Article Metrics


Online attention

A novel upscaling procedure for characterising heterogeneous shale porosity from nanometer-to millimetre-scale in 3D

DOI: 10.1016/ DOI Help

Authors: Lin Ma (The University of Manchester) , Patrick J. Dowey (The University of Manchester) , Ernest Rutter (The University of Manchester) , Kevin G. Taylor (The University of Manchester) , Peter Lee (Research Complex at Harwell; UCL Mechanical Engineering)
Co-authored by industrial partner: No

Type: Journal Paper
Journal: Energy

State: Published (Approved)
Published: June 2019
Diamond Proposal Number(s): 4022

Abstract: Microstructures and pore systems in shales are key to understanding the role of shale in many energy applications. This study proposes a novel multi-stage upscaling procedure to comprehensively investigate the heterogeneous and complex microstructures and pore systems in a laminated and microfractured shale, utilizing 3D multi-scale imaging data. Five imaging techniques were used for characterisation from sub-nanoscale to macroscale (core-scale), spanning four orders of magnitude. Image data collected using X-ray tomography, Focused Ion Beam, and Electron Tomography techniques range in voxel size from 0.6 nm to 13 μm. Prior to upscaling, a novel two-step analysis was performed to ensure sub-samples were representative. Following this, a three-step procedure, based on homogenising descriptors and computed volume coefficients, was used to upscale the quantified microstructure and pore system. At the highest resolution (nanoscale), four distinct pore types were identified. At the sub-micron scale equations were derived for three pore-associated phases. At the microscale, the volume coefficients were recalculated to upscale the pore system to the macroscale (millimetre). The accuracy of the upscaling methodology was verified, predicting the total porosity within 7.2% discrepancy. The results provide a unique perspective to understand heterogeneous rock types, breaking though prior scale limitations in the pore system.

Journal Keywords: Multi-scale; Pore system; Upscaling; Shale; X-ray tomography; FIB-SEM

Subject Areas: Earth Science, Energy

Instruments: I13-2-Diamond Manchester Imaging

Added On: 12/06/2019 12:08

Discipline Tags:

Earth Sciences & Environment Energy Geology Geophysics

Technical Tags:

Imaging Tomography