Advertisement

Transport in Porous Media

, Volume 111, Issue 1, pp 265–285 | Cite as

Transport of Nanoparticle-Stabilized CO\(_2\)-Foam in Porous Media

  • Valentina PrigiobbeEmail author
  • Andrew J. Worthen
  • Keith P. Johnston
  • Chun Huh
  • Steven L. Bryant
Article

Abstract

Foam is injected in the subsurface to improve mobility control through the increase in the effective gas viscosity, e.g., in CO\(_2\)-based enhanced oil recovery processes. As fine-textured foam has higher viscosity, it is envisaged to achieve an optimal foam texture and to maintain it for the entire period of an application. However, mechanisms of foam formation and destruction, which affect texture, are difficult to regulate. In this study, we investigate the synergic effect of nanoparticles and surfactant on the foam texture and the effective gas viscosity (\(\mu _g^f\)) during transport in a porous medium. Experiments using glass-bead packs were performed injecting CO\(_2\) and a solution containing either only surfactant or surfactant and nanoparticles. During each experiment, the pressure drop (\(\Delta p\)) through the porous medium was measured to follow the generation of the foam. A two-phase flow mechanistic model combining the mass conservation law for water and CO\(_2\) and the population balance equation of the lamellae was implemented to analyze the experiments and predict foam transport under the investigated conditions. The constitutive equations for foam generation and destruction were based on the dominant role of pressure gradient on lamella division and of capillary pressure on bubble coalescence, and their parameters were estimated using pressure drop measurements. Both equations were formulated for a surfactant-stabilized foam, and it was the aim of this work to understand their validity also for the case of a nanoparticle-stabilized foam. The experiments compare well with the theory showing that a foam stabilized with nanoparticles and surfactant can be modeled as a surfactant-stabilized foam. Overall, \(\Delta p\) increases smoothly while the foam forms and, upon breakthrough, it stabilizes around a constant value while approaching steady state. During this phase, oscillations occur, particularly when high-quality foam is generated as the system is close to its critical conditions of capillary pressure and water saturation. When steady state is reached, the effective gas viscosity varies with \(f_g\) and solution composition and significantly increases when surfactant and nanoparticles are added. The maximum value of \(\mu _g^f\) is 0.110 Pa s for \(f_g\) = 0.75, which is almost twofold of the maximum value attained when only a surfactant is used, corresponding to 0.067 Pa s at \(f_g\) = 0.4. This suggests that when nanoparticles and surfactant are employed, they can favor the formation of a strong high-quality CO\(_2\)-foam.

Keywords

CO\(_2\) Foam Nanoparticles Transport in porous media Population balance modeling 

Notes

Acknowledgments

This material is based upon work supported by the Department of Energy under Award Number DE-DE0005917. The authors would like to thank Parth S. Parikh, Tyler R. Dickey, Jefferson S. Liu, and Vu Tran for performing some of the experiments reported in the manuscript and Dr. Ijung Kim for collecting the TEM images. Finally, the authors would like to thank the anonymous reviewers for their valuable comments and suggestions.

Supplementary material

11242_2015_593_MOESM1_ESM.docx (25 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (docx 25 KB)

