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Title: Novel highly dispersible, thermally stable core/shell proppants for geothermal applications

Abstract

The use of proppants during reservoir stimulation in tight oil and gas plays requires the introduction of highly viscous fluids to transport the proppants (µm–mm) with the fracturing fluid. The highly viscous fluids required result in increased pump loads and energy costs. Furthermore, although proppant deployment with fracturing fluids is a standard practice for unconventional oil and gas stimulation operations, there are only a few examples in the US of the applying proppant technology to geothermal energy production. This is due to proppant dissolution, proppant flowback and loss of permeability associated with the extreme temperatures found in enhanced geothermal systems (EGS). This work demonstrates proof-of-concept of a novel, CO2-responsive, lightweight sintered-bauxite/polymer core/shell proppant. The polymer shell has two main roles; 1) increase the stability of the proppant dispersion in water without the addition of rheology modifiers, and 2) once at the fracture network react with CO2 to promote particle aggregation and prop fractures open. In this work, both of these roles are demonstrated together with the thermal and chemical stability of the materials showing the potential of these CO2-responsive proppants as an alternative proppant technology for geothermal and unconventional oil/gas applications.

Authors:
; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ;
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), Richland, WA (US), Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory (EMSL)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
1367377
Report Number(s):
PNNL-SA-121506
Journal ID: ISSN 0375-6505; 48172
DOE Contract Number:  
AC05-76RL01830
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Geothermics; Journal Volume: 70
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
Environmental Molecular Sciences Laboratory

Citation Formats

Childers, Ian M., Endres, Mackenzie, Burns, Carolyne, Garcia, Benjamin J., Liu, Jian, Wietsma, Thomas W., Bonneville, Alain, Moore, Joseph, Leavy, Ian I., Zhong, Lirong, Schaef, Herbert T., Fu, Li, Wang, Hong-Fei, and Fernandez, Carlos A. Novel highly dispersible, thermally stable core/shell proppants for geothermal applications. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.1016/j.geothermics.2017.05.013.
Childers, Ian M., Endres, Mackenzie, Burns, Carolyne, Garcia, Benjamin J., Liu, Jian, Wietsma, Thomas W., Bonneville, Alain, Moore, Joseph, Leavy, Ian I., Zhong, Lirong, Schaef, Herbert T., Fu, Li, Wang, Hong-Fei, & Fernandez, Carlos A. Novel highly dispersible, thermally stable core/shell proppants for geothermal applications. United States. doi:10.1016/j.geothermics.2017.05.013.
Childers, Ian M., Endres, Mackenzie, Burns, Carolyne, Garcia, Benjamin J., Liu, Jian, Wietsma, Thomas W., Bonneville, Alain, Moore, Joseph, Leavy, Ian I., Zhong, Lirong, Schaef, Herbert T., Fu, Li, Wang, Hong-Fei, and Fernandez, Carlos A. Wed . "Novel highly dispersible, thermally stable core/shell proppants for geothermal applications". United States. doi:10.1016/j.geothermics.2017.05.013.
@article{osti_1367377,
title = {Novel highly dispersible, thermally stable core/shell proppants for geothermal applications},
author = {Childers, Ian M. and Endres, Mackenzie and Burns, Carolyne and Garcia, Benjamin J. and Liu, Jian and Wietsma, Thomas W. and Bonneville, Alain and Moore, Joseph and Leavy, Ian I. and Zhong, Lirong and Schaef, Herbert T. and Fu, Li and Wang, Hong-Fei and Fernandez, Carlos A.},
abstractNote = {The use of proppants during reservoir stimulation in tight oil and gas plays requires the introduction of highly viscous fluids to transport the proppants (µm–mm) with the fracturing fluid. The highly viscous fluids required result in increased pump loads and energy costs. Furthermore, although proppant deployment with fracturing fluids is a standard practice for unconventional oil and gas stimulation operations, there are only a few examples in the US of the applying proppant technology to geothermal energy production. This is due to proppant dissolution, proppant flowback and loss of permeability associated with the extreme temperatures found in enhanced geothermal systems (EGS). This work demonstrates proof-of-concept of a novel, CO2-responsive, lightweight sintered-bauxite/polymer core/shell proppant. The polymer shell has two main roles; 1) increase the stability of the proppant dispersion in water without the addition of rheology modifiers, and 2) once at the fracture network react with CO2 to promote particle aggregation and prop fractures open. In this work, both of these roles are demonstrated together with the thermal and chemical stability of the materials showing the potential of these CO2-responsive proppants as an alternative proppant technology for geothermal and unconventional oil/gas applications.},
doi = {10.1016/j.geothermics.2017.05.013},
journal = {Geothermics},
number = ,
volume = 70,
place = {United States},
year = {Wed Nov 01 00:00:00 EDT 2017},
month = {Wed Nov 01 00:00:00 EDT 2017}
}