Advances in Earth Science ›› 2014, Vol. 29 ›› Issue (11): 1242-1249. doi: 10.11867/j.issn.1001-8166.2014.11.1242

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Research Progress in Shale Nanopores

Panpan Zhang 1, 2( ), Xiaoping Liu 1, 2( ), Yajie Wang 3, Xuejiao Sun 4   

  1. 1. College of Geosciences, China University of Petroleum, Beijing 102249, China
    2. State Key Laboratory of etroleum Resources and Prospecting, China University of Petroleum, Beijng 102249, China
    3. Research Institute of Petroleum Exploration and Development, Dagang Oilfield Company, CNPC, Tianjin 300280, China
    4. The Fifth Oil Production Plant, Dagang Oilfield Company, CNPC, Tianjin 300280, China
  • Online:2014-11-27 Published:2014-11-20

Panpan Zhang, Xiaoping Liu, Yajie Wang, Xuejiao Sun. Research Progress in Shale Nanopores[J]. Advances in Earth Science, 2014, 29(11): 1242-1249.

With the rise of shale oil and gas exploration and great success of North American shale oil and gas development in recent years, the study of gas shale reservoir pores gets more and more attention. The pore diameters of shale reservoirs are mainly in nano-scale which are different from conventional reservoirs, and they can not be evaluated by conventional methods. On the basis of the research on the classification of shale pore types and nanopore characterization techniques, qualitative and quantitative nanopore characterization methods were classified and summarized. In addition, the advantages and disadvantages of various methods as well as application scopes were summarized. Qualitative characterization methods can obtain the morphologic information, connectivity and filling conditions of shale pores directly by focused ion beam milling scanning electron microscopy, field emission scanning electron microscopy, transmission electron microscopy, broad ion beam scanning electron microscope, atomic force microscope and Nano-CT. Quantitative characterization methods can measure pore diameters, pore distribution and specific surface area by nitrogen adsorption experiments, carbon dioxide adsorption experiments, mercury injection experiments, small-angle neutron scattering, and nuclear magnetic resonance. The factors that control nanopore developments and the effects of nanopore on shale gas accumulation were discussed. The nanopore developments are related to total organic carbon content, clay minerals content, carbonate content and thermal maturity. Nanopores have influences on shale gas storage capacity, occurrences of shale gas and seepage mechanisms. Frontier research and development directions were proposed. In the aspect of nanopore characterization techniques of shales, the accuracy and efficiency of the experiments and threedimensional imaging technology should be improved constantly. Qualitative and quantitative characterization techniques should be combined. As to the evaluation of shale nanopore reservoirs, the factors that control nanopore developments, shale gas storing and producing and nanopores characterization and evaluation of continental heterogeneous shale are the key issues for further research.

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