Field Scale Reservoir Simulation through a Lattice Boltzmann Framework
MetadataShow full item record
The primary motivation of this work is to simulate the complex behavior of oil, gas and water as it flows through an unconventional reservoir. Unconventional reservoirs require hydraulic fracturing to provide the reservoir with conductive pathways for fluid to flow. Without fracturing the rock, the oil and gas would remain trapped in impermeable pore spaces. Unconventional reservoirs typically exhibit high heterogeneity in rock properties but also in fluid flow regimes. A simulation tool needs to be able to capture small scale rock heterogeneities, multiple flow regimes, and additional interaction physics between the rock and fluid. In this dissertation, an alternative approach to modeling oil and gas reservoirs at the field scale is presented. Instead of a “top down” paradigm, typical of classic reservoir simulation techniques (finite element, finite volume and finite difference methods), this work focuses on a “bottom up” paradigm called the lattice Boltzmann method (LBM). The LBM is a numerical discretization of the Boltzmann equation, in which a fluid is described as a distribution of particles, each with a unique velocity. The evolution of the distribution of particles is governed by a series of streaming and collision operations. The streaming operation translates the particle distribution through space. The collision operator describes how the particle distribution interacts with other distributions -- through collision and a transfer of momentum. The collective behavior of small scale particle dynamics (streaming and collision steps) yield macroscopic fluid behavior in the large space and time scale limit.
Benamram, Zachary Ross (2017). Field Scale Reservoir Simulation through a Lattice Boltzmann Framework. Doctoral dissertation, Texas A & M University. Available electronically from