Effects of grain shape and packing pattern on spontaneous imbibition under different boundary conditions: Pore-scale simulation

Yang Liu, Mingjie Chen, Shuyu Sun, Zhengdong Lei, Jianhui Zeng, Jianchao Cai

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Core-scale spontaneous imbibition experiments and numerical simulations have demonstrated that the macroscopic imbibition performance is significantly different under different boundary conditions. However, the detailed pore-scale flow mechanisms behind these phenomena and the influence of porous media's geometric features on the imbibition behavior under different boundaries have not been addressed in depth. In this work, an optimized color-gradient lattice Boltzmann model is applied to simulate spontaneous imbibition in granular media under four boundary conditions. The influence of grain shape and packing pattern on the two-phase interface evolution and the recovery factor during spontaneous imbibition is investigated while fixing different models' porosity, grain number, and size distribution. It is found that the grain shape has little influence on the drainage interface evolution at the initial stage but it has a more significant influence on the imbibition interface during counter-current spontaneous imbibition. The grain packing pattern influences the evolution of drainage and imbibition interfaces and the recovery factor. Spontaneous imbibition with different boundary conditions has different imbibition rates and ultimate recovery factors. The fastest imbibition rate and highest ultimate recovery are obtained under all faces open and two faces open (free) boundary conditions, respectively. This research provides pore-scale insights into the complex dynamic fluid displacement mechanism between the fracture and matrix of fractured oil and gas reservoirs.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)127484
JournalJournal of Hydrology
StatePublished - Feb 9 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Water Science and Technology


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