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Department of Engineering and Design,

MSc Petroleum Engineering

LAB.REPORT ON PERMEABILITY AND POROSITY


EXPERIMENT

Author:

TOLULOPE AFOLABI (3228764)

Academic Session:

2014/2015

Lecturer:

DR. ELSA ARISTODEMU

Course Moodle:

PETROPHYSICS

Mode of Study:
DATE:

FULL TIME
NOVEMBER 30,2014.

TABLE OF CONTENT
Cover page

------------------------------------

Table of context

------------------------------------

1.0 Introduction

----------------------------------

--------------------------------

1.1 Permeability Measurement

1.2 Aims and objectives


-----------------------------1.3 Experimental equipment
-----------------------------1.4 Experimental procedure and observations --------------------------i.
Experiment one
-------------------------------------------ii.
Experiment two ------------------------------------------------1.5 Experimental results and calculations --------------------------------1.6 Presentation and analysis of result
--------------------------------1.7 Error analysis
-----------------------------------1.8 Conclusion
------------------------------------1.9 References

2.0 Porosity measurement


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16

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2.1 Aim and objectives


------------------------------------------2.2 Experimental apparatus
-----------------------------------------2.3 Experimental procedures and observation ---------------------------2.4 Results and calculations ----------------------------------------------2.5 Discussion
----------------------------------------------2.6 Conclusions
--------------------------------------------2.7 Summary
-------------------------------------------2.8 References
---------------------------------------------Attach notes
-----------------------------------------------

pg. 2

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PERMEABILTY AND POROSITY


1.0 INTRODUCTION :
The topic investigated in this experiment were permeability determination of a porous media and
its porosity, permeability is a measure of how well a porous media allows the flow of fluids
through it, Permeability and porosity forms the two major characteristics of reservoir rocks. A
reservoir rock must have the ability to allow petroleum fluids to flow through its interconnected
pores. Permeability is an indication of the porous mediums ability to permit fluid flow.
Permeability and porosity forms the two major characteristics of reservoir rocks. A reservoir rock
must have the ability to allow petroleum fluids to flow through its interconnected pores. The
permeability of a porous medium is a measure of its resistance to the flow of a fluid through it.
The fluid may be a liquid or a gas. However, the only fluid used in this experiment was water.
The majority of the work was based on using sand as the permeable material.
Basically, permeability could be of three types: absolute permeability, relative permeability and
effective permeability. The relative permeability of the oil, gas and water would be;
kro = ko/k,

krg = kg/k, and krw = kw/k respectively. This describes the extent to which the

fluids hinder one another.


Where:
kro is the relative permeability of the oil

(Dimensionless)

ko is the effective permeability of the oil

(Darcy)

k is the absolute permeability of the phase in question

(Darcy)

krg is the relative permeability of the gas

(Dimensionless)

kg is the effective permeability of the gas

(Darcy)

krw is the relative permeability of the water

(Dimensionless)

kw is the effective permeability of the water

(Darcy)

The equation that defines permeability in terms of measurable quantities is Darcys law. This
equation is given by:
Q=

AK P
(1)
L

Where:
Q is the flow rate

(cm3/s)

K is permeability

(Darcy)

pg. 3

(cm2)

is the cross sectional area of bed

P is the pressure drop

(atm)

is the viscosity of the fluid


L is the length of the bed

(cP)
(cm)

The above equation can be transposed for the permeability K as:


K=

QL
A P

(2)

Darcy equation can be written individually for each fluid/phase that flows in the pore as:
Qi =

A Pi
( Kkri
i ) L

(3)
Where :
Qi = flow rate of phase i
K = absolute permeability of medium
Kri = the viscosity of the phase i
P = pressure drop
L = length of the medium
A = cross sectional area of medium

(cm3/s)
(mD)
(cP)
(atm)
(cm)
(cm2)

