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A Pore-Network Model of In-Situ Combustion in Porous Media

Description: This report the use of dual pore networks (pores and solid sites) for modeling the effect of the microstructure on combustion processes in porous media is considered. The model accounts for flow and transport of the gas phase in the porespace, where convection predominates, and for heat transfer by conduction in the solid phase. Gas phase flow in the pore and throats is governed by Darcy's law.
Date: January 29, 2001
Creator: Lu, Chuan & Yortsos, Y.C.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Subsurface Multiphase Flow and Multicomponent Reactive Transport Modeling using High-Performance Computing

Description: Numerical modeling has become a critical tool to the Department of Energy for evaluating the environmental impact of alternative energy sources and remediation strategies for legacy waste sites. Unfortunately, the physical and chemical complexity of many sites overwhelms the capabilities of even most “state of the art” groundwater models. Of particular concern are the representation of highly-heterogeneous stratified rock/soil layers in the subsurface and the biological and geochemical interactions of chemical species within multiple fluid phases. Clearly, there is a need for higher-resolution modeling (i.e. more spatial, temporal, and chemical degrees of freedom) and increasingly mechanistic descriptions of subsurface physicochemical processes. We present research being performed in the development of PFLOTRAN, a parallel multiphase flow and multicomponent reactive transport model. Written in Fortran90, PFLOTRAN is founded upon PETSc data structures and solvers and has exhibited impressive strong scalability on up to 4000 processors on the ORNL Cray XT3. We are employing PFLOTRAN in the simulation of uranium transport at the Hanford 300 Area, a contaminated site of major concern to the Department of Energy, the State of Washington, and other government agencies where overly-simplistic historical modeling erroneously predicted decade removal times for uranium by ambient groundwater flow. By leveraging the billions of degrees of freedom available through high-performance computation using tens of thousands of processors, we can better characterize the release of uranium into groundwater and its subsequent transport to the Columbia River, and thereby better understand and evaluate the effectiveness of various proposed remediation strategies.
Date: August 1, 2007
Creator: Hammond, Glenn E.; Lichtner, Peter C. & Lu, Chuan
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department


Description: Development of enhanced geothermal systems (EGS) will require creation of a reservoir of sufficient volume to enable commercial-scale heat transfer from the reservoir rocks to the working fluid. A key assumption associated with reservoir creation/stimulation is that sufficient rock volumes can be hydraulically fractured via both tensile and shear failure, and more importantly by reactivation of naturally existing fractures (by shearing), to create the reservoir. The advancement of EGS greatly depends on our understanding of the dynamics of the intimately coupled rock-fracture-fluid-heat system and our ability to reliably predict how reservoirs behave under stimulation and production. Reliable performance predictions of EGS reservoirs require accurate and robust modeling for strongly coupled thermal-hydrological-mechanical (THM) processes. Conventionally, these types of problems have been solved using operator-splitting methods, usually by coupling a subsurface flow and heat transport simulators with a solid mechanics simulator via input files. An alternative approach is to solve the system of nonlinear partial differential equations that govern multiphase fluid flow, heat transport, and rock mechanics simultaneously, using a fully coupled, fully implicit solution procedure, in which all solution variables (pressure, enthalpy, and rock displacement fields) are solved simultaneously. This paper describes numerical simulations used to investigate the poro- and thermal- elastic effects of working fluid injection and thermal energy extraction on the properties of the fractures and rock matrix of a hypothetical EGS reservoir, using a novel simulation software FALCON (Podgorney et al., 2011), a finite element based simulator solving fully coupled multiphase fluid flow, heat transport, rock deformation, and fracturing using a global implicit approach. Investigations are also conducted on how these poro- and thermal-elastic effects are related to fracture permeability evolution.
Date: January 1, 2012
Creator: Podgorney, Robert; Lu, Chuan & Huang, Hai
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department


Description: Systems of multicomponent reactive transport in porous media that are large, highly nonlinear, and tightly coupled due to complex nonlinear reactions and strong solution-media interactions are often described by a system of coupled nonlinear partial differential algebraic equations (PDAEs). A preconditioned Jacobian-Free Newton-Krylov (JFNK) solution approach is applied to solve the PDAEs in a fully coupled, fully implicit manner. The advantage of the JFNK method is that it avoids explicitly computing and storing the Jacobian matrix during Newton nonlinear iterations for computational efficiency considerations. This solution approach is also enhanced by physics-based blocking preconditioning and multigrid algorithm for efficient inversion of preconditioners. Based on the solution approach, we have developed a reactive transport simulator named RAT. Numerical results are presented to demonstrate the efficiency and massive scalability of the simulator for reactive transport problems involving strong solution-mineral interactions and fast kinetics. It has been applied to study the highly nonlinearly coupled reactive transport system of a promising in situ environmental remediation that involves urea hydrolysis and calcium carbonate precipitation.
Date: June 1, 2012
Creator: Guo, Luanjing; Lu, Chuan; Huang, Hai & Gaston, Derek R.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Investigation of Multiscale and Multiphase Flow, Transport and Reaction in Heavy Oil Recovery Process

Description: The emphasis of this work was on investigating the mechanisms and factors that control the recovery of heavy oil, with the objective to improve recovery efficiencies. For this purpose, the interaction of flow, transport and reaction at various scales (from the pore-network to the field scales) were studied. Particular mechanisms investigated included the onset of gas flow in foamy oil production and in in-situ steam drive, gravity drainage in steam process, the development of sustained combustion fronts and the propagation of foams in porous media. Analytical, computational and experimental methods were utilized to advance the state of the art in heavy oil recovery. Successful completion of this research was expected to lead to improvements in the recovery efficiency of various heavy oil processes.
Date: January 19, 2000
Creator: Yortsos, Yanis C.; Akkutlu, Yucel; Amilik, Pouya; Kechagia, Persefoni; Lu, Chuan; Shariati, Maryam et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department