References

  1. Afsharpoor, A., Lee, G., Kam, S.: Mechanistic simulation of continuous gas injection period during surfactant-alternating-gas (SAG) processes using foam catastrophe theory. Chem. Eng. Sci. 65(11), 3615–3631 (2010)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Alvarez, J.M., Rivas, H.J., Rossen, W.R.: Unified model for steady-state foam behavior at high and low foam qualities. SPE J. 6(3), 325–333 (2001)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Aronson, A., Bergeron, V., Fagan, M., Radke, C.: The influence of disjoining pressure on foam stability and flow in porous media. Coll. Surf. A Physicochem. Eng. Asp. 83(2), 109–120 (1994)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Aroonsri, A., Worthen, A., Hariz, T., Johnston, K., Huh, C., Bryant, S.: Conditions for generating nanoparticle-stabilized CO\(_2\) foams in fracture and matrix flow. In: SPE Annual Technical Conference and Exhibition. Society of Petroleum Engineers (2013)Google Scholar
  5. Ashoori, E., Marchesin, D., Rossen, W.: Roles of transient and local equilibrium foam behavior in porous media: traveling wave. Coll. Surf. A Physicochem. Eng. Asp. 377(1–3), 228–242 (2011a)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Ashoori, E., Marchesin, D., Rossen, W.: Dynamic foam behavior in the entrance region of a porous medium. Coll. Surf. A Physicochem. Eng. Asp. 377(1), 217–227 (2011b)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Ashoori, E., Marchesin, D., Rossen, W.: Stability analysis of uniform equilibrium foam states for eor processes. Transp. Porous Media 92(3), 573–595 (2012)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Aveyard, R., Clint, J.H., Nees, D.: Small solid particles and liquid lenses at fluid/fluid interfaces. Colloid Polym. Sci. 278(2), 155–163 (2000)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Azmin, M., Mohamedi, G., Edirisinghe, M., Stride, E.: Dissolution of coated microbubbles: the effect of nanoparticles and surfactant concentration. Mater. Sci. Eng. C 32(8), 2654–2658 (2012)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Beck, J.V., Arnold, K.J.: Parameter Estimation in Engineering and Science. Wiley, New York (1977)Google Scholar
  11. Binks, B.P., Desforges, A., Duff, D.G.: Synergistic stabilization of emulsions by a mixture of surface-active nanoparticles and surfactant. Langmuir 23(3), 1098–1106 (2007)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Binks, B.P., Clint, J.H.: Solid wettability from surface energy components: relevance to pickering emulsions. Langmuir 18(4), 1270–1273 (2002)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Collins, R.: Flow of Fluids Through Porous Materials. Research & Engineering Consultants Inc, Englewood (1961)Google Scholar
  14. Dickinson, E., Ettelaie, R., Kostakis, T., Murray, B.S.: Factors controlling the formation and stability of air bubbles stabilized by partially hydrophobic silica nanoparticles. Langmuir 20(20), 8517–8525 (2004)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Du, Z., Bilbao-Montoya, M.P., Binks, B.P., Dickinson, E., Ettelaie, R., Murray, B.S.: Outstanding stability of particle-stabilized bubbles. Langmuir 19(8), 3106–3108 (2003)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Espinosa, D.A., Caldelas, F.M., Johnston, K.P., Bryant, S.L., Huh, C.: Nanoparticle-stabilized supercritical CO\(_2\) foams for potential mobility control applications. In: SPE Improved Oil Recovery Symposium: Proceedings, 24–28 April 2010, Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA, The Society of Petroleum Engineers, Richardson, TX, p. Paper 129925 (2010)Google Scholar
  17. Farajzadeh, R., Andrianov, A., Bruining, H., Zitha, P.L.J.: Comparative study of CO\(_2\) and N\(_2\) foams in porous media at low and high pressure? Temperatures. Ind. Eng. Chem. Res. 48(9), 4542–4552 (2009)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Gauglitz, P.A., Friedmann, F., Kam, S.I., Rossen, W.R.: Foam generation in homogeneous porous media. Chem. Eng. Sci. 57(19), 4037–4052 (2002)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Hirasaki, G., Jackson, R., Jin, M., Lawson, J., Londergan, J., Meinardus, H., Miller, C., Pope, G., Szafranski, R., Tanzil, D.: Field demonstration of the surfactant/foam process for remediation of a heterogeneous aquifer contaminated with DNAPL. In: Fiorenza, S., Miller, C.A., Oubre, C.L., Ward, C.H. (eds.) In NAPL Removal: Surfactants, Foams, and Microemulsions. Lewis, Boca Raton (2000)Google Scholar