Porosity of a rock is the fraction of the volume of space between the solid
particles of the rock to the total rock volume. The space includes all pores,
cracks, vugs, inter- and intra-crystalline spaces.The porosity is conventionally
given the symbol , and is expressed either as a fraction varying between
0 and 1, or a percentage varying between 0% and 100%. Sometimes
porosity is expressed in porosity units, which are the same as percent (i.e.,
100 porosity units (pu) = 100%).
Reservoirs with high porosity indicate abundant fluids in their pore spaces while those with low
porosity indicates low capacity to hold fluids.
Knowledge of two basic reservoir properties; porosity and permeability is essential in order to
know the types of fluids, amount of fluids, rates of fluid flow and fluid recovery estimates (Tiab
and Donaldson, 2012). In addition, porosity can be use quantitatively when it comes to
calculating oil reservoir content volumetrically.
Types of porosity are Primary porosity, Secondary, total and effective porosity.
Porosity can be calculated as the pore volume of the rock divided by its bulk volume.
=Pore volume/bulk volume
(Vp/V b)
=V bV m/V b=V p/V b

pg. 4

Porosity can be measured directly or indirectly but this laboratory measurement of core samples
is a direct measurement which is generally considered to be reliable and accurate and it requires
measurement of pore volume and bulk volume.
The bulk volume is usually estimated by volumetric or gravimetric method, volumetric method
measures the volume of displaced liquid by a rock sample when completely immersed in liquid
and the gravimetric method is the mass of the sample when immersed in a known density liquid.
For this experiment, three plugs extracted from sandstone core sample with known
permeabilities (50mD, 100mD and 500mD) were used to carry out a direct measurement of
porosity using the gravimetric and volumetric method.
The experiment in details
1.1 PERMEABILITY MEASUREMENT
1.2 AIMS AND OBJECTIVES:
The objectives of the laboratory practical were to determine the absolute permeability of sand in
porous media, and to determine the relative permeability of multi-phase flow (water and oil)
using darcy and corey equations
This experiment was important because knowledge of it would show how well a porous media
allows fluids to flow through it, and as petroleum engineers, one of the interest in reservoir rocks
is how easily petroleum will flow through them to the wellbore from where they are transported
to the surface.
1.3 EXPERIMENTAL EQUIPMENT
In order to carry out the experiment, a permeability/fluidisation studies apparatus manufactured
and supplied by Armfield (ltd) was used. See figure 1 below.

pg. 5

Manomet
er
Flow
meter
Packed bed sand
medium

Thermometer

Figure 1: Picture of experimental equipment


1.4 EXPERIMENTAL PROCEDURE AND OBSERVATIONS
i.
EXPERIMENT ONE
Part A
Flow rates were varied (not above 500 cm3/min, so as not to cause fluidisation) and the
corresponding pressure drops were recorded.
At the beginning of the experiment, all the valves were kept closed and then the pump was
switched on. At a point, a trickle from the overflow pipe indicated a constant water level in the
overhead tank, the experiment was started. Keeping the inlet and outlet valves closed, the
manometer valves were opened.
The drain tube from valve 4 was inserted into a beaker placed on the water tank to prevent any of
the bed material that passed through the sieve returning to the system. A thermometer was then
placed in the beaker to indicate the water temperature, and the temperature read after which bed
height (L) was recorded along with the water & mercury manometer zero levels.
Valves 1 and 4 were opened to admit water through the column in a down flow direction.
Valve 1 was then used to adjust the flow rate (Q) and the manometer levels were both recorded
for the various flow rate.
The temperature was recorded at the beginning of the experiment and at the end of the
experiment to obtain the water average temperature.
Part B
pg. 6

We didnt carry out this experiment but experimental data were given for pressure drop and flow
rates for two fluids; oil and water at different saturations. Here the two fluids were injected
simultaneously in the cylinder of the sand sample which was assumed to be the same sample
used in part one.
ii EXPERIMENT TWO
This type of permeability is absolute. For this experiment, the bed heights were varied at
different flowrates. In this case, the sand samples were poured into a measuring cylinder to
various heights (125mm, 215mm and 305m), with known density of the fluid (water) the
difference in fluid pressures were calculated from h1 h2.
In both cases, it was observed that the differential pressure increased with increase in flowrate
which is in agreement with Darcys law.
1.5 EXPERIMENTAL RESULTS AND CALCULATIONS:
The experimental results and calculated results shown in tables below.
Table1. Experimental results for absolute permeability determination
No of
Flow rate
P1 (mmH2O)
P2 (mmH2O)
P (mmH2O)
Runs
(cm3/min)
1
50
245
268
23
2
100
230
286
56
3
150
214
305
91
4
200
194
327
112
5
250
183
340
140
6
300
163
364
201
7
350
148
383
236
8
400
125
407
282
9
450
101
436
335
10
500
83
459
376

Table2. Measured values and calculation of results (Glass beads)


Length of the bed (cm)
Diameter of the bed (cm)
Area of the bed (cm2)
Average temperature (C)
Pressure at zero flow rate (mmH2O)
Permeability (Darcy)
Gradient of graph

31.5
3.8
11.34
22.5
P1 = 248
P2 = 268
0.591D
4.74 *10-3 atm/cm3/s

Table 3. Calculated results for absolute permeability determination.


