Date of Award
Doctor of Philosophy
Geological and Atmospheric Sciences
The subject of vibratory (sonic or seismic) stimulation of fluid flow in porous media has aroused increasing interest in the last decade, primarily in connection with the applications to enhanced oil recovery (EOR). Compared to the traditional methods of EOR, vibratory stimulation not only may result in high recovery efficiency, but also would be ecologically clean and economic in implementation. However, due to the complexity of the naturally occurring porous media and the physical processes operating in this multi-phase system, research and development of the methods allowing the prediction of the effect of vibrations in realistic settings are required before the technology can become more than an abstract possibility;I have developed and compared several numerical techniques of modeling the effect of vibration on two-phase immiscible displacement in porous media, different mainly in the way a porous medium is represented in a computer model. The capillary entrapment and vibration-induced inertial mobilization were the physical mechanisms incorporated into every one of these models;I have found that for a particular entrapped ganglion of a non-wetting fluid there is a minimum amplitude required for its mobilization, which increases with increasing vibration frequency; at a given amplitude, higher frequencies reduce the mobilization effect. Detailed estimation of the effect of vibration for a wide variety of the parameters of pore geometry and pore-filling fluids can be performed using the specially designed computer program I have developed;I have utilized the computational-fluid-dynamics package FLUENT for detailed modeling of the fluid interface configurations during an immiscible displacement on the scale of a single pore, and analyzed the applicability of the software as a means for predicting the effect of vibration for real-world scenarios;I have also proposed a method for modeling the effect of vibration in a very large number of interconnected pores (required to provide estimates for field applications of the vibratory stimulation technique) using a combination of pore-network modeling with the results obtained from accurate numerical simulations at the scale of several pores.
Digital Repository @ Iowa State University, http://lib.dr.iastate.edu/
Pavel P. Iassonov
Iassonov, Pavel P., "Quantitative prediction of the effect of vibrations on two-phase immiscible flow in porous media " (2005). Retrospective Theses and Dissertations. 1740.