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Energies 2013, 6(7), 3622-3636; doi:10.3390/en6073622

Measurements of Water Permeability in Unconsolidated Porous Media with Methane Hydrate Formation

1,2,* , 1,2
Key Laboratory of Renewable Energy and Gas Hydrate, Guangzhou Institute of Energy Conversion, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Guangzhou 510640, China
Guangzhou Center for Gas Hydrate Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Guangzhou 510640, China
University of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100083, China
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 6 May 2013 / Revised: 17 June 2013 / Accepted: 15 July 2013 / Published: 23 July 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Natural Gas Hydrate)
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Permeability is one of the key factors that determine the fluids flow capacity and production potential of hydrate deposits. In this study, an experimental setup is developed to investigate the flow properties of the porous media, and the permeabilities to water are measured in the unconsolidated porous media with or without hydrate deposition in the pores. A specialized method of precisely controlling the amount of injected methane gas is employed to form methane hydrate in the core sample, and the hydrate formation process is described by the change characteristics of the gas and hydrate saturations. It is found that the residual gas plays an obstructive role in the water flow and it tends to slightly reduce the water permeability in the porous media, especially under high pressure conditions. After hydrate formation in the core sample, relatively steady flow state can be obtained under suitable water injection rate Q at which hydrate dissociation rate is very slow. The absolute permeability of the porous sample is reduced from 49.2 to 1.2 Darcies when the hydrate saturation increases from 0 to 9.3% in this study, indicating a strong dependence of k on the hydrate saturation.
Keywords: permeability; methane hydrate; porous media permeability; methane hydrate; porous media
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Li, B.; Li, X.-S.; Li, G.; Jia, J.-L.; Feng, J.-C. Measurements of Water Permeability in Unconsolidated Porous Media with Methane Hydrate Formation. Energies 2013, 6, 3622-3636.

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