No of run
Flow rate
P1
P2
P
K

pg. 7

(cm3/s)
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10

(* 10-3 atm)

(* 10-3 atm)

(*10-3 atm)

0.83

23.71

25.38

1.67

1.66

1.67

22.26

27.68

5.42

0.51

2.5

20.71

29.51

8.8

0.32

3.33

18.78

31.65

12.87

0.22

4.17

17.71

32.9

15.19

0.18

15.78

35.22

19.44

0.14

5.83

14.32

37.06

22.74

0.12

6.67

12.09

39.39

27.3

0.102

7.5

9.77

42.19

32.42

0.086

8.33

8.03

44.42

36.39

0.076

(Darcy)

45
40
35
30
25

Pressure gradient (* 10-3 atm) 20


15
10
5
0
0

Flow rate (cm3/s)


Figure 2: Graph of pressure gradient against flow rate
CALCULATIONS:

pg. 8

(a)
(i)

Experiment 1 (absolute permeability determination) as shown in the table and


graph above
Change in pressure P: When P1 = 245 mmH2O and P2 = 268 mmH2O

Therefore,

P h2 h1 268 245 23mm( H 2O)

To convert change in pressure from mmH2O to atm.


Therefore 23mmH2O can be written as

P .g.h

(ii)

1000 9.81 23 10 3
22.56 10 3 atm
100000

cm 3 / sec

Converting from cm /min to


100cm3 / min
Q
1.67cm3 / sec
60 sec/ min
Gradient =
(iii)

Change pressure drop( atm)


Change flow rate(c m3 /seconds)

Gradient of the graph in figure 1:

( P)
Q

: For example when Q = 100cm3/min

( 32.428.8 )103
7.552.5

= 4.7 * 10-3 atm/cm3/s

Absolute permeability: Using equation 2:

K=

L
A P

Where:
= 1 cP, Length of bed (L) = 315 mm = 31.5cm, Diameter of bed (d) = 38mm = 3.8cm Area

d 2 3.14 (3.8) 2

11.34cm 2
4
4

of bed,
L

L
K

A P A Gradient

1
31.5
11.34 4.7 10 3

591millidarcy
= 0.59 Darcy

Table 4. Calculated results for relative permeability determination using Coreys law.
Case

Qw(cc/s)

Qo(cc.s)

P (atm)

kw

krw

ko

kro

80%W, 20% O

0.03

189.12

0.316

2.36

0.004

60% W, 40% O

0.05

37.23

0.063

114.65

0.197

40%W, 60% O

0.06

2.36

0.004

301.41

0.51

20% W,80% O

0.08

591

pg. 9

1.2

No oil
flows

No
water
flows

0.8

Relative permeability krw, kro

0.6
krw
Kro
0.4

Residual
oil
saturati

0.2

0
10

Irreduc
ible
water
saturati

20

30

40

50

60

70

80

90

Water saturation sw (%)

Figure 3: Relative permeability curve for oil and water using Coreys law

(b)(i) Test 2; Sample calculations for Relative permeability using Coreys law; table and
graph are shown above
Equation for relative permeability of oil,
1Sw 4
Kro = 1Swc

From the table Sw = 0.8, Swc = 0.2


10.8
Kro = ( 10.2
= 0.004
4
Effective permeability of oil Ko = Kro *K
Where Kro = 0.004, K= 591mD
0.004*591= 2.364
Equation for relative permeability of water , Krw=

pg. 10

SwSwc
1Swc

Krw =

0.80.2 4
=0.32
10.2

Effective permeability of water Kw = Krw *K


Where Krw = 0.32, K= 591mD
0.32*591= 189.12

Table 5. Calculated results of relative permeability using Darcy Law

Case

Qw(cc/s)

Qo(cc.s)

