EXPERIMENTAL INVESTIGATION OF RELATIVE PERMEABILITY UPSCALING FROM THE MICRO-SCALE TO THE MACRO-SCALE
EXPERIMENTAL INVESTIGATION OF RELATIVE PERMEABILITY UPSCALING FROM THE MICRO-SCALE TO THE MACRO-SCALE The principal challenge of upscaling techniques for multi-phase fluid dynamics in porous media is to determine which properties on the micro-scale can be used to predict macroscopic flow and spatial distribution of phases at core- and field-scales. The most notable outcome of recent theories is the identification of interfacial areas per volume for multiple phases as a fundamental parameter that determines much of the multi-phase properties of the porous medium. A formal program of experimental research was begun to directly test upscaling theories in fluid flow through porous media by comparing measurements of relative permeability and capillary-saturation with measurements of interfacial area per volume. During this reporting period, we have shown experimentally that the coherence detection can be performed in a borescope. The measurement of interfacial area per volume (IAV), capillary pressure and saturation in two dimensional micro-models structures has shown the existence of a unique relationship among these hydraulic parameters for different pore geometry. The measurement of interfacial area per volume on a three-dimensional natural sample, i.e., sandstone, is essentially completed for imbibition conditions.
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