve a good correspondence between measured and simulated permeabilities. This methodology results in a more accurate representation of reservoir rock permeability in comparison to that estimated purely based on µXCT images.
DDC: 550 Geowissenschaften
550 Earth sciences
Institution: Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz
Department: FB 09 Chemie, Pharmazie u. Geowissensch.
Place: Mainz
Version: Published version
Publication type: Zeitschriftenaufsatz
License: CC BY
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Journal: Solid earth
Pages or article number: 1
Publisher: Copernicus Publ.
Publisher place: Göttingen
Issue date: 2021
ISSN: 1869-9529
Publisher URL:
Publisher DOI: 10.5194/se-12-1-2021
Appears in collections:JGU-Publikationen

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