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Gas-Driven Fracturing of Saturated Granular Media

James Campbell, Deren Ozturk, Bjornar Sandnes Orcid Logo

Physical Review Applied, Volume: 8, Issue: 6

Swansea University Authors: James Campbell, Deren Ozturk, Bjornar Sandnes Orcid Logo

Abstract

Multiphase flows in deformable porous materials are important in numerous geological and geotechnical applications, however the complex flow behaviour make subsurface transport processes difficult to control or even characterise. Here we study gas-driven (pneumatic) fracturing of a wet unconsolidate...

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Published in: Physical Review Applied
ISSN: 2331-7019 2331-7019
Published: 2017
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URI: https://cronfa.swan.ac.uk/Record/cronfa36781
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spelling 2021-01-14T13:01:51.9205222 v2 36781 2017-11-16 Gas-Driven Fracturing of Saturated Granular Media 15b7a72d171aac4c2327a3c7c69dfd92 James Campbell James Campbell true false 14712812fc31e03fc3a3bc9033165beb Deren Ozturk Deren Ozturk true false 61c7c04b5c804d9402caf4881e85234b 0000-0002-4854-5857 Bjornar Sandnes Bjornar Sandnes true false 2017-11-16 EEN Multiphase flows in deformable porous materials are important in numerous geological and geotechnical applications, however the complex flow behaviour make subsurface transport processes difficult to control or even characterise. Here we study gas-driven (pneumatic) fracturing of a wet unconsolidated granular packing confined in a Hele-Shaw cell, and present an in-depth analysis of both pore-scale phenomena and large-scale pattern formation. The process is governed by a complex interplay between pressure, capillary, frictional and viscous forces. At low gas injection rate, fractures grow in a stick-slip fashion and branch out to form a simply connected network. We observe the emergence of a characteristic length-scale -- the separation distance between fracture branches -- creating an apparent uniform spatial fracture density. We conclude that the well defined separation distance is the result of local compaction fronts surrounding fractures, keeping them apart. A scaling argument is presented that predicts fracture density as a function of granular friction, grain size, and capillary interactions. We study the influence of gas injection rate, and find that the system undergoes a fluidisation transition above a critical injection rate, resulting in directional growth of fractures, and a fracture density that increases with increasing rate. A dimensionless Fluidisation number F is defined as the ratio of viscous to frictional forces, and our experiments reveal a frictional regime for F1) characterized by continuous growth in several fracture branches simultaneously. Journal Article Physical Review Applied 8 6 2331-7019 2331-7019 29 12 2017 2017-12-29 10.1103/physrevapplied.8.064029 COLLEGE NANME Engineering COLLEGE CODE EEN Swansea University 2021-01-14T13:01:51.9205222 2017-11-16T09:47:24.1373623 Faculty of Science and Engineering School of Engineering and Applied Sciences - Chemical Engineering James Campbell 1 Deren Ozturk 2 Bjornar Sandnes 0000-0002-4854-5857 3 0036781-16112017095630.pdf Campbell_2017.pdf 2017-11-16T09:56:30.8130000 Output 14215308 application/pdf Accepted Manuscript true 2017-11-16T00:00:00.0000000 true eng
title Gas-Driven Fracturing of Saturated Granular Media
spellingShingle Gas-Driven Fracturing of Saturated Granular Media
James Campbell
Deren Ozturk
Bjornar Sandnes
title_short Gas-Driven Fracturing of Saturated Granular Media
title_full Gas-Driven Fracturing of Saturated Granular Media
title_fullStr Gas-Driven Fracturing of Saturated Granular Media
title_full_unstemmed Gas-Driven Fracturing of Saturated Granular Media
title_sort Gas-Driven Fracturing of Saturated Granular Media
author_id_str_mv 15b7a72d171aac4c2327a3c7c69dfd92
14712812fc31e03fc3a3bc9033165beb
61c7c04b5c804d9402caf4881e85234b
author_id_fullname_str_mv 15b7a72d171aac4c2327a3c7c69dfd92_***_James Campbell
14712812fc31e03fc3a3bc9033165beb_***_Deren Ozturk
61c7c04b5c804d9402caf4881e85234b_***_Bjornar Sandnes
author James Campbell
Deren Ozturk
Bjornar Sandnes
author2 James Campbell
Deren Ozturk
Bjornar Sandnes
format Journal article
container_title Physical Review Applied
container_volume 8
container_issue 6
publishDate 2017
institution Swansea University
issn 2331-7019
2331-7019
doi_str_mv 10.1103/physrevapplied.8.064029
college_str Faculty of Science and Engineering
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hierarchy_top_id facultyofscienceandengineering
hierarchy_top_title Faculty of Science and Engineering
hierarchy_parent_id facultyofscienceandengineering
hierarchy_parent_title Faculty of Science and Engineering
department_str School of Engineering and Applied Sciences - Chemical Engineering{{{_:::_}}}Faculty of Science and Engineering{{{_:::_}}}School of Engineering and Applied Sciences - Chemical Engineering
document_store_str 1
active_str 0
description Multiphase flows in deformable porous materials are important in numerous geological and geotechnical applications, however the complex flow behaviour make subsurface transport processes difficult to control or even characterise. Here we study gas-driven (pneumatic) fracturing of a wet unconsolidated granular packing confined in a Hele-Shaw cell, and present an in-depth analysis of both pore-scale phenomena and large-scale pattern formation. The process is governed by a complex interplay between pressure, capillary, frictional and viscous forces. At low gas injection rate, fractures grow in a stick-slip fashion and branch out to form a simply connected network. We observe the emergence of a characteristic length-scale -- the separation distance between fracture branches -- creating an apparent uniform spatial fracture density. We conclude that the well defined separation distance is the result of local compaction fronts surrounding fractures, keeping them apart. A scaling argument is presented that predicts fracture density as a function of granular friction, grain size, and capillary interactions. We study the influence of gas injection rate, and find that the system undergoes a fluidisation transition above a critical injection rate, resulting in directional growth of fractures, and a fracture density that increases with increasing rate. A dimensionless Fluidisation number F is defined as the ratio of viscous to frictional forces, and our experiments reveal a frictional regime for F1) characterized by continuous growth in several fracture branches simultaneously.
published_date 2017-12-29T03:41:37Z
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