Prediction of permeability and formation factor of sandstone with hybrid lattice Boltzmann/finite element simulation on microtomographic images

Sun, WaiChing; Wong, Teng-fong

In Fontainebleau sandstone, the evolution of transport properties with porosity is related to changes in both the size and connectivity of the pore space. Microcomputed tomography can be used to characterize the relevant geometric attributes, with the resolution that is sufficiently refined for realistic simulation of transport properties based on the 3D image. In this study, we adopted a hybrid computation scheme that is based on a hierarchical multi-scale approach. The specimen was partitioned into cubic sub-volumes for pore-scale simulation of hydraulic permeability and formation factor using the lattice Boltzmann method. The pore-scale results were then linked with finite element simulation in a homogenized scheme to compute and upscale the transport properties to specimen scale. The simulated permeability and formation factor have magnitude and anisotropy that are in good agreement with experimental rock physics data. Together with simulated and measured values of connected porosity and specific surface area, they provide useful insights into how pore geometry controls the evolution of the transport properties.


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Also Published In

International Journal of Rock Mechanics and Mining Sciences

More About This Work

Academic Units
Civil Engineering and Engineering Mechanics
Published Here
May 7, 2018