Presentation from Ryan Armstrong

Ryan Armstrong from UNSW, School of Petroleum Engineering, Sydney, Australia, is visiting Trondheim in connection with the SCA conference. He will be visiting NTNU on September the 3rd, where he will be giving a presentation of his recent research.

Title: “Topological characterisation of multiphase flow”.

Place: Sydområdet PTS Paviljong 1. etasje Møterom 162 (443_162)0y2a2701_cropTime: 12:15-13.00

Ryan Armstrong’s research interests are on multiphase flow through porous media with applications to enhanced oil recovery and special core analysis. He specializes on the usage of micro-fluidic devices and dynamic X-ray microtomography experiments to study the pore-scale physics relevant to subsurface engineering technologies. He has worked on projects ranging from microbial enhanced oil recovery (MEOR) to alkaline surfactant polymer flooding (ASP) to digital core analysis. Previously, he was a member of the Rock and Fluid Science Team at Shell Global Solutions International B.V., where he worked with Schlumberger Moscow Research on a collaborative research project that assessed pore-scale modeling tools for digital core analysis.

You will find full title and abstract below.

Porous media characterization using Minkowski functionals: theories, applications and future directions

Ryan T. Armstrong, University of New South Wales, School of Minerals and Energy Resources Engineering

An elementary question in porous media research is in regards to the relationship between structure and function. In most fields, the porosity and permeability of porous media are properties of key interest. There is, however, no universal relationship between porosity and permeability since not only does the fraction of void space matter for permeability but also the connectivity of the void fraction. With the evolution of modern day X-ray microcomputed tomography (micro-CT) and advanced computing it is now possible to visualize porous media at an unprecedented level of detail. Approaches in analysing micro-CT data of porous structures vary in the literature from phenomenological characterization to network analysis to geometrical and/or topological measurements. This leads to a question about how to consistently characterize porous media in a way that facilitates theoretical developments. In this effort, the Minkowski functionals (MF) emerge from the field of statistical physics where it is evident that many physical processes depend on the geometry and topology of bodies or multiple bodies in 3D space. I will present an overview of the theoretical basis of the MF, mathematical theorems and methods necessary for porous media characterization and recent findings relating the MF to macro-scale porous media properties. The examples will cover the geometrical state of fluids during multiphase flow and the macro-scale definition of wettability based on pore-scale curvatures and topology. With the wealth of information generated from 3D imaging of porous media it is necessary to develop an understating of the limitations, opportunities and theoretical frameworks necessary to develop new macro-scale theories and characterisation of multiphase flow in porous media based on rigorous pore-scale data.