Fluid and Heat Flow In Gas-Rich Geothermal Reservoirs
- M.J. O'Sullivan (U. of Auckland) | G.S. Bodvarsson (U. of Auckland) | K. Pruess (U. of Auckland) | M.R. Blakeley (U. of Auckland)
- Document ID
- Society of Petroleum Engineers
- Society of Petroleum Engineers Journal
- Publication Date
- April 1985
- Document Type
- Journal Paper
- 215 - 226
- 1985. Society of Petroleum Engineers
- 5.6.4 Drillstem/Well Testing, 5.5 Reservoir Simulation, 5.2.1 Phase Behavior and PVT Measurements, 4.1.6 Compressors, Engines and Turbines, 4.1.2 Separation and Treating, 5.2 Reservoir Fluid Dynamics, 5.9.2 Geothermal Resources, 4.3.4 Scale, 5.5.1 Simulator Development, 5.5.8 History Matching, 4.1.5 Processing Equipment
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Numerical simulation techniques are used to study the effects of noncondensable gases (CO2) on geothermal reservoir behavior in the natural state and during exploitation. It is shown that the presence Of CO2 has a large effect on the thermodynamic conditions of a reservoir in the natural state, especially on temperature distributions and phase compositions. The gas will expand two-phase zones phase compositions. The gas will expand two-phase zones and increase gas saturations to enable flow of CO2 through the system. During exploitation, the early pressure drop primarily results from "degassing" of the system. This primarily results from "degassing" of the system. This process can cause a very rapid initial pressure drop, on process can cause a very rapid initial pressure drop, on the order of megapascals, depending on the initial partial pressure of CO2. The flowing gas content from wells can pressure of CO2. The flowing gas content from wells can provide information on in-place gas saturations and provide information on in-place gas saturations and relative permeability curves that apply at a given geothermal resource. Site-specific studies are made for the gas-rich, two-phase reservoir at the Ohaaki geothermal field in New Zealand. A simple lumped-parameter model and a vertical column model are applied to the field data. The results obtained agree well with the natural thermodynamic state of the Ohaaki field (pressure and temperature profiles) and a partial pressure of 1.5 to 2.5 MPa [217 to 363 psi] is calculated in the primary reservoirs. The models also agree reasonably well with field data obtained during exploitation of the field. The treatment of thermophysical properties of H2O/CO2 mixtures for different phase compositions is summarized.
Many geothermal reservoirs contain large amounts of non-condensable gases, particularly CO2. The proportion of noncondensable gas in the produced fluid is an extremely important factor in the design of separators, turbines, heat exchangers, and other surface equipment. In the reservoir itself, the presence of CO2 significantly alters the distribution of temperature and gas saturation (volumetric fraction of gas phase) associated with given heat and mass flows. Therefore, when modeling gas-rich reservoirs it is essential to keep track of the amount of CO2 in each gridblock in addition to the customary fluid and heat content. Several investigators have considered the effects of CO2 on the reservoir dynamics of geothermal systems. A lumped-parameter model using one block for the gas zone and one for the liquid zone was developed by Atkinson et al. for the Bagnore (Italy) reservoir. Preliminary work on the Ohaaki reservoir was carried out by Zyvoloski and O'Sullivan, but these studies were limited because-the thermodynamic package used could only handle two-phase conditions. Generic studies of reservoir depletion and well-test analysis also were made in the previous works. The present study describes the effects of CO2 in geothermal reservoirs in a more complete and detailed way. We emphasize the potential for using the CO2 content in the fluid produced during a well test as a reservoir diagnostic aid, and as a means of gaining information about relative permeability curves.
The aim of the present study is to investigate the effects of CO2 on both the natural state of a reservoir and its behavior under exploitation. Several generic simulation studies are described. First, the effect of CO2 on the depletion of a single-block, lumped-parameter reservoir model is briefly examined. Secondly, the relationship between the mass fraction Of CO2 in the produced fluid and the mass fraction in place in the reservoir is studied. It is demonstrated that in some cases the in-place gas saturation can be determined for a given set of relative permeability curves. Finally, the effects of CO2 on the permeability curves. Finally, the effects of CO2 on the vertical distribution of gas saturation, temperature, and pressure of geothermal reservoirs in the natural state are pressure of geothermal reservoirs in the natural state are investigated. The numerical simulator with the H2O/CO2 thermodynamic package is applied to field data from the Ohaaki (formerly Broadlands) geothermal field in New Zealand.
Two simple models of the 1966-74 large-scale field exploitation test of the Ohaaki reservoir are presented. The first is a single-block, lumped-parameter model similar to those reported earlier by Zyvoloski and O'Sullivan and Grant. In the former work, a less accurate thermodynamic package for H2O/CO2 mixtures is used; the latter uses approximate methods to integrate the mass-, energy-, and CO2-balance equations. The second model described in the present work is a distributed-parameter model, in the form of a vertical column representing the main upflow zone at Ohaaki. This model produces a good fit to the observed distribution of pressure and temperature with depth in the natural state at Ohaaki and a good match to the observed response of the reservoir during 5 years of experimental production and 3 years of recovery.
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