NMR study comparing capillary trapping in Berea sandstone of air, carbon dioxide, and supercritical carbon dioxide after imbibition of water
Prather, C. A.
Bray, J. M.
Seymour, Joseph D.
Codd, Sarah L.
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Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) techniques were used to study the capillary trapping mechanisms relevant to carbon sequestration. Capillary trapping is an important mechanism in the initial trapping of supercritical CO2 in the pore structures of deep underground rock formations during the sequestration process. Capillary trapping is considered the most promising trapping option for carbon sequestration. NMR techniques noninvasively monitor the drainage and imbibition of air, CO2, and supercritical CO2 with DI H2O at low capillary numbers in a Berea sandstone rock core under conditions representative of a deep underground saline aquifer. Supercritical CO2 was found to have a lower residual nonwetting (NW) phase saturation than that of air and CO2. Supercritical CO2 behaves differently than gas phase air or CO2 and leads to a reduction in capillary trapping. NMR relaxometry data suggest that the NW phase, i.e., air, CO2, or supercritical CO2, is preferentially trapped in larger pores. This is consistent with snap-off conditions being more favorable in macroscale pores, as NW fluids minimize their contact area with the solid and hence prefer larger pores.
Prather CA, Bray JM, Seymour JD, Codd SL “NMR study comparing capillary trapping in Berea sandstone of air, carbon dioxide, and supercritical carbon dioxide after imbibition of water,” Water Resour. Res., 2016 Feb; 52:713–724.