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Open AccessArticle

Experimental Investigation of Spontaneous Imbibition of Water into Hydrate Sediments Using Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Method

State Key Laboratory for Geomechanics and Deep Underground Engineering, China University of Mining and Technology (Beijing), Beijing 100083, China
State Key Laboratory of Petroleum Resources and Prospecting, China University of Petroleum, Beijing 102249, China
Institute of Geophysics and Geomatics, China University of Geosciences, Wuhan 430074, China
Guangzhou Marine Geological Survey, China Geological Survey, Guangzhou 510760, China
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Energies 2020, 13(2), 445;
Received: 19 November 2019 / Revised: 2 January 2020 / Accepted: 13 January 2020 / Published: 16 January 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Natural Gas Hydrates)
Field observations show that less than one percent of dissociation water can be produced during gas hydrate production, resulting from spontaneous water imbibition into matrix pores. What’s more, the hydrate sediments are easily dispersed in water, and it is difficult to carry out spontaneous imbibition experiments. At present, there is little research work on the imbibition capacity of hydrate sediments. In this paper, a new method of water imbibition is proposed for hydrate sediments, and nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) technique is used to monitor water migration. The results show that as the imbibition time increases, the water is gradually imbibed into matrix pores. Water imbibition can cause dramatic changes in pore structure, such as microfracture initiation, fracture network generation and skeleton dispersion. When the imbibition time exceeds a critical value, many secondary pores (new large pores and micro-fractures) start to appear. When imbibition time exceeds the dispersion time, fracture networks are generated, eventually leading to dispersion of the sediment skeleton. The imbibition curves of hydrate sediments can be divided into two linear stages, which corresponds, respectively, to water imbibition of primary pores and secondary pores. The imbibition rate of secondary pores is significantly larger than that of primary pores, indicating that the generation of new fractures can greatly accelerate the imbibition rate. Research on the characteristics of water imbibition in hydrate sediments is important for optimizing hydrate production regime and increasing natural gas production. View Full-Text
Keywords: spontaneous imbibition; NMR; gas hydrate; imbibition capacity spontaneous imbibition; NMR; gas hydrate; imbibition capacity
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Yang, L.; Zhang, C.; Cai, J.; Lu, H. Experimental Investigation of Spontaneous Imbibition of Water into Hydrate Sediments Using Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Method. Energies 2020, 13, 445.

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