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Proceedings Paper

Synchrotron-based transmission x-ray microscopy for improved extraction in shale during hydraulic fracturing
Author(s): Andrew M. Kiss; Adam D. Jew; Claresta Joe-Wong; Kate M. Maher; Yijin Liu; Gordon E. Brown; John Bargar
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Paper Abstract

Engineering topics which span a range of length and time scales present a unique challenge to researchers. Hydraulic fracturing (fracking) of oil shales is one of these challenges and provides an opportunity to use multiple research tools to thoroughly investigate a topic. Currently, the extraction efficiency from the shale is low but can be improved by carefully studying the processes at the micro- and nano-scale. Fracking fluid induces chemical changes in the shale which can have significant effects on the microstructure morphology, permeability, and chemical composition. These phenomena occur at different length and time scales which require different instrumentation to properly study. Using synchrotron-based techniques such as fluorescence tomography provide high sensitivity elemental mapping and an in situ micro-tomography system records morphological changes with time. In addition, the transmission X-ray microscope (TXM) at the Stanford Synchrotron Radiation Lightsource (SSRL) beamline 6-2 is utilized to collect a nano-scale three-dimensional representation of the sample morphology with elemental and chemical sensitivity. We present the study of a simplified model system, in which pyrite and quartz particles are mixed and exposed to oxidizing solution, to establish the basic understanding of the more complex geology-relevant oxidation reaction. The spatial distribution of the production of the oxidation reaction, ferrihydrite, is retrieved via full-field XANES tomography showing the reaction pathway. Further correlation between the high resolution TXM data and the high sensitivity micro-probe data provides insight into potential morphology changes which can decrease permeability and limit hydrocarbon recovery.

Paper Details

Date Published: 18 September 2015
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 9592, X-Ray Nanoimaging: Instruments and Methods II, 95920O (18 September 2015); doi: 10.1117/12.2190806
Show Author Affiliations
Andrew M. Kiss, SLAC National Accelerator Lab. (United States)
Adam D. Jew, SLAC National Accelerator Lab. (United States)
Stanford Univ. (United States)
Claresta Joe-Wong, Stanford Univ. (United States)
Kate M. Maher, Stanford Univ. (United States)
Yijin Liu, SLAC National Accelerator Lab. (United States)
Gordon E. Brown, SLAC National Accelerator Lab. (United States)
Stanford Univ. (United States)
John Bargar, SLAC National Accelerator Lab. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9592:
X-Ray Nanoimaging: Instruments and Methods II
Barry Lai, Editor(s)

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