Evaluation of porosity change during chemo-mechanical compaction in flooding experiments on Liège outcrop chalk
Wenxia Wang, Merete V. Madland, Udo Zimmermann, Anders Nermoen, Reidar I. Korsnes, Silvana R. A. Bertolino, Tania Hildebrand-Habel, 2018. "Evaluation of porosity change during chemo-mechanical compaction in flooding experiments on Liège outcrop chalk", Reservoir Quality of Clastic and Carbonate Rocks: Analysis, Modelling and Prediction, P. J. Armitage, A. R. Butcher, J.M. Churchill, A.E. Csoma, C. Hollis, R. H. Lander, J. E. Omma, R. H. Worden
Download citation file:
The mechanical strength, porosity and permeability of chalk are affected by chemical and mineralogical changes induced by fluids that are chemically out of equilibrium with the host rock. Here, two high-porosity Upper Cretaceous chalk cores from Liège were tested at effective stresses beyond yield at 130°C during flooding with MgCl2 and NaCl brines. Core L1 (flooded by MgCl2 brine) deformed more than L2 (flooded with NaCl brine), with volumetric strains of 9.4% and 5.1%, respectively. The porosity losses estimated from strain measurements alone are 5.82% for L1 and 3.01% for L2. However, this approach does not account for dissolution and precipitation reactions. Porosity calculations that are based on strain measurements in combination with (i) the weight difference between saturated and dry cores and (ii) the solid density measurement before and after flooding show an average porosity reduction of 3.69% between the two methods for L1. This discrepancy was not observed for core L2 (with the NaCl brine). The rock and effluent chemistry show that Ca2+ dissolved and Mg2+ is retained within the core for the L1 experiment. Therefore, accurate porosity calculations in chalk cores that are flooded by non-equilibrium brines (e.g. MgCl2) require both the volumetric strain and chemical alteration to be considered.