P (atm)

kw

krw

ko

kro

80%W, 20% O

0.03

463.0

0.78

463.0

0.78

60% W, 40% O

0.05

222.2 0.376 416.7

0.71

40%W, 60% O

0.06

138.9 0.235 463.0

0.78

20% W,80% O

0.08

69.44 0.118 434.0

0.73

0.9
0.8
0.7
0.6

Relative permeability krw, kro 0.5


0.4

Krw

0.3

kro

0.2
0.1
0
10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90

Water saturation sw (%)

Figure 4: Relative permeability curve for oil and water using Darcys law

pg. 11

(b)(ii) Relative permeability using Darcys law as shown in the table and graph above
Kkri A Pi
Equation for Qi =
i
L

( )

Transposing for

Kri=

Qi i L
K A P

Permeability of water phase for run 1, Krw=

5 1 31.5
=0.78
591 11.34 0.03

Kw = Krw K
Kw = 0.78 591 =463mD
Permeability of oil p h ase for run 1, Kro=

2 2.5 31.5
=0.78
591 11.34 0.03

Kw = Krw K
Kw = 0.78 591 = 463mD

Table 6: Experimental results for second permeability experiment

L (mm)
125

P1 (mmH2O)

P2 (mmH2O)

P (mmH2O)

80

68

12

72

58

15

Flowrate
(cm3/min)
80
100

120
65
55
20
215
70
50
20
80
82
59
23
100
96
66
30
120
305
79
47
32
80
75
36
35
100
64
25
39
120
Table 7, calculated results for absolute permeability determination for second permeability
experiment

pg. 12

L
H1
H2
P
Flowrate
P
K
K
P(m)
3
(cm) (cmH2O) (cmH2O) (cmH2O) (cm /sec)
(atm) (mD) (Darcy)
12.
5

80

68

12

1.33

0.12

0.01
2

94.5
8

0.0946

75.6
7

0.0757

12.
5

72

58

15

1.66

0.15

0.01
5

12.
5

65

55

20

0.20

0.01
9

56.7
5

0.0567

21.
5

70

50

20

1.33

0.20

0.01
9

97.6
1

0.098

0.23

0.02
2

84.8
8

0.085

65.0
7

0.065
0.086

21.
5

82

59

23

1.66

21.
5

96

66

30

0.30

0.02
9

30.
5

79

47

32

1.33

0.32

0.03
1

86.5
4

0.03
4
0.03
8

79.1
3
71.0
1

30.
5
30.
5

75

36

35

1.66

0.35

64

25

39

0.39

0.079
0.071

Figure 5: Graph of pressure gradient against flow rate

(b) Experiment 2 (varying bed heights)


(i)
Calculation of difference in fluid pressure:
Density of the fluid (1000kg/m3), pressure gradient can be calculated from
Where

(ii)

P .g.h

= 1000kg/m3,
g = 9.81m/s2 h = h1 h2 = (80 68)cm = 12cm = 0.12m
10009.810.12
P=
=12103 atm
100000
Absolute permeability: Using equation 2:

K=

L
A P

Where:
= 1 cP, Length of bed (L) = 125mm = 12.5cm, Diameter of bed (d) = 38mm = 3.8cm and
gradient for L=12.5 is 0.0116 as displayed in figure 5
pg. 13

d 2 3.14 (3.8) 2

11.34cm 2
4
4

Area of bed,
L

L
K

A P A Gradient

1
12.5
11.34 11.6 10 3

95.03 millidarcy
= 0.0953 Darcy

Same calculation for when L=21.5cm and L=30.5cm

1.6 PRESENTATION AND ANALYSIS OF RESULT:


In figure 1, as the flow rate increases, there was corresponding increase in the pressure gradient
as observed, one can deduce a direct correlation and relationship between flow rate and pressure
difference. This can also be seen from table 3 when the flow rate was 0.83 cm 3/sec (50 cm3/min),
the pressure gradient was 1.67 atm. (23 mm H 2O), also when the flow rate was increased to 1.67
cm3/s (100 cm3/min), pressure gradient increased to 5.42 atm.(56 mmH 2O) which was
consistence throughout the experiment, pressure gradient increased to 5.42 atm. (56 mm H2O)
giving rise to a straight line plot of pressure gradient against flow as shown in figure 1.
In table 3 and 7, as the pressure gradient increases, there was a reduction in permeability. This is
in support of the assumption on absolute permeability of porous medium is independent of the
fluid used. It must be noted, that this assumption will only be true, if viscous flow prevail. That is
the rate of the flowing fluid is sufficiently low to be directly proportional to the potential gradient
(Honarpour and Mahmood, 1988).