  20. Hirasaki, G.J., Lawson, J.B.: Mechanisms of foam flow in porous media: apparent viscosity in smooth capillaries. Soc. Pet. Eng. 25(20), 176–190 (1985)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Horozov, T.S.: Foams and foam films stabilised by solid particles. Curr. Opin. Colloid Interface Sci. 13(3), 134–140 (2008)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Hunter, T.N., Pugh, R.J., Franks, G.V., Jameson, G.J.: The role of particles in stabilising foams and emulsions. Adv. Colloid Interface Sci. 137(2), 57–81 (2008)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Jiménez, A., Radke, C.: Dynamic stability of foam lamellae flowing through a periodically constrained pore. In: Borchardt, J.K., Yen, T.F. (eds.) Oil-Field Chemistry, Enhanced Recovery and Production Stimulation. America Chemical Society, Washington, DC (1961)Google Scholar
  24. Kam, S.I., Nguyen, Q.P., Li, Q., Rossen, W.R.: Dynamic simulations with an improved model for foam generation. SPE J. 12(01), 35–48 (2007)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Kam, S., Rossen, W.: A model for foam generation in homogeneous porous media. SPEJ 8, 417–425 (2003)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Kaptay, G.: Interfacial criteria for stabilization of liquid foams by solid particles. Coll. Surf. A 230(1–3), 67–80 (2003)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Khatib, Z.I., Hirasaki, G.J., Falls, A.H.: Effects of capillary pressure on coalescence and phase mobilities in foams flowing through porous media. SPE Reserv. Eng. 3(03), 919–926 (1988)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Kovscek, A., Patzek, T., Radke, C.: A mechanistic population balance model for transient and steady-state foam flow in Boise sandstone. Chem. Eng. Sci. 50(23), 3783–3799 (1995)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Kovscek, A., Radke, C.: Fundamentals of foam transport in porous media. ACS Adv. Chem. Ser. 242, 115–164 (1994)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Lake, L.W.: Enhanced Oil Recovery. Prentice Hall, Upper Saddle River (1989)Google Scholar
  31. Lee, S., Lee, G., Kam, S.: Three-phase fractional flow analysis for foam-assisted non-aqueous phase liquid NAPL remediation. Transp. Porous Media 101(3), 373–400 (2014)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Leverett, M.: Capillary behavior in porous solids. Trans. Am. Inst. Min. Metall. Eng. 142, 152–169 (1941)Google Scholar
  33. Mulligan, C.N., Eftekhari, F.: Remediation with surfactant foam of PCP-contaminated soil. Eng. Geol. 70(3–4), 269–279 (2003)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Murray, B.S., Ettelaie, R.: Foam stability: proteins and nanoparticles. Curr. Opin. Colloid Interface Sci. 9(5), 314–320 (2004)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Orr, F.M., Taber, J.J.: Use of carbon dioxide in enhanced oil recovery. Science 224(4649), 563–569 (1982)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Plug, W.J., Bruining, J.: Capillary pressure for the sand CO\(_2\) water system under various pressure conditions. Application to CO\(_2\) sequestration. Adv. Water Resour. 30(11), 2339–2353 (2007)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Prud’homme, R.K.: Foams: Theory, Measurements and Applications, vol. 57. CRC Press, Boca Raton (1995)Google Scholar
  38. Ramsden, W.: Separation of solids in the surface-layers of solutions and ’suspensions’ (observations on surface-membranes, bubbles, emulsions, and mechanical coagulation). Preliminary account. Proc. R. Soc. Lond. 72(477–486), 156–164 (1903)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Ransohoff, T.C., Radke, C.J.: Mechanisms of foam generation in glass-bead packs. Soc. Pet. Eng. 3(2), 573–585 (1988)Google Scholar
