Multicomponent Shale Oil Flow in Real Kerogen Structures via Molecular Dynamic Simulation

J Liu and Y Zhao and YF Yang and QY Mei and S Yang and CC Wang, ENERGIES, 13, 3815 (2020).

DOI: 10.3390/en13153815

As an unconventional energy source, the development of shale oil plays a positive role in global energy, while shale oil is widespread in organic nanopores. Kerogen is the main organic matter component in shale and affects the flow behaviour in nanoscale-confined spaces. In this work, a molecular dynamic simulation was conducted to study the transport behaviour of shale oil within kerogen nanoslits. The segment fitting method was used to characterise the velocity and flow rate. The heterogeneous density distributions of shale oil and its different components were assessed, and the effects of different driving forces and temperatures on its flow behaviours were examined. Due to the scattering effect of the kerogen wall on high-speed fluid, the heavy components (asphaltene) increased in bulk phase regions, and the light components, such as methane, were concentrated in boundary layers. As the driving force increased, the velocity profile demonstrated plug flow in the bulk regions and a half-parabolic distribution in the boundary layers. Increasing the driving force facilitated the desorption of asphaltene on kerogen walls, but increasing the temperature had a negative impact on the flow velocity.

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