The next example is on 2 mm thick samples made from an outcrop material, Pierre shale,with about 25% porosity. Some results are shown in Fig.5, where velocity measurementsare performed on samples prepared both parallel and perpendicular to the bedding planewhile the samples are subject to various axial stresses
. The results are consistent withthose attained on larger samples, and basically illustrate two aspects: 1) Directionaldependent, stress sensitive acoustic velocities, and 2) Determination of acoustic and staticmechanical (not shown here) anisotropy from small samples.The final example illustrates how small samples can be utilised to quantify shale-fluidinteraction effects, employing material from a Tertiary Eocene shale. The samples werethin discs, 2 mm in thickness and 10 mm in diameter. After some initial stress cycling, theshale was first exposed to a 3wt% NaCl solution to remove capillary effects. Thereafter, 10wt% KCl was added while the axial load was kept constant. Fig. 6 shows the resultingaxial strain
time for four samples from different parts of the seal peel. Again, theattained results are consistent with what is deduced from advanced triaxial test on ordinary plugs. In case of small samples, however, the tests provide results much faster.
The examples included here illustrate the basic principle that small samples (mm-cm scale)can be used to characterise in particular shales, yielding faster and less expensive resultsthat are consistent with those attained on larger, standard samples tested in triaxial cells.Also drill cuttings may be used when of sufficient quality.
The authors wish to thank BP, Norske Conoco AS, Norsk Agip A/S, Norsk Hydro a.s., andStatoil ASA for providing financial support and sample material. Furthermore, in particular Angelamaria Pillitteri Gotuso and Dag Økland are acknowledged for their contributions.
Nes, O.-M., Horsrud, P., Sønstebø, E.F., Holt, R.M., Ese, A.M., Økland, D., and Kjørholt, H., “Rig-site and laboratory use of CWT acoustic velocity measurements on cuttings”, paper SPE 50892, SPEReservoir Evaluation & Engineering, August 1998.2.
Nes, O.-M., Sønstebø, E.F., Horsrud, P., and Holt, R.M., ”Dynamic and Static Measurements onmm-size Shale Samples”, paper SPE 47200, presented at Eurock’98, Trondheim.
Loading pistonDeformationsensors (3)Ultrasonictransducers(may be omitted)SampleFluidcontainer SupportingframeBearingLoadcellApplied axial load
Table 1. Comparison of Young’s modulus as attainedfrom small samples (SAMSS) and large samples (Triax).Figure 1. Experimental set-up (SAMSS) for measurement of static and dynamic mechanical properties on small samples.