In part B; relative permeability determination, it was observed that relative permeability is a


function of saturation of the phases present in the medium unlike the case of absolute
permeability where the pores of the medium are 100% saturated with a particular type of fluid.

It can be seen from the relative permeability curve in figure 3 that the relative permeability of the
sand medium to water was sharply decreasing when the water saturation was reduced. This could
be due to the occupation of the larger pores or flow paths by the oil phase; that is the water phase
has been displaced by the oil phase.

When this happens, it is said that a wet fluid has been displaced by a non-wetting fluid, and this
process is called drainage. The relative permeability in figure 3 curve also shows that the
relative permeability of the oil phase approaches unity whereas that for the water phase is
restricted. Thus at the same saturation, the value of the oil phase relative permeability was
greater than that of the water phase.

pg. 14

Referring to figure 4, a relative permeability curve was plotted for the values of the relative
permeabilities of oil and water versus water saturation calculated using Darcys law. It can be
seen that there was a similar sort of behaviour for the water phase but not for the oil phase, this
infers that Darcys law is not suitable when the flow is not a single phase flow.
For the second experiment where the bed heights were varied, at a particular flowrate with
varying bed height, there was an increase in the differential pressure (P), this can be seen in
table 7, when the flowrate was 1.33cm3/s at a bed height of 12.50cm, the differential pressure
was 0.012atm compared to when the flowrate was still 1.33cm3/s with a bed height of 21. 50cm
where the differential pressure was 0.019atm. This follows through when the flowrate remained
the same but at a bed height of 30.50cm where the differential pressure increased to 0.031atm.
At a particular bed height with increased flowrate, the differential pressure also increased
accordingly too. In terms of the permeability, comparing both permeabilities obtained from both
experiments; the one in the first experiment were the bed height was constant was higher than
the second experiment were the bed heights were varied. The reason for this could be that the
first experiment could be likened to highly compacted sandstones while the second one could be
likened to low compacted sandstone sandstones,
From the experiment, the absolute permeability of the sand porous media for the first experiment
(when the bed height was kept constant) was estimated to be 591millidarcy. When the bed
heights were varied, the estimated absolute permeability carried accordingly. For bed height of
12.5 cm, the absolute permeability was 95.02millidarcy, for bed height of 21.5cm, the absolute
permeability was 130.75 millidarcy, for bed height of 30.5cm, and the absolute permeability was
263.69millidarcy. In addition, it was found that the values of permeability for the second
experiment were smaller than those ones for the first experiment.
It was also found that using Coreys law, a relative permeability curve can be drawn for fluids
(oil and water) flowing through a porous media. Based on the curve, it was found that relative
permeability is saturation dependent. The proportional relationship between the flow rate,
viscosity, length of rock bed sample, permeability, cross sectional area of the rock bed sample
and the pressure was observed.
1.7 ERROR ANALYSIS:
The following errors could have arosen in this experiment;
(1) Systematic error: The packed sand bed may not be representative of the reservoir rock
because reservoir rocks are not homogeneous rather they are heterogeneous.
(2) Human and random error: There may be a temptation to select the best parts of the sand
medium for testing and also inability to take accurate reading on the manometer
(3) Systematic error; The permeability of the sand medium may be altered probably when they
were gotten from the original sample, or even when they were cleaned and packed
1.8 CONCLUSION:
At the end of this experiment, the following conclusions can be drawn:
(i)
For absolute permeability determination, the medium must be 100% saturated with a
particular type of fluid.

pg. 15

(ii)

The higher the permeability, the easier it will be for fluids to flow and, hence the higher the
production rate from a particular well (OPITO, 2011). The permeable material that was

(iii)

used in this lab was a packed bed medium of sand


Absolute permeability does not depend on the properties of the flowing fluid; it only
depends on the properties of the medium.

(iv)

The quality of a reservoir as determined by permeability in millidarcy (mD) may be judged as poor
if k < 1, fair if 1< k < 10, moderate if 10 < k < 50, good if 50 < k < 250 and very good if k > 250
mD. Since there was a permeability of 50mD and above for sand samples from the experiment, it
will make a good reservoir

(v)

During the flow of fluid through a porous medium, there is proportional relationship
between the flow rate and the pressure gradient.
Relative permeability is dependent on the saturation of the different phases in the medium.
There is a proportional relationship between flow rate, viscosity, length of rock bed
sample, permeability, cross sectional area of the rock bed sample and pressure gradient.

