Pore Network Analysis of Resistivity Index for Water-Wet Porous Media

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Pore network analysis is used to investigate the effects of microscopic parameters of the pore structure such as pore geometry, pore-size distribution, pore space topology and fractal roughness porosity on resistivity index curves of strongly water-wet porous media. The pore structure is represented by a three-dimensional network of lamellar capillary tubes with fractal roughness features along their pore-walls. Oil-water drainage (conventional porous plate method) is simulated with a bond percolation-and-fractal roughness model without trapping of wetting fluid. The resistivity index, saturation exponent and capillary pressure are expressed as approximate functions of the pore network parameters by adopting some simplifying assumptions and using effective medium approximation, universal scaling laws of percolation theory and fractal geometry. Some new phenomenological models of resistivity index curves of porous media are derived. Finally, the eventual changes of resistivity index caused by the permanent entrapment of wetting fluid in the pore network are also studied.

Resistivity index and saturation exponent are decreasing functions of the degree of correlation between pore volume and pore size as well as the width of the pore size distribution, whereas they are independent on the mean pore size. At low water saturations, the saturation exponent decreases or increases for pore systems of low or high fractal roughness porosity respectively, and obtains finite values only when the wetting fluid is not trapped in the pore network. The dependence of saturation exponent on water saturation weakens for strong correlation between pore volume and pore size, high network connectivity, medium pore-wall roughness porosity and medium width of the pore size distribution. The resistivity index can be described succesfully by generalized 3-parameter power functions of water saturation where the parameter values are related closely with the geometrical, topological and fractal properties of the pore structure.

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