EGEL
Energy GeoEngineering Laboratory

Sanchez_2018

Coupled Numerical Modeling of Gas Hydrate-Bearing Sediments: From Laboratory to Field-Scale Analyses

Sánchez, M., Santamarina, J.C., Teymouri, M and Gai, X (2018).​​ Coupled Numerical Modeling of Gas Hydrate-Bearing Sediments: From Laboratory to Field-Scale Analyses​. Journal of Geophysical Research: Solid Earth, vol 123
Sánchez, M., Santamarina, J.C., Teymouri, M and Gai, X
Hydrate bearing sediments, numerical modellig
2018
Methane hydrates are ice-like compounds made of gas methane and water. Hydrates are stable
under low-temperature and high-pressure conditions constraining their occurrence in sediments to marine
and permafrost settings. A shift from the stability condition triggers an endothermic hydrate dissociation
with the associated release of gas and water, impacting (among others) on sediment pore pressure,
temperature, and deformations. Therefore, the behavior of hydrate-bearing sediments (HBS) is controlled by
strongly coupled thermo-hydro-chemo-mechanical actions. The analysis of available data from past field
and laboratory experiments and the optimization of future field production studies require a formal and
robust numerical framework able to capture the complex behavior of this type of soil. In this paper we used a
fully coupled thermo-hydro-mechanical framework to study different problems involving HBS, from
laboratory experiments involving natural hydrate samples to gas production tests. We also develop an
analytical solution for the case of gas production via radial depressurization from a confined HBS reservoir.
The analyses show the complexity of the thermo-hydro-mechanical phenomena associated with this type of
system and contribute to better understand the behavior of HBS.