(vi)
(vii)

1.9 REFERENCES
Honarpour, M and Mahmood, S.M. (1988) Relative-Permeability Measurements: an Overview.
Journal of Petroleum Technology. Vol.40, No. 8. Texas: Society of Petroleum Engineers.
pp 963-966
Aristodemu, E. (2014) lab notes for permeability measurement.
Ekwere, J.P (2012) Advanced petrophysics ; geology, porosity, absolute permeability,
Heterogeneity and geostatistics. Vol 3 1st ed. Live Oak Book Company. Chapter three
Tarek, A. (2010) Reservoir Engineering Handbook. 4th ed. Oxford: Elsevier Inc. Chapter 4 & 5.
Tiab, D and Donaldson, E.C. (2012) Petrophysics: theory and practice of measuring reservoir
rock and fluid transport properties. 3rd ed. Oxford: Gulf Professional Publishing. Chapter 3.
OPITO (2011) Oil Well Drilling Technology Workbook: Petroleum Open Learning. Aberden:
OPITO.

pg. 16

pg. 17

2.0

POROSITY MEASURMENT

2.1 AIM AND OBJECTIVES


The main objective of this laboratory work was to estimate some porosity data (bulk volume and
pore volume) and ultimately used them to calculate the porosity for the different samples
provided, using three core samples that were given and calculating the porosity employing the
method of direct measurement and using the buoyancy method by applying Archimedes
principle.
2.2 EXPERIMENTAL EQUIPMENT AND FUNCTIONS
The following equipment were used in carrying out the experiment:
Vernier Caliper: to measure the length and diameter of the plug sample, calibrated in inches
and millimetres
Electronic balance: to weigh the samples, samples were taken in grammes
Beaker containing distilled water to saturate core samples
Clamp: to aid the immersing of samples into beaker containing distilled water (the mass of
the beaker, water, and metal wire was subtracted by using the balance tare)
Vacuum chamber accelerator: to displace air in the samples
Saturated cloth or tissue: to dry any excess fluid from the saturated sample before being
weighed
dessicator

Vacuum chamber
Fig.3 Picture of vaccum chamber connected to dessicator
pg. 18

2.49cm
2.49cm
0.248c

EXPERIMEN

K = 50mD

2.3

5.03cm

5.07 cm

5.19cm

K = 100mD

K = 500mD

Figure 4 Drawing of Core Samples


EXPERIMENTAL PROCEDURES AND OBSERVATION

For the geometric estimation of the bulk volume:


The diameter and length of the three (3) cylindrical core samples (K = 50mD, K = 100mD, K =
500mD) were taken using a Vernier calliper which was calibrated in inches. The values gotten
were then converted to centimeters (cm) using the relationship below
1 inch = 2.54 cm
For instance, the diameter recorded for K50 was 0.981inch, conversion to cm equal 0.981*2.54=
2.49cm, this was applicable for all the length measurements.
The volume of the core samples was calculated using the volume of a cylinder given below
2
Volume of core sample = r h
Where r = radius of the core sample = diameter /2
h = height (in this case, it is the length of core sample)
= 3.14

pg. 19

For estimation of the pore volume:


The three (3) core dry samples were each weighed using a digital mass spectrometer to
determine their masses, the masses were recorded in gramme as dry sample mass after which
they were then saturated with distilled water. This was done by placing the core samples in a
beaker containing distilled water; the beaker was then placed in a vacuum chamber so as to
accelerate the displacement of the air in the rock by water, this is called imbitions. After
saturation, the core samples were again weighed to determine the saturated sample mass.
The mass of water in the pore was then calculated using the formula below:
Mass of water porethe pore volume , M w=Saturated sample mass dry sample mass
While the pore volume was calculated using the relationship below:
Pore volume = Mass of water porethe pore volume
density of water
Where density of water, = 1.0g/cm3
The porosity of each of the samples was also determined using equation 1.
Estimation of the bulk volume by buoyancy
In this method, A metal wire was suspended from a clamp and placed in a beaker containing
water, then both beaker and suspended wire was placed on the mass spectrometer. The
combined mass of the beaker and the wire was zeroed using the balance tare. Each of the
samples was then placed on the suspended wire and their individual masses recorded. While
doing this, it was ensured that the core samples do not touch the body of the beaker as this could
affect the readings. The bulk volume of each of the sample was then computed by dividing their
masses by the density of water (density of water, = 1.0g/cm3).
2.4 RESULTS AND CALCULATIONS
SAMPLE CALCULATIONS
i Geometrical Estimate of the Bulk Volume, (Vb) as shown in table 1 below
To calculate the volume of the three (3) core cylindrical samples, the formula for the volume of a
cylinder is used. This is given below
2
Volume of a cylinder = r h
Where:
Where r = radius = diameter/2
h = height (in this case length)
For the K = 50mD, the bulk volume, (Vb (k50)), was calculated as
2.49 2
V b ( k 50 )=3.142
5.07
2

