Effect of Cryogenic Liquid Nitrogen on the Morphological and Petrophysical Characteristics of Tight Gas Sandstone Rocks from Kirthar Fold Belt, Indus Basin, Pakistan

Aftab Ahmed Mahesar, Muhammad Ali, Abdul Majeed Shar, Khalil Rehman Memon, Udit Surya Mohanty, Hamed Akhondzadeh, Abdul Haque Tunio, Stefan Iglauer, Alireza Keshavarz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

48 Scopus citations

Abstract

Tight gas sandstone production faces enormous challenges from marginal matrix porosity and permeability in rock formations. In this regard, the liquid nitrogen (LN2) treatment remedy has been suggested as an appropriate stimulation approach to resolve this issue. An experimental study was carried out to investigate the cryogenic liquid nitrogen fracturing of tight rock sandstone to enhance gas recovery from such reservoirs. Three core samples from the Kirthar fold belt were subjected to LN2 treatment for 30, 60, and 90 min. Petrophysical characterization was performed through scanning electron microscopy, atomic force microscopy, nanoindentation measurements, and quantitative X-ray diffraction technique. The results reveal wide conductive fractures with an optimum size of 30 μm in the 90 minutes treatment case. Moreover, petrophysical measurements show that porosity increases from 8 to 19% at an optimal liquid nitrogen (LN2) treatment duration (90 minutes). Furthermore, the permeability of the samples increased from 31 to 53 md after treatment with liquid nitrogen. Results from nanoindentation studies after LN2 treatment revealed a significant decrease in nanoindentation moduli because of the increase in cracked rock compressibility.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)14548-14559
Number of pages12
JournalEnergy and Fuels
Volume34
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 19 2020
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • General Chemical Engineering
  • Fuel Technology

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