  40. Rossen, W.R.: Snap-off in constricted tubes and porous media. Coll. Surf. A 166(1), 101–107 (2000)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Rossen, W.R., Gauglitz, P.A.: Percolation theory of creation and mobilization of foams in porous media. AIChE J. 36(8), 1176–1188 (1990)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  42. Rossen, W., Lu, Q.: Effect of capillary crossflow on foam improved oil recovery. SPE 3831, 579–589 (1997a)Google Scholar
  43. Rossen, W., Lu, Q., et al.: Effect of capillary crossflow on foam improved oil recovery. In: SPE Western Regional Meeting. Society of Petroleum Engineers (1997b)Google Scholar
  44. Sethumadhavan, G., Bindal, S., Nikolov, A., Wasan, D.: Stability of thin liquid films containing polydisperse particles. Coll. Surf. A 204(13), 51–62 (2002)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Singh, G., Hirasaki, G.J., Miller, C.A.: Dynamics of foam films in constricted pores. AIChE J. 43(12), 3241–3252 (1997)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Singh, V., Wang, S., Kool, E.T.: Genetically encoded multispectral labeling of proteins with polyfluorophores on a DNA backbone. J. Am. Chem. Soc. 135(16), 6184–6191 (2013)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Tanzil, D., Hirasaki, G.J., Miller, C.A.: Conditions for foam generation in homogeneous porous media. Presented at SPE/DOE Improved Oil Symposium, Tulsa, 13–17 April 2002Google Scholar
  48. Worthen, A.J., Bryant, S.L., Huh, C., Johnston, K.P.: Carbon dioxide-in-water foams stabilized with nanoparticles and surfactant acting in synergy. AIChE J. 59(9), 3490–3501 (2013)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Worthen, A.J., Bagaria, H.G., Chen, Y., Bryant, S.L., Huh, C., Johnston, K.P.: Nanoparticle-stabilized carbon dioxide-in-water foams with fine texture. J. Colloid Interface Sci. 391, 142–151 (2013)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Worthen, A.J., Parikh, P.S., Chen, Y., Bryant, S.L., Huh, C., Johnston, K.P.: Carbon dioxide-in-water foams stabilized with a mixture of nanoparticles and surfactant for CO\(_2\) storage and utilization applications. Energy Procedia 63, 7929–7938 (2014). 12th International Conference on Greenhouse Gas Control Technologies, GHGT-12CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Xue, Z., Foster, E., Wang, Y., Nayak, S., Cheng, V., Ngo, V.W., Pennell, K.D., Bielawski, C.W., Johnston, K.P.: Effect of grafted copolymer composition on iron oxide nanoparticle stability and transport in porous media at high salinity. Energy Fuels 28(6), 3655–3665 (2014)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Yu, J., An, C., Mo, D., Liu, N., Lee, R.L.: Foam mobility control for nanoparticle-stabilized supercritical CO\(_2\) foam. Society of Petroleum Engineers (2012)Google Scholar
  53. Yu, J., Khalil, M., Liu, N., Lee, R.: Effect of particle hydrophobicity on CO\(_2\) foam generation and foam flow behavior in porous media. Fuel 126, 104–108 (2014)CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Zhang, Z.F., Zhong, L., White, M.D., Szecsody, J.E.: Experimental investigation of the effective foam viscosity in unsaturated porous media. Vadose Zone J. 11(4) (2012)Google Scholar
  55. Zhang, S., Sun, D., Dong, X., Li, C., Xu, J.: Aqueous foams stabilized with particles and nonionic surfactants. Coll. Surf. A 324(1–3), 1–8 (2008)CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Valentina Prigiobbe
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Andrew J. Worthen
    • 3
  • Keith P. Johnston
    • 3
  • Chun Huh
    • 1
  • Steven L. Bryant
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Petroleum and Geosystems EngineeringThe University of Texas at AustinAustinUSA
  2. 2.Department of Civil, Environmental, and Ocean EngineeringStevens Institute of TechnologyHobokenUSA
  3. 3.McKetta Department of Chemical EngineeringThe University of Texas at AustinAustinUSA
  4. 4.Department of Chemical and Petroleum EngineeringThe University of CalgaryCalgaryCanada

Personalised recommendations