( )

= 25.49cm3
Same procedure was repeated for the other two samples
Table 1: Geometrical Estimation of the Bulk Volume
Sample
Diameter
Diameter
Length
Length
pg. 20

Volume

(inches)

(cm)

(inches)

(cm)

(cm3)

50mD

0.981

2.49

2.0461

5.19

25.49

100mD

1.0131

2.57

1.998

5.07

26.52

500mD

0.981

2.49

1.979

5.03

24.70

.
iiEstimation of the Pore Volume, (Vp) as ahown in table 2
To do this, the mass of water (Mw) in the pore volume was first calculated, is calculated using the
formula below:
M w=Saturated sample mass Dry sample mass
For sample K = 50,
Mw = 56.91g 52.70 = 3.72g
Same procedure was repeated for the other two samples
To
calculate
for
the
volume
of
the
pore
(Vp)
the mass of water the pore volume /density of water = 3.72g/1.0g cm-3 = 3.72cm3
Then porosity was estimated as
,=V p /V b
Where Vb = bulk volume for sample
For example, for sample K = 50,
= 3.72cm3/25.49.52 cm3
= 0.164 or 16.4%
Same procedure was repeated for the other two samples
Table 2: Estimation of the Pore Volume
Sample
Dry sample Saturated
mass (g)
sample mass
(g)
50mD
52.70
56.42
100mD
52.22
55.91
500mD
48.60
52.83

Mass
of Volume of Porosity
water (g)
water (cm3)
3.72
3.69
4.23

3.72
3.69
4.23

0.146
0.139
0.171

iii
Estimation of the bulk volume by Buoyancy as shown in table 3
The bulk volume (Vb) from the buoyancy mass of displaced water was calculated using
V b=buoyancy mass of displaced water /density of water
Where density of water, = 1.0g cm-3
For sample K = 50mD
Vb = 24.93g/1.0g cm-3 = 24.93cm3
pg. 21

While the porosity was calculated as


Porosity ,=volume of pore/volume of bulk
For sample K = 50
= 3.72cm3/24.93cm3
= 0.149 or 14.9%
Same procedure was repeated for the other two samples.
Table 3: Estimation of the Bulk Volume by Buoyancy
Sample
Bouyancy mass of Bulk volume (cm3)
displaced water (g)

Porosity

50 md

24.93

24.93

0.149

100 md

24.76

24.76

0.149

500 md

24.17

24.17

0.175

2.5 DISCUSSION
From calculations done in the experiment carried out, it was observed that the bulk volumes of
the core samples estimated using the two methods that is calculations using direct core
measurements and the buoyancy method are not exactly the same, for K= 50mD and K=500mD
the differences in their measurements are of negligible values while K= 100mD has a difference
of 1.76cm3 as shown in table 4 below
Table 4: Comparing bulk volumes estimated by different methods
Sample
Bulk volume Estimated By Bulk volume Estimated by
Direct Measurement (cm3)
Buoyancy (cm3)
K = 50mD
25.49
24.93
K = 100mD
26.52
24.76
K = 500mD
24.70
24.17
The inconsistency in the result could be due to experimental errors. From theory, porosity
experiments require that the sample are saturated in vacuum desiccator for up to an hour, for this
experiment however the saturation period lasted for only 20minutes.
Despite discrepancies with bulk volume figures, the extrapolated porosity from both
experimental methods are approximately the same for the three samples using the buoyancy
method. This can be seen table 5 as shown below

pg. 22

Table 5: Comparing porosities estimated by different methods


Sample
Porosity Estimated By Porosity Estimated
Direct Measurement (%)
Buoyancy (%)
K = 50mD
14.6
14.9
K = 100mD
13.9
14.9
K = 500mD
17.1
17.5

by

On a theoretical basis, sample K = 500mD has an average porosity of 0.173, K = 100mD (0.144)
and K= 50 (0.148), the reduction of porosity of these samples could be as result of compaction,
the cementation of the rock sample and the degree of saturation.
Theoretically, another reason for the discrepancy in the values of the porosity obtained by direct
measurement and that obtained by the buoyancy method is because the buoyancy method
measures effective or connected porosity as it depends on the saturation of the rock samples with
a fluid.
In practical situations, the buoyancy (Archimedes) method of estimating bulk volume could be
accurate in better quality rocks if effective pore spaces can be completely saturated. On the other
hand, in poorer quality rocks, it could be difficult to completely saturate the sample. In addition,
saturating fluid may react with minerals in the core (e.g. swelling clays).
Variations in grain packing could lead core samples not to have the type of regular shape that
may give more accuracy to the direct measurement method.
2.6 CONCLUSIONS
At the end of the experiment, the following conclusions can be drawn:
Geometric method of bulk volume estimation for porosity determination can be
effectively applied for regularly shaped cores.
Comparing the direct measurement (geometric) method and the buoyancy method, it can
be concluded that the buoyancy method could be more accurate. This is because, the
direct measurement or geometric method can only be effectively applied for regularly
shaped cores or core plugs, and this does not paint a true picture of the shapes of the
various core samples that can be encountered in the Field or lab in real life.
For the gravimetric or buoyancy method, it could be more accurate in better quality rocks
if effective pore spaces can be completely saturated. Otherwise, in poorer quality rocks, it
could be difficult to completely saturate the samples.
The inconsistency between both methods of bulk volume estimation can be negligible
since they are not too much.
Even though the 500mD sample had a higher porosity than the 50mD and 100mD, there
is still lack of correspondence between these two important reservoir properties; porosity
and permeability.

pg. 23

The porosity data obtained in this experiment varied as a result of factors such as
cementation, particle shape and sizes which made the 500mD sample had a higher
porosity than 50mD and 100mD samples.
The 500mD sample with a porosity value of 17.1% (for volumetric estimate) and 17.5.
3% (for the buoyancy method) has a higher capacity to store or contain fluids (oil, gas,
and water) than the 50mD and 100mD samples.

2.7 SUMMARY
Porosity data are very important to Petroleum Engineers as they are used to classify reservoirs
and to estimate the potential volume of hydrocarbons in a reservoir. Thus reservoirs with high
porosity indicate abundant fluids in their pore spaces while those with low porosity indicates low
capacity to hold fluids.
From the experiment, it was found that Sample K = 500mD has a porosity of 0.173 K = 100mD
and K= 50mD has almost same porosity; 0.148 and 0.144 respectively. This shows K= 500mD
has the capacity to store fluids than the others. After a careful laboratory study of these samples,
it can be concluded that sample K = 500mD is more porous than the other samples.
Also the 500mD sample had a higher porosity than the 50mD and 100mD samples, there is
actually no specifically defined relationship between porosity and permeability, although there
could be a qualitative relationship between both properties but not quantitative.
According to Diab and Donaldson (2012), it is possible to have a very high porosity without
having any permeability at all, as in the case of pumice stone (where the effective porosity is
nearly zero), and also in clays and shales
2.8 REFERENCES
Aristodemu, E. (2014) lab notes for porosity measurement.
Cone, M. P., and Kersey, D. G. (1992) Porosity: Part 5. Laboratoy Methods. AAPG. [Online]
Available from: http://archives.datapages.com/data/specpubs/
Ekwere, J.P (2012) Advanced petrophysics ; geology, porosity, absolute permeability,
Heterogeneity and geostatistics. Vol 3 1st ed. Live Oak Book Company. Chapter three
Schlumberger
Oil
Field
Glossary
(2012).
[Online]
Available
from:
http://www.glossary.oilfield.slb.com/en/Terms/p/porosity.aspx
[accessed 4th
November 2014]. Tiab, D., and Donaldson, E.C. (2012) Petrophysics: theory and practice of
measuring reservoir rock and fluid transport properties. 3rd ed. Oxford: Gulf Professional
